The Real Deal: How to save big preparing for your little bundle of joy

Expectant parents are facing rising costs for all their essential baby needs.
The prices of diapers, baby food, and formula have doubled in price over the course of the past ten years. Parents can count on paying more than $15,000 in the first year of a baby's life.
How can you save on all the gear that goes along with your new bundle of joy? News 12's consumer reporter Janice Lieberman has The Real Deal on how to keep those costs low.
"You don't actually have to have a baby shower or even send your registry out to anyone to take advantage of some of the great perks that registries offer," says Robin Hilmantel, from What to Expect.
Hilmantel suggests creating a baby registry no matter what.
"You can just kind of use it as a wish list for yourself, and a shopping list to use when you do become eligible for that completion discount closer to your due date," she says.
She says there are some great ways to save big in order to load up on all the baby necessities, but one of the best secrets is add on other items you may need around the house to get an extra discount - stuff like paper towels or blankets.
Keep tags and receipts on all the cute baby clothes you get as gifts. If your baby outgrows the clothes before using them - you can return.
Babies can be picky about what they like and what they don't like - from bottles to swings and strollers - so check out return policies.
"One of the reasons we love sending parents to Buy Buy Baby is because they have a very generous return policy," Hilmantel says.
Make sure when you sign up for a registry you ask for the retailers welcome box, it usually has lots of useful free samples.
Completion discounts are usually good for several months.
When it comes to diapers and wipes check out quantities before you purchase and make sure you are getting the best price.
If you have a story idea, question or tip, click here to reach out to Janice.