How to Raise Twins on a Budget

Are twins twice the fun but also twice the price? Raising one child is already enough of an expense requiring careful budgeting for a family. If you’re raising twins, you’re now faced with that stress times two. With some careful planning and a few simple saving tricks, raising twins on a budget is entirely possible.


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    Create a monthly budget. Write down exactly what amount of money is allocated for the babies' clothes, food and other needed items, including medication, diapers, sterilizing items, bedding, school items later on, etc. Aim to stick to this budget closely.
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    Consider the ways in which you can cut down your unnecessary spending. To begin with, avoid buying everything brand new. Your babies and young toddlers won't mind wearing their cousins' hand-me-downs and traveling about in your friends' baby buggy built for two. They're not status-conscious; they're just wanting to keep warm, snug and well-fed.
    • Eat at home more often. The idea of eating out may be a tempting one, especially when you’re chasing two kids around all day, but do this too often and you're eating into the budget in a big way. Instead, you can make your family a home-cooked meal that won’t just save you money, but will help ensure that your children develop healthy eating habits through observation and practice. Besides, chasing twins around the restaurant isn't the most fun ways to relax!
    • Thinking of upgrading your car to a minivan or truck to accommodate your growing twins? Consider trading in your current vehicle and purchasing a used one rather than getting a brand new one. Many car dealerships offer used vehicles with little wear and tear, and will even include a warranty.
    • Don’t spend money on extravagant day trips. Instead, keep it simple. Believe it or not, there are plenty of fun activities that you can do with your twins that won’t break the bank. Take a walk through your local park, have a picnic or go to the beach. Children, whether they're twins or not, don't need fancy entertainment. They will find the most exciting things in nature and they're happiest just spending time with you.
    • Make the most of free neighborhood events. Visit your local library and check their calendar of upcoming events. While there, inquire about any information they may have about free community programs for children and families such as mommy-and-me classes, museum visits or arts and crafts classes. They may even be able to direct you to local outings sponsored by community businesses that are free of charge. This is a great habit to get into; moms are always looking for ways to keep the kids busy and active.
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    Consider buying food items in bulk. Your local warehouse club is a great place to stock up on everyday items your family needs. They stock everything from food and cereal, to diapers and wipes, health and beauty products and clothing. Buying in bulk is great for large families, you get to stockpile your favorite items and save money while doing it.
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    Invest in a meat freezer for your garage or freezer and start purchasing meats in bulk. It may not seem typical to buy meats in large quantities, but with a meat freezer you can store meat for up to one year if it is properly packaged. When doing this, make sure the meat is wrapped properly in freezer paper to keep meat fresh and prevent freezer burn.
    • With a packed freezer you will always have something to make the family for dinner.
    • This trick will also cut back on gas because you won’t need to make as many trips to the store. Less gas means more savings in the bank.
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    Use coupons whenever possible.
    • Check your newspaper for coupons and clip away.
    • Organize your coupons by category and store them in a coupon folder. This will help keep trips to the store organized, especially helpful when shopping with the twins in tow.
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    Search out discounts for families with multiples. Take to the Internet and research your favorite brands. You may even be able to join a product club designed especially for parents of multiples, or receive special coupons.
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    Inquire about multi-child discounts if you’ll be putting your twins in daycare or preschool. You may be offered a reduction in rates when enrolling more than one child.
    • Always ask for discounts for more than one child. Many after school activities will provide a reduced price for the second sibling, so take advantage of these deals whenever you can.
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    Remember that having same-sex twins does not mean the two children have to wear matching outfits all of the time. In fact, the more clothing variety that you have, the greater the wardrobe your twins will have, especially if they are able to share clothes.
    • Save the identical outfits for holidays, vacations or special occasions.
    • When shopping for everyday clothing, purchase different outfits that both twins can wear to double their wardrobe.
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    Tell anyone who will listen to you that you will gladly take hand-me-downs. Getting items secondhand is a great way to stockpile clothing and toys for twins of any age.
    • Consider a trip to a thrift store, yard sale, or consignment shop. Places such as these may be chock full of nearly new stuff. Chances are you will find just what you need, or at least something very similar, at a fraction of the cost.
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    Have your twins share items such as clothing and toys whenever possible. Even if they have separate bedrooms, they can still share items between them.
    • Be sure to keep an item or two that each child can call their own, something special that he or she does not have to share.
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    Avoid the parenting trap of thinking that your twins will need every item lining the store shelves. Stick to the basics, especially if you will be the one purchasing these items.
    • There is no need to buy every new toy or product on the market. Chances are, you won’t need it anyway, so shop smart. Implement this tip while the twins are still babies.
    • If you start out overspending on frivolous toys and unnecessary items when they are small, it will be a hard habit to break when the twins are older. Rather than try to change the game midway through childhood, it’s best to avoid the trap altogether and stick with the basics from the get go.
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    Teach the twins to put needs before wants as soon as they are old enough to understand. Let it be known that your family operates on a budget. Growing up with this knowledge from the beginning will help prevent meltdowns in the future.
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    Pay close attention to any possible tax deductions that you may be eligible for. Talk to your accountant; you may be able to receive deductions for childcare costs or other benefits, depending on where you live.


  • Use cash whenever possible. The general rule is that if you can purchase items using cash, you most likely can afford them.


  • Always check for recalls on any toys that are handed down or purchased secondhand.
  • Never use a secondhand car seat; it may not be up to current safety standards.

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Categories: Budgeting | Managing Your Money