It’s almost always a good idea to shop used, especially for kid stuff, since they grow out of it so quickly. However, there are things best left behind on your trip to the neighborhood garage sale.
- Cribs and children’s furniture – Only because you may not be aware of safety recalls. If you buy, be aware.
- Car seats – a good, new car seat can be very cheap. With used, you don’t know the quality of the seat and padding which degrades greatly in an accident, with use, or by being dropped on the ground. Heaven forbid, your child ever needs the protection of a car seat, but if he or she does, you want it to work.
- Swimsuits and undergarments – For obvious reasons, though a wash on “very hot” and some bleach will render this a non-issue. But still….
- Bicycle helmets – Helmets too don’t show the kind of wear that would reduce their protection.
- DVD players – too many moving parts and high repair costs.
- Digital and video cameras – Same problem. You don’t want to repair for someone else’s accident.
- Hats- Here the issue is lice, so don’t even try on hats at a used store.
- Mattresses and bedding – Mattresses are only meant to last 10 or so years anyway. Hazards here are mold, especially, but dust mites and even bed bugs.
- Shoes – Shoes mold to the feet, so this is not a good idea, even for small kids.
Other than this, happy shopping.