Dave Says

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Do you think having cancer insurance is a good idea? (July 2015)

Setting up the kid's car insurance (February 2015)

Check cashing for the unbanked (September 2014)

Keep the lifestyle simple (May 2014)

Should she have skin in the game? (September 2013)

Time to pay it off! (September 2013)

Making It Through Medical Leave (July 2013)

Should We Ever Buy A House? (January 2013)

Be Tightfisted Until The Crisis Is Over (January 2013)

Paying the parents (December 2012)

Sallie Mae vs. selling the car (December 2012)

Whatís the worst that can happen? (December 2012)

Letting them in on the secret (December 2012)

Not ready to combine finances (November 2012)

What The Law Will Allow (August 2012)

Making The Right Choice (August 2012)

Baby comes first! (August 2012)

Get the brother-in-law out! (August 2012)

Trust Broken After Cosigning (April 2012)

Review The Research (April 2012)

The Investing Makes Her Nervous (April 2012)

Lifestyle Changes (April 2012)

Do I Tithe On An Inheritance (March 2012)

No Credit Score, No Mortgage? (March 2012)

Where Do Toys Fit In The Baby Steps? (March 2012)

Guilt and Cynicism (March 2012)

Where Does Debt Go When Filing Bankruptcy? (December 2011)

Where Does The Donation Go (December 2011)

Ready to Buy (December 2011)

Intensity Hurting The Marriage (December 2011)

Hobby Car? (November 2011)

Not Quite Dearly DepartedÖ (November 2011)

Enough For Retirement? (November 2011)

Itís Just Another Gimmick (November 2011)

Will Paying Early Help? (November 2011)

Bargain Master! (November 2011)

Sisters Should Have Asked! (August 2011)

Buy Now Or Wait? (August 2011)

So, He Knows How To Manage Money? (August 2011)

Girlfriendís Money Problems (August 2011)

Smaller Down Payment? (August 2011)

Why Canít She Get Another Job? (August 2011)

Landlord Wants Protection (June 2011)

Prepping Kids For Healthy Habits (June 2011)

Switching To Company Debit Cards (June 2011)

Should I Reduce My Tithe? (June 2011)

Closing The Account (February 2011)

Dishonesty Is Not The Best Policy (February 2011)

Piles of Cash? (February 2011)

New Car In A Bad Situation (February 2011)

Drop Coverage? (November 2010)

Can't Pay For Her Wedding (November 2010)

Does Pride Keep Us In Debt? (November 2010)

Not Time For A Reunion (November 2010)

You're Being Hoodwinked! (November 2010)

Buying Used or New? (November 2010)

Is There A Recommended Vacation Percentage? (July 2010)

Donít Do it for the Gas Mileage (July 2010)

Investing Strategy for Retirement (April 2010)

Insurance? (April 2010)

Triple Play Investing (February 2010)

How Do I Get Started in Real Estate (February 2010)

Published: August 2012
Baby comes first!  

Dear Dave,

My husband and I just finished Baby Step 1, and we have our $1,000 in the bank for an emergency fund. Our daughter may have to have kidney surgery in the near future. Should we beef up our emergency fund, or move to Baby Step 2 and the debt snowball?

Noel

Dear Noel,

I know Iím the ďget out of debtĒ guy. I want everyone to experience what life can be like when theyíre debt-free and donít have to send their paychecks out the door to creditors every month. But this little girl may need the kind of help only doctors and hospitals can provide. So, for now, letís push the pause button on your Total Money Makeover.

If I were in your situation, Iíd pile up as much cash as possible. Live on a budget thatís tighter than tight and scrape together every penny you can find. Hopefully, your baby wonít need surgery. But if that kind of thing is a possibility, the only smart thing to do is prepare for the accompanying financial hit your family will experience.

Donít feel bad about this either, Noel. If the surgery is necessary, you guys can jump right back in and start your debt snowball after your little girl is healed. But right now, baby comes first. And if youíve already got $1,000 saved, youíre off to a good start when it comes to handling things!

óDave

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