Celebrate Life Moments
A guide to setting up the nursery—without breaking the bank
Maintaining a budget takes on new meaning for expectant parents. One of your first potentially big expenses is setting up a safe and stylish nursery. But relax: there are ways to get it done without going broke.
Stick to the basics
The nursery is for you, at least for the first year. A newborn doesn't know or care how many chic designer accessories are in her room. As you shop, remember that you're the one who is really going to be "using" the nursery—whether you're changing a diaper, doing a 2 a.m. feeding, or trying (again) to put your baby in his crib without waking him.
Keep your shopping focus on functionality and you'll keep spending in check. The list of absolute musts in a nursery is actually pretty short: a sturdy crib, a firm crib mattress, a comfortable rocker or glider for you, a changing table, and a small dresser.
Before you know it, you'll have a little person with a big idea for a theme for her room. Saving up for when it makes sense to do a full-on decorating job is smart.
The solution may be putting your savings on auto-pilot. The Chase Automatic Savings Program lets you decide how much of your paycheck to transfer into savings when it hits your checking account. Do it once, and you're done. (You can always change the amount or turn off the service.)
Think double duty
Anything that serves two purposes will save you money in the long run, like a convertible crib. They cost a little more than standard cribs, but they can be used longer. These can be changed into a toddler bed, and some convert to a twin or full-size bed after that.
A dresser with a removable changing-station top is another example. Unlike a traditional changing table with a short lifespan, you can save money (and space) with one of these practical hybrids.
Keep decorating simple
One of easiest ways to pretty-up a wall is to paint it with chalkboard paint. In a few years, your preschooler will love it.
Using stencils and decals are also simple ways to decorate nursery walls. They come in a variety of designs, are inexpensive, and you don't need any artistic talent to create a unique look for your baby's room.
If you absolutely have your heart set on the perfect, albeit pricey, pieces for your baby's space, buying them using credit that you can afford to payback over a reasonable amount of time without occurring excessive fees. Many new parents find using one a simple way to save money, not just on big purchases like baby gear and nursery furnishings, but on everyday purchases too.
Show off wood floors
Plush, cushy carpet feels nice underfoot, but you may want to consider just going with wood floors. Wood floors generally look slick, won't seem babyish in a few years when you have a toddler running around, and are easier to keep clean. And you can always top them with an inexpensive, easy-to-swap rug as your tastes change.
Learn more about other Chase credit cards.
Christina Vercelletto is a Chase News contributor. She is a former editor at Parenting, and Babytalk, and has written for Family Fun, Family Circle, and Fit Pregnancy and Baby.