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Dear Dave,

My wife and I are on Baby Step 2 of your plan. We have about $60,000 in debt left to pay off before we’ll be debt-free, and a household income of $140,000 a year. We have one child, but we would like to expand our family. We would have to do this using in vitro fertilization. We’ve talked to a doctor, and he’s given us a ballpark figure of about $20,000 for the procedure. Should we wait until we’re debt-free to have this done?

Jim

Dear Jim,

Babies are wonderful, important things. Having kids, even the thought of having kids, is a big emotional deal. But sometimes it can cause people to change their financial plans and directions.

I would urge you not to accept the first opinion and pricing model you receive on something like this. I’ve heard prices of $35,000, but that includes as many attempts as it takes until your wife becomes pregnant. I’ve also heard of single attempts priced at $7,500 each. There are all kinds of options and guarantees, because they understand someone who is willing to do this really wants a baby.    

If I’m in your shoes, I’m not accepting the idea that there’s one approach and one pricing structure to all this. I would explore other options, as far as doctors and clinics are concerned. Then, with your income, you could consider taking off a couple months from paying down debt and put some money toward the IVF. If it doesn’t work pay off a little more debt, pause the debt payoff, and try for a baby again.

Take some time, learn a little more, and go from there – always using cash for the endeavor. God bless you two!

—Dave

* Dave Ramsey is CEO of Ramsey Solutions. He has authored seven best-selling books, including The Total Money MakeoverThe Dave Ramsey Show is heard by more than 13 million listeners each week on 585 radio stations and multiple digital platforms. Follow Dave on the web at daveramsey.com and on Twitter at @DaveRamsey.