Surprisingly, or not, this is the number one response I get from people when they inquire with me, but decide not to book.
I get it, I really do. Custom photography is a massive investment when babies themselves are already very expensive for a family! The list of things you need to pay for in preparation of a new baby is endless, and the thought of finding a way to add an additional $3000+ to that can be hard to imagine!
But isn’t your new baby’s arrival into this world worth it?? Shouldn’t professionally documenting your new baby be just as important, if not more so, than your wedding??
Here are some ways you can work your finances to make it happen if having a custom photographer is a priority for you!
PUT IT ON YOUR BABY REGISTRY
You already have a baby registry for all the other things you want to purchase for baby, so why not add your photography desires to that list as well? And since people love to spend money on babies, whether its everyday life necessities or lifetime memories, your friends and family will be more than happy to contribute!
A lot of photographers (myself included) make it super easy for you to set up a Gift Registry by providing this service to their clients, free of charge! Even if your contributors are only able to give $50 each, if you have 10 people who do this, it already puts you well on your way with a $500 head start!
Every little bit helps, and if you get the information about your registry out early enough, you give people plenty of time to help out over the course of your pregnancy.
CUT BACK ON UNNECESSARY SPENDING
Your daily Starbucks is important. And you are totally invested in the lives of all the characters on your favorite shows. No judgement from me, as I too survive on caffeine and Netflix. And, honey, I’m no quitter! BUT, if I had to choose between all of my extra “luxuries” and something as important as a maternity, birth, and/or newborn photographer, I hands down would be willing to give those things up for a little bit.
Did you know that just one coffee/drink from Starbucks a day adds up to at least $1000 in just 7 months?! Crazy, right?!
So where else can you free up some money in your regular routine?? Do you have a gym membership you don’t use? Do you really need cable, Hulu, and Netflix? Could you cook at home more often instead of eating out? Maybe you could cut back on getting your nails done every two weeks. Whatever it is you choose, also remember that its only temporary, unless you decide otherwise!
ASK ABOUT PAYMENT PLANS
This may not be something that all photographers offer, however I feel like this is a great option for people who have it in their budget to spend, just not available all at once. If you don’t know if the photographer you have chosen offers payment plans, ASK! While many birth photographers will require you to have your balance paid off by the time they go on call, the sooner you reach out, the more time you will have to spread out your payments. For example, a $2,000 investment paid over 7 months is $285 a month, which is a much more manageable number. You might also choose to pay weekly or biweekly depending on your regular spending or your paycheck cycle. One perk I offer my clients when it comes to payment plans is the fact that they are interest free!
SELL YOUR STUFF
Clothes that don’t fit. Shoes that no longer match any of your clothes. Decorations or kitchen items that don’t go with the rest of your home decor. How many things do you have laying around your house that you don’t use anymore? Now, how many of these things are less important to you than custom photography would be??
If it doesn’t “spark joy”, then sell it for quick cash and add it to your photographer fund!
BARTER YOUR OWN SKILLS
Have a particular set of skills that your photographer might be interested in? Ask if you can trade, dollar for dollar! I know for me personally, I could always use a house cleaning and I’m never one to turn down a new tattoo! While trading services might not work for every photographer (because let’s face it, bartering doesn’t exactly pay the bills), it never hurts to ask! The worst they could say is no! Even if what you offer is only a small portion of your total, something is better than nothing and, most of the time, everyone wins!
CHARGE IT OR TAKE OUT A LOAN
While I’m much more inclined to tell someone to put it on a credit card than I am to take out a loan, both options result in additional charges via interest making them very similar in terms of “cost”. At least with a credit card, you can get points to use towards other fun stuff!
A loan might sound like a bit much, but when you think of how much you probably paid for your wedding, shouldn’t the birth of your child(ren) be worth more important than that? I mean, obviously this should be a last resort if all other options have been exhausted, but it is a viable option nonetheless!
SELL A KIDNEY ON THE BLACK MARKET
Yes, custom photography is a luxury, but that doesn’t mean that you can’t have it just because you don’t have all the funds up front! Using one or a few of these options to make the cost more manageable for your own financial situation is the easiest way to make your custom photography dreams a reality!!
Have a creative way to fund your photographer that’s not on this list? Be sure to let me know so I can add it!