New vs Used Toys for Twins

05 June 2012

I had my first real foray into the world of "garage sales" last month when I attended the very well-organized Twins, Triplets and Multiples sale here in Calgary (big ups to my friend Ms Ginger who's part of the organizing committee and I finally got to meet). I was surprised at the amount of toys available for resale and have to confess I argued back and forth with myself on the new versus used toys scenario. Here's how the argument played out in my head

New Toys: 

  1. Are more expensive
  2. Are safer. If it's been recalled, it'll be pulled from the shelves of all reputable retailers
  3. Are healthier - I'm sure it's had no contact with any other bodily fluids but my child's
  4. Bring the thrill of opening something new
  5. May end up being bait-and-switch. The toy itself is inexpensive but the accessories cost much
Used Toys:
  1. Are cheaper
  2. Are usually sold complete with accessories so no looking for that special piece
  3. May not be in good working condition  
  4. Are not covered by warranty and usually cannot be returned
  5. Make me wonder if I'm being a cheap parent and taking the frugal thing too far. After all, "don't my kids deserve the best new things?"
In the end, new and used both have their pros and cons. I concluded that since my twins have been in a public daycare since they were 6 months old, they've be playing with toys that are not new anyway so what's the difference if the used toy is at home or in the daycare? 

With that being said, I still have a list of toys I would buy new and toys I won't.

Toys to buy new
  • Plush toys 
  • Computer like electronic toys that HAVE to be in good working condition to be fully enjoyed
  • Anything for a baby under 9 months. From 9 months they're crawling and putting all sorts of things in their mouth anyway
Toys to buy used:
  • Any toy that can be cleaned in a dishwasher
  • Big, expensive plastic e.g play houses, picnic tables, outdoor activity centers, wagons, play kitchens etc
  • Well-made brand-name toys that are really expensive in retail compared to similar toys; think Educo, Melissa and Doug and other eco-type brands

That's my take. I had fun at the sale and have enjoyed getting some good deals on toys this summer. Now that the girls are active toddlers, there's a lot that I want to give them and I'm glad not to have to pay full-retail for everything. 

Obviously this is toy week on mytwintopia. (Have you noticed I try to have weekly themes). Later in the week, I'll be sharing my tips on buying toys for less. 

Linking this post to Capri + 3 for Multiples Monday

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