reCrib: Buy and Sell Top Quality Secondhand Baby Gear

ReCrib is a dreamy place to purchase high quality baby gear or make money selling used baby items. Thank goodness a site like this now exists!

If only we would have had reCrib when our babies were little. In our book, The Eco-nomical Baby Guide, we share that we each spent about a thousand dollars on our babies’ first year, and we did it by reducing, recycling and repurposing what we already had. (Typical american families spent upwards of seven thousand on baby’s first year alone!)

With reCrib you can buy heirloom quality baby gear at 40-60% off retail prices, and then sell it back (using reCrib) for a respectable sum when your baby has outgrown it. It’s essentially a top quality, online consignment store.

The Story of an Infant Car Seat

Now that we’ve cleared the air about our stance on secondhand car seats, I thought I’d share the exciting story of my own daughter’s infant car seat. We purchased a basic infant car seat before she was born. We weren’t opposed to borrowing one from a friend, but unfortunately none of our friends cooperated by reproducing before we did. (Later we learned that we could have gone without an infant car seat altogether and purchased a convertible car seat instead—that would have lasted longer.)

Once Audrey was over a year old, she outgrew the car seat for height. We passed it down to a friend of a friend, whose baby used it for eight months before he became too heavy for it. On it went to my cousin’s new baby, who outgrew it just in time for me to pass it along to another friend. This is where the car seat is today. As the seat expires very soon (they say to toss a car seat after five to seven years), it may be enjoying its last car rides this year. I am perfectly comfortable with the idea of reusing a car seat in this way—passed along from friend to friend, so we can keep tabs on the seat’s whereabouts.

Can You Use a Secondhand Car Seat?

In the March issue of ShopSmart, put out by the publisher of Consumer Reports, experts analyzed used baby gear to determine “when you can gratefully say yes and when you should gracefully say no thanks.”  I am devoting several posts to discussing their findings.  (I wrote about used  baby bath tubs here.)

ShopSmart has this to say about hand-me-down car seats:

Safe: A car seat that has all its original parts and labels, has never been in a crash, and fits your car and child is OK.

Not Safe: Products more than six years old are outdated, and most likely too run down to be considered safe.