The cost of baby gear adds up quickly, especially for first-time parents, and your baby’s crib represents a large chunk of the budget. Cutting expenses on the crib can make it more affordable, but you must put safety first. The width between slats, height of corner posts, design and construction of the crib all play a role in your baby’s comfort and safety.
Borrow a crib from a friend, family member or acquaintance. Buying the crib from them at a reduced rate is also an option.
Shop at secondhand stores and rummage sales. Inventory changes regularly, so visit often. Choose only a modern, sturdy model that complies with current safety standards.
Look in the newspaper classified ads, Craigslist and local online advertising sites for affordable cribs. Ask about the crib’s condition and age before buying a used bed this way. Again, older cribs might not meet current safety guidelines.
Purchase a floor model, scratch-and-dent or discontinued crib. These cribs are usually significantly discounted but are still new so you get the best of both worlds.
Choose a convertible crib that can change to a toddler bed. This saves money in the long run because the crib grows with your child, rather than being used for only a few years.
Inspect all cribs, especially secondhand beds, to make sure they meet safety standards. According to the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, you should look for slats no further than 2 3/8 in. apart and corner posts no higher than 1/16 in. than the rest of the crib. Inspect the crib for loose screws, missing parts, broken parts or cutouts in the headboard or footboard that could trap your child’s head.