Worried about finances

Discussion in 'Pregnancy Help' started by lilybay, Apr 25, 2011.

  1. lilybay

    lilybay Well-Known Member

    I want to preface this by saying that I know God will not give us anything we can't handle! I know this will all work out. I'm just so worried and I hope it's OK if I just vent to all of you. I'm sure some of you have been through this exact same thing and maybe you will have some ideas for us.

    My husband and I both work full time. We were completely financially prepared to have one child and then surprise! Twins! We know that we are blessed - so very blessed. But now we're thinking about logistics and I don't know what we will do.

    Daycare costs for two babies will be my entire paycheck. And we cannot pay for our living expenses (phone, gas, electric, water, food,insurance) on my husband's salary alone. We are already looking at canceling cable, cutting out cellphones, and asking our insurance company for lower rates. The only debt we have right now is our mortgage - our cars are paid off and we don't have credit card debt.

    It's frustrating. We've always been so careful with our money! We got married last year and our wedding and honeymoon were completely paid for by the time we reached the altar. We don't travel or have extravagant hobbies. I'm at a loss at where to cut expenses further. We don't think selling the house in this market is going to help us, it might just make things worse. If I quit working full time, which is an option we are thinking about, I could always waitress or work retail on nights or weekends to bring in a few extra dollars.

    We don't mind living simply for a few years, but it's not being able to pay our normal living expenses that scares me.

    Thank you all for listening! I have days when I feel like everything will be just fine, but my husband and I were discussing this earlier today and now I'm a worried mess. I really would appreciate hearing how other people have made things work!
    1 person likes this.
  2. becasquared

    becasquared Well-Known Member TS Moderator

    We changed schedules at work. My husband switched to second shift (1pm-10pm), and I switched to 7am-3pm. That left just a few hours a day that needed coverage and we hired a daily sitter. Maybe something like that could work for you?
  3. cheezewhiz24

    cheezewhiz24 Well-Known Member TS Moderator

    Do you think you could live on your salary alone and he could care for the babies? I'm not sure if that's a viable option, but something to consider.

    It was daunting at first- my DH got laid off when I was 8.5 mos pregnant and I my job dried up when they were 6 weeks old, so we did it on unemployment for about 10 months.

    It's doable- we have 1 car which we share, no cable, (we do have internet) I shop for clothes and household items mostly at Goodwill or on Cragislist and honestly, the first year isn't too expensive (we did cloth diapers and no formula). I have picked up a night job at times which was chaotic but we did it. You really do make it work.
  4. lilybay

    lilybay Well-Known Member

    Thank you both for your suggestions! Those are great ideas. It's nice to know that we aren't the first couple who have faced this situation. And thank you for listening, it really helps!
  5. lianyla

    lianyla Well-Known Member

    Just so you know, most of us felt this same way!! I was soooooooooo scared and ended up having to quit my job (teaching) cuz I would've been paying IN to work! Anyway, it WILL all work out!! For sure.

  6. E's 3

    E's 3 Well-Known Member

    I was sooo worried about this. We made the decision to try to live on DH's salary after my mat leave ended since we would have 3 in daycare full time if I went back to work until next fall when my oldest will start Kindergarden.

    I didn't think it was possible to live with 3 kids on just one salary but we're doing very well. Like you said we cut cable, cell phones, internet, etc...anything we could. We are very careful with our money and have now had to be even more careful but I don't feel like any of us are doing without. One of the things I did for the baby stuff this time around was buy second hand...I have no idea why I didn't do this with my first but almost everything I've bought for the girls (furniture, toys, clothes, stroller, etc) has been second hand and that has really kept costs down. You can find things in like new condition for less than half the price!

    We had been planning on doing some home renos and buying a hot tub before the girls, instead we bought a van and are living with our house as is :). I don't think anyone actually plans for multiples, I know we certainly didn't but this is the course our life has taken and we're making due! I'm sure you'll find a way to make it work for your family as well.
  7. KCMichigan

    KCMichigan Well-Known Member

    I stopped working w/ my girls were born, they were preemies and the Dr said to stay out of daycare until they were 6+ months old....we could not afford it on my salary anyway.

    We were worried, but it worked out.

    We actually did accrue some debt the first year due to medical, specialized formula, and diapers. BUT then we were able to balance it out once the twins were a year old.

    I would look into local resources:

    do you qualify for: (if you are not working)


    food assistance?

    childcare assistance?

    Get on mailing lists for diapers/formula (if you use formula) and stock up with coupons. Shop second hand for clothes/toys/goods as much as you can. Talk to your childs Dr- ours gave us a lot of samples of formula and medications (inhalers) that were not much, but over time it really added up!

    Talk to local twin clubs----they will have some great ideas, as well as likely some baby gear for low prices.

    Also-- now that my girls are older, I take them to work with me (I work at a preschool). When they were younger- I worked a few evenings while DH worked days. It was doable and that little bit helped.
    1 person likes this.
  8. lilybay

    lilybay Well-Known Member

    Thank you all so much!
  9. ECUBitzy

    ECUBitzy Well-Known Member

    I wanted to chime in with our experience, as I really worried about finances when we found out we were having twins. I'm a total type A personality and plan things very exactly in our life, so multiples seemed like the ultimate curve ball!

    We own our home, have two new cars, and (I thought) were absolutely dependent on two incomes. My husband teaches and I am an office manager, so we don't make much. We've really focused on only buying necessities, we've cut out almost every "extra" in our life (although, we do still have data plans on our phones, but that was next to go). One thing we're considering if my husband loses his job this summer (which is looking likely with the budget cuts in our state) is selling one vehicle in favor of a cheapo used car for me. If we eliminated the need for childcare (by Paul staying home) and a vehicle payment, we would actually only be marginally poorer overall.

    My advice is to sit down and write out a monthly balance sheet. Put every single expense that you have (include gas and health insurance, food and recurring bills). Then call around for childcare rates and factor that in. Once you have all the numbers on paper it is easy to see where you can afford to cut things if you needed to. Yes, kids are expensive, but there are ways to live frugally. Buying second-hand is a GREAT tip. Craigslist is the motherload for baby gear. Many people are more concerned with unloading the items than actually making money, plus you can haggle quite a bit. Get in touch with your Multiples group, they often have yard sales and tips for saving further in your area.

    As overwhelming as it can be, it's also manageable. I HATE when people say that you "just make it work" because it sounds so uncertain, but it is really true in this case. Let us know if you need any more tips- we've all been there!
  10. momof6

    momof6 Well-Known Member

    I know it can be totally overwhelming! We already had 6 kids and thought we were having one more and then came 2! We knew God had not given us more than we could handle and He would provide. IMO if your entire check would go to daycare you are better off staying home (you will spend less on gas too by not driving to and from work and day care everyday!). You would be paying someone so you could work.. doesn't make sense to me. We have, at times had to cut cable, etc and are doing it again now. We live on 1 salary (and my DH is self employed so we never know from month to month where the money will come from) It is good you are out of debt and to the best of your ability stay that way. We now have 8 kids and spend only $600 a month on food and non food items (diapers, soap etc). We buy very healthy no junk food mostly organic. It is possible to buy with a budget and do it very healthy! We have found ways to cut corners and you will too! We buy used clothes and shop sales. When you live on a tight budget you get creative! I nurse but when we thought we were going to be on formula the Dr office did give us samples... a lot of them. So check there for sure! Good luck and try not to worry it will work out! Good luck!
  11. Katheros

    Katheros Well-Known Member

    I had the same problem when I had my twins. We couldn't afford for me not to work, but couldn't afford to pay my entire salary to day care either! I ended up going back to work the midnight shift (midnight-8am) and my then husband (we've since divorced) worked during the days. It was really hard, though. I did that for about a year and a half but by then I was a single parent. Then I mostly relied on family members to help and eventually just had to put them in daycare. Even on my own I still made too much money to qualify for any state aid, though. It was tough but I prevailed somehow!

    The day care costs do go down as they get older, so be mindful of that.
  12. E's 3

    E's 3 Well-Known Member

    This is exactly what I did and it actually really helped...sometimes you don't realize where you can cut from until you see the numbers. We didn't think we had much we could cut and we were surprised that there were things we could get rid of. I also found that when I knew I was going to have to write it down that I really started to think twice about my purchases ;).
  13. twinsnowwhat

    twinsnowwhat Well-Known Member

    Lots of great ideas above but also think creatively about childcare. Of course we all want the absolute best when it comes to the care of our children but I have come to realize that I am giving them the best that I can with what I have. We ended up with part time in home daycare vs a center which around here can be VERY costly especially when they are infants. Do you have any family in the area that could watch them or even just one day a week? Do either you or your husband have any flexibility in your work schedule (4-10's, work from home, etc)? I have friends that were SAHM that would also help a day or 2 a week - maybe someone who is currently unemployed that you know and of course trust.
  14. Leighann

    Leighann Well-Known Member

    My DH and I also flexed our schedules to minimize child care costs. Ask around to see how much sitters make an hour and check out daycares that allow part-time care (not all in my area would do that especially for twins).
  15. sheila185

    sheila185 Well-Known Member

    It is so nice to know we are not alone. We got pregnant with identical twins on a whim and lost one in utero at 28weeks; Lucas is now 2 years 4 months old. The Dr's assured us that the chances of twins again was EXTREMELY UNLIKELY so we FINALLY worked up the courage to try again. This past Friday we went for our first sonogram to find out that we are 8w 3d pregnant with another set of twins. CRAZY. I have been crying uncontrollably and am a mess.

    Like so many of you have said; we also have no debt to speak of besides our mortgage. We have no idea how we are going to send 3 children to daycare. We both owrk full time (I work at a credit union and my husband in home remodeling) and there is no chance of working opposite shifts. I have to continue to work because I am the sole provider of insurance benefits. He has no interest staying at home and daycare is going to cost us $352 a week. This is a huge worry on top of all of our other worries.

    I have thought about in-home childcare to minimize the chance of illness and cost might be a little less but I have a concern about dependability.

    I think at times my husband already feels like he has already given up so much. I know I have as well but I am simpler and much easier satisfied. I need to amke this budget work.!

    Yikes....if only we were as lucky with the lotto as we are with concieving multiples on our own.
  16. babyhopes09

    babyhopes09 Well-Known Member

    We are much the same as everyone else who has posted. My DH has a job that is commission-based salary only and I worked as a speech therapist in a local school district and in private practice. We were stunned when we found out we were having twins and really the biggest costs for us were diapers, formula, med bills, and doc appts. I stopped working private practice and ran into the same problem with paying instead of making money if we sent the girls to daycare. We now have someone that comes to our house one day/week and my mom watches them the other day and a half, though it is not optimal b/c we feel like we are asking too much of her. Then when the girls were 8 months we found out we were expecting #3 and we were floored.. we are due next month and we know we will have to cut costs again, but it will work out!
  17. AmynTony

    AmynTony Well-Known Member

    also - if you drop to one income you may qualify for services such as WIC which will help with food costs...
  18. rtj

    rtj Well-Known Member

    Congratulations on your twins! Also on your frugal living. It sounds like you are on the right track!

    One idea if you can flex your hours with your husband's is to get some homeschooled highschoolers to come care for your twins. Much cheaper, can work flexible hours during the day and also tend to be very responsible!

    But I also think quitting your job and trying to find a weekend job is a good idea. One idea is to look for a job at a health club. I teach at one and it's free childcare while I'm working. So, you could work during the day- at the front desk, lifeguard, teach swimming, fitness classes etc. and potentially have the twins there being watched for free.

    I have gotten pretty much all the stuff for the twins second hand- cribs, clothes, toys, books. A lot of hand-me-downs. Look for twin sales in your area, join MOPS or MOMS club and they will often get groups of women to provide meals for you during the first few weeks (money saver), plus they often do toy/clothing exchanges where you get stuff for free. Learn to coupon or at least follow store ads. Organize a group to do make-ahead meals (a real money saver). Shop around often for all the best insurance plans etc. I call my cable company at least every 6 months and threaten to switch companies unless they can offer me a better deal. They always come through :).

    Educate yourself as much as possible on nursing and seek out as much help to make nursing possible. It'll save you a lot of money. Even if you go back to work, you can pump. Also, I use cloth diapers (that I wash/not a service) and that has saved me a bunch. It is an upfront cost but I've seen them for sale second hand at kids' consignment stores and they looked in great shape.

    I think we've managed to keep our total cost for the first year of twins under $1000 and that includes everything- car seats, cribs, strollers (got as gifts), clothes, food, diapers, wipes. But I did have a few angel friends with twin girls that have passed on a bunch of stuff to me so that helped tremendously.

    You have the right focus- that God will sustain you as you raise up your blessings! Congrats again!
  19. jzimmerman

    jzimmerman Member

    This is our biggest concern too. Daycare expenses are going to hurt!
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