If you are always on the search for bargains at jumble sales, flea markets and secondhand charity shops, you are in excellent company. But while the opportunity to pick up a fantastic deal should never be sniffed at, there are some occasions when you are better off buying new – particularly when it comes to baby, toddler, and child equipment. With this in mind, here are a few of the things you should never buy for your kids secondhand – read on to find out more!
Regardless of how safe a driver you are, the reality is that there are plenty of lunatics on the road at any given time. And obviously, if you are in the car with your kids, you want them to be as safe as possible – so make sure you buy them new car seats. According to research, any child seat that has been involved in a car crash at speeds as low as 30 mph could be unsafe, and when you buy secondhand, there is no way of guaranteeing the history of the seat. Yes, car seats are expensive – but it’s just not worth the risk buying used unless you have 100% trust in the seller.
Cots, Moses baskets and mattresses
There is nothing inherently wrong with picking up a second-hand cot, Moses basket or mattress, but again – how can you possibly trust the seller? Let’s take Moses baskets as an example of something a lot of people buy used or get as a hand-me-down. There is plenty to choose from when you are buying new, but there might be a temptation to grab a bargain and go with the cheap option. But the big difference between a shop seller and a private seller is that you have guarantees from the commercial operation. A private seller might be hiding the fact the basket is broken or has suffered from unseen structural damage. And regardless of whether the basket is OK or not, you should never accept a second-hand mattress – there are links between second-hand mattresses and cot deaths.
As your kids get older, the bicycle becomes a big attraction. And the most critical aspect of keeping them safe while on their bike is, without doubt, the helmet. Yes, they are expensive, and when you are already forking out hundreds of pounds on a bicycle, it can be tempting to cut a few corners. But unfortunately, the structure of an old helmet could be damaged, and you won’t be able to see it. Again, it’s just not worth the risk, only for the sake of saving a bit of money.
Stuffed animals and toys
Finally, be wary of picking up old stuffed toys from markets or jumble sales. The materials used to create these toys are very similar to human hair and can become a home for all kinds of nasties, from bed bugs to lice. A boil wash might kill them all off, but the truth is that you have no idea whether a secondhand toy is as clean as a whistle, or harbouring some severely unsanitary risks.