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Topic Title: HAVING TWINS AND FREAKING OUT
Topic Summary: Need to adjust our budget....but how?
Created On: 02/02/2010 05:19 PM
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 02/02/2010 05:19 PM
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MyTMMO User
I like stuff

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Joined: 01/24/2009


Hi all; I wrote Dave last week via email, and was hoping he'd answer this on the radio,....but now am looking to you like-minded folks for help.

My husband and I are a Total Money Makeover success story in progress. In exactly one year since our Financial Peace University class, we have paid off over $40 000 in debt, eliminated credit cards, and are on Baby Step #2. We are so thankful to our friends who introduced us to this....

Enter the world of fertility fun....we have learned we are now 3 months pregnant with twins. We drive two 10 year old vehicles....that I suppose, could die at any time.

Here's our dilemma we argue about: Do we continue to nail the debt at about $1500 a month, or sock money away for a vehicle, to avoid having to get an auto loan financed?

I am thankful for the blessing of twins, but sick over the fact that out totaly money makeover plan will be so slowed....We were hoping to be debt free in August of 2012.

Your thoughts?

Thanks
wendy
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 02/02/2010 05:28 PM
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MyTMMO User
Golden Gazelle

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When you're pregnant, Dave suggests that you stop the snowball, and pile up as much money as you can, until the babies are born and are 3 months old. Most of the expensive problems with new babies happen in that first 3 months. When they are here, and healthy, you will have that pile of money to find a nice secondhand minivan, and with the leftover money, you can pay off a bunch of debt.

Congratulations on your little blessings!
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 02/02/2010 05:29 PM
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MyTMMO User
Certified Gazelle

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I say you start socking away money now... wait until both babies are born healthy and then go buy yourself a reasonably price used vehicle (@$5,000). Then sell one of the clunkers and get back into BS2.

Congratulations X2!!
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 02/02/2010 05:33 PM
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MyTMMO User
Leavin' out the "C"

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First of all, congratulations! I'm fairly new here myself, but from what I understand... most folks here recommend stopping snowball payments (or dwindling them down) in lieu of stockpiling money away for baby, or in your case babies!

Unless you feel the vehicles are unsafe, I can't see that spending money on a newer one would be a good idea, especially if you're still in BS2. I see you've completed BS1, so you have your baby emergency fun-- that should be enough for minor car repairs. DH and I both drive older vehicles, and though we have the occasional hiccup, we've always been able to get to where we need to be safely and without breaking the bank.

Try not to stress yourself out. We all have to make adjustments to the plan from time to time. I'm sure some others here with more experience can give you better advice too.
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 02/02/2010 05:43 PM
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Certified Gazelle

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Hi!
Congratulations on your pregancy! That is wonderful news! Also congrats on your TMMO progress!

We have 1 yr old twin boys and drive two 10 year old vehicles too. We take good care of them and do not plan on getting new ones any time soon.

My advice to you is similar to what this board has given to someone having one baby. You don not need to run out and buy a new car, house, and the million other things that a lot of people run out and buy when they find out they are having a baby.

Also don't buy two of everything just because. Try one and make sure you need to buy the other. Also check out your local "mother's of multiples" club garage sales. Lots of matching stuff... that yes, was never or barley used.

Also, I do think you should sock money away until after the babies are born - the whole "storm cloud gathering" thing...

Feel free to PM me anytime if you want to ask any twin questions like "is this stroller worth it?" or just want to comiserate.

Have a happy and safe pregnancy and delivery!
Jen
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 02/02/2010 07:30 PM
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MyTMMO User
Wanna buy my car?

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I am the mom of 16 month old b/g twins. I was scared when I found out I was pregnant with twins at first. They are not as expensive as I thought they would be and I had to do formula.

Feel free to PM me with any questions.
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 02/02/2010 08:00 PM
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MyTMMO User
I am Dave

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If you take good car of your vehicles, there's no reason they shouldn't last at least 15 years. Our cars are 10 years, 14 years, and 16 years old. They all run great and we don't plan on replacing any of them for probably 5 more years.

People in our culture have just been conditioned to think that if a car is old enough to no longer have a payment, then it's no good! As DR says, we are the most marketed-to people in the history of the earth. Don't fall for it!

Also, you've been given the correct advice about money; stockpile it until the babies are 3 months, then resume the snowball. If you really do need a different (maybe bigger) vehicle, sell one of the ones you have and add some $$ from your stockpile to cover the rest of the cost of a good used vehicle.

As kselcher said, twin babies are not as expensive as you might think. When they get older they cost double, but not as babies. Our twins slept in the same crib for a long time; they liked it that way. I had an old fashioned baby buggy that I used to take them for walks for the first five or six months, and they both fit in there just fine. You'll need two car seats, and eventually a double stroller, but other than that you don't have to have doubles of everything. Again, don't let the marketeers lead you around by the nose!

And congratulations! Twins are so much fun. (LOTS of work, but lots of fun!)
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 02/03/2010 01:45 AM
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MyTMMO User
Why call it The Dave Ramsey Show when I’m around?

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Congratulations on the twins! Mine are now 26 years old. I vote with everyone else regarding socking away cash. I spent 3 months in the hospital before they were born 4 1/2 weeks early. And they were in the NICU for several days ... biggest preemies ever there (7 lbs and 7 lbs. 13 oz) but they had breathing issues.
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 02/03/2010 07:46 AM
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MyTMMO User
Sold the kids

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I have 3 1/2 yo twin girls. Unless both your vehicles are 2 seater sports cars I do not think that planning to buy a vehicle right now is the best option for you. I would start stashing cash until the babies are born and are determined that they are healthy. I'd then take that cash stash and apply it to your debt snowball. In reality, you won't be going too many places with twin babies especially the first few weeks!

And +1 to the suggestions of buying baby equipment used with the exception of car seats. I pretty much bought all my stuff for my twins on craigslist or at twins' sales and then resold on craigslist for almost what I paid cause we took good care of eveything and really, you only use swings and bouncy seats and stuff for such a short time anyway.

But again, do not run out and buy a new car just because you are having twins. Find car seats that fit in your current vehicles. car-seat.org is a great place to ask questions and find the best option for you.

Good luck and keep us posted on your progress!
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 02/03/2010 07:56 AM
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More Than Enough

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it.

Some people don't take care of their cars and wait until there is a huge list of things that are wrong with them. Then wonder why the car dies.

If you are PRO-active and stay on top of repairs, you could drive these two cars for another 10 years.
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 02/03/2010 07:58 AM
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More Than Enough

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Forgot to add; I would start a sinking fund for car repairs. It's not will they need fixed, it's when will they need fixed. If you've got the money saved, it won't be a big deal at all, and won't be an emergency when the car is in the shop.
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 02/03/2010 02:11 PM
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MyTMMO User
"Well, Dave says..."

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Also a twin parent!

I agree that you should start saving. You'll need two car seats for sure (and likely multiple bases because you have two cars). We liked the Graco Safe Ride becasue you could use it up to 30lbs while most infant seats go to about 20lbs. And we really needed two swings! They were a life saver for the tiny babies and our sanity. But I'm sure you can find a deal on them. I actually bought ours new but they were on sale for half price at Kohl's and so we literally got two for one. It was nice to get the swings new because it seems like one always wears out and at least you can return it for another new one (the swing we had for our other child wore out too and needed to be replaced before it was outgrown). Other stuff we got on consignment and on eBay (including my totally awesome double jogger - the Jane Power Twin).

Aside from saving you might also want to start stocking up on diapers. It's amazing how many you can go through. If you take the time to register with some of the sites and baby stores (even if you don't go to buy) the will start sending you coupons and sale flyers. I used nearly all of them to purchase diapers and wipes and filled a whole second floor closet with them. The stash lasted me a year and it was so nice to not have to run out for diapers late at night or have to shop around for price since I already knew I'd gotten a good deal on them. Though I didn't do it because I was not that into couponing or anything at the time, I understand you can sometimes get free diapers using combinations of coupons and things like CVS extra bucks. Might be worth looking into.

The other best advice I can give you is to relax and just go with it. The twins will tell you what they need. Some twins like to sleep in the same bed and some do not. Some like bouncers and some do not. And just because one twin likes something doesn't mean the other will (or won't). Even with all this uncertainty, enjoy your time with them. They are amazing!
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 02/04/2010 01:09 PM
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MyTMMO User
Wanna buy my car?

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Congratulations! There is a lot of good advice on this thread but i'll add my two cents and a mom of 3 year old twins. When I found out I was having twins, the nurse said, "I guess you'll be getting a mini van!" well, while the extra room would be nice, we've gotten by all this time with two compact, paid-for cars, one 12 years old and one 5 years old. Setting aside money for car repairs and other emergencies that may come up with the babies is a good idea, though.

Be prepared for possible NICU time and/or early hospitalization or bedrest for yourself. My twins were born 5 weeks early and spent 10 days in the NICU. With good insurance we didn't have to pay a ton of money but it still was a chunk of change. Breastfeed if you can as that saves money too. I breastfed but had to supplement with formula since they were preemies and I had supply issues. even so we still saved by not having to use 100% formula. When they're older, make your own baby food. You can puree fruits and veggies and save lots.

Most Baby equipment you can find secondhand. We bought new car seats and other things we got as gifts or got secondhand. Even our double strollers were all free handmedowns or secondhand. Consider using cloth diapers and wipes. We saved a lot of money that way. It's not hard to wash them at home and there are lots of websites with info about cloth diapering.

Good luck and it doesn't have to break the bank having twins. It will be hard, especially with two infants but there are so many blessings too. I love having two the same age now that they're older.
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 02/04/2010 02:33 PM
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MyTMMO User
I like stuff

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Dear Friends: You should all work for Dave Ramsey, because your hints and advice are invaluable and along the lines of what we had wanted to do, but stress and confusion and being overwhelmed got the best of me. I wrote down all of your suggestions to share with my husband....and I think we have a game plan:

1) We like our vehicles and they are reliable and roomy - take good care of them with regular maintenance.
2) Slow down the debt snowball without guilt
3) Sock away money in the emergency fund for future car repairs, and Murphy's Law and peace of mind.
4) Start with just 1 of most things....
5) We are already begging, borrowing, consigning, and buying used.
6) Maximize our showers!!!!!!)
7) Remind ourselves of this blessing.
8) Breastfeed (Could save us thousands)
9) Use garden produce to make own baby food.


Thank you all....Gotta go now to check out that Jane Power twin stroller!
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 02/04/2010 03:26 PM
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MyTMMO User
Sold the kids

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On the breastfeeding thing - find out if the hospital you plan to deliver at has a lactation consultant and get to know that person. Also find a La Leche League group in your area and attend some meetings ahead of time. Some areas even have special groups for moms of multiples. Also, if you qualify for WIC get signed up with them. They have some awesome breastfeeding support people and information.

I had this pillow:
http://www.justmultiples.com/e...wins-pillow-foam.html
and found it invaluable! Watch craigslist and consignment stores and sales. I got mine used for less than half price and sold it for about the same. It was AWESOME!

Best of luck! Sounds like you have a good plan!
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 02/04/2010 03:28 PM
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MyTMMO User
Leaving a legacy

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Wow... where did all the twin parents come from? LOL

Ours are 19mo boys. We were stuck in the hospital for almost 4 weeks, too, with the boys coming 6 weeks early. We're still arguing with the hospital about bills. Recommendation: check EVERY bill. Twin billing is complicated.

Congrats on your double bundle!
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 02/04/2010 04:02 PM
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MyTMMO User
Sold the kids

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Twin billing is complicated.


No kidding! We had an interesting insurance issue after our twins were born. Their birth date was the 26th. Someone, somewhere, plugged in the 28th as their birth date so all the charges from their first 2 days in the hospital weren't covered. Called the ins. co., they said the hospital had to fix it. Called the hospital and guess what they said? Yep, the ins. co. had to fix it. I think the twins were rolling over by the time they got it straight.

Do stay away from all the cool double strollers though. That was a huge money-sucking downfall of mine. Which reminds me, I need to sell my Phil and Ted's Sport double...
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 02/04/2010 04:02 PM
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MyTMMO User
I am Dave

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wpitlik1,

While it's true that you should stockpile money "just in case," please don't be freaked out by all the stories of moms & babies who had to spend long, expensive periods of time in the hospital. Most twin births go smoothly!

Our twin girls were born 3 days after their due date, had no problems, and we all left the hospital five days later. (Of course, that was 1979; nowadays they'd probably boot you out in 48 hours!)

About breastfeeding, it's great, promotes bonding, saves time, saves money. BUT .... don't feel guilty if you need to supplement with formula. One thing about the La Leche League is that they really pushed for NO supplementation; they told me that if I supplemented with formula my milk would dry up and that would be the end of breastfeeding. That was in 1979 and maybe they've softened their stance by now, but that's what they taught at the time.

Well, for the first 4 weeks I did total breastfeeding, and I really didn't have enough milk. When I finally broke down and gave the girls some bottles, I realized the poor little things were really hungry!! From then on, they got both breast & bottle, and it worked out just fine. I continued to nurse until they were ready to quit -- at about 14 months. They got enough to eat, and I could hand them over to DH & their big brother sometimes for feedings, and go take a rest!
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 02/04/2010 04:16 PM
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MyTMMO User
Why call it The Dave Ramsey Show when I’m around?

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I have no new advice to offer you. I just wanted to say Congratulations! They say twins are double the trouble, but more importantly, they are twice the fun! Have a healthy, happy pregnancy and safe delivery!
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