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G.O.O.D. January '05 thread- Let's go! - Page 4

post #61 of 82
Well, we contacted the CC with the super high interest, citibank, and they say our account went into default in August from a late payment and they cannot provide us with a reduced rate.
I looked back over our records and saw that i actually paid two payments way before the due date just because I had the extra money.

When we requested proof, they could provide none. I am so furious at them. We are paying it off before the next statement on the 5th of Feb.

We have managed to keep our food budget down and not go out to eat at all. We are eating hot cereal bought in bulk instead of eggs and stuff. We no longer rent 3.00 movies a few times a week and I haven't bought anything frivilous.

I've decided that when I am feeling down on life and think yarn will make it all better or a new shirt, I clean some part of my house instead and see just how much stuff we already have, probably bought on CCs that we don't even use or need.

It is working.

I also had a big realization of just how much and how hard DH works and how we are supporting already super-rich companies. That is time away from the family thatwe are just pi$$ing away and a nice baby outfit or some yummy yarn isn't worth that at all!
post #62 of 82

I so agree...

also had a big realization of just how much and how hard DH works and how we are supporting already super-rich companies. That is time away from the family thatwe are just pi$$ing away and a nice baby outfit or some yummy yarn isn't worth that at all!
That is so true and some people never come to this realization. Wow you had quite an epiphany. I just realized that with our adoption coming up we need to not rely on the bank to get us a loan but try to fast come up with the money to pay a big chunk down. So no more eating out here. I'm also going to start selling some of my household crap on ebay to try to make some extra. I have so many toys when the sw came to do the homestudy she commented on it. I eyeballed quite a few to get rid of at a yard sale in the spring. I might try to ebay it first not sure if the fees would eat up all the profit. We'll see. My dh has been at his job for 14 years and he's sick of it. Too bad we have debt and not enough in savings so he can find something else. That's the shorttimers thinking. Spend what you make. But then you have to work. I'd love for my dh to find something else to do and not have to go back to his job. Won't happen though. He can't make what he makes anywhere else. Dreaming here.

Love Dave Ramsey. He came and talked at our church before he got so hugely successful. He's a sweet man with the right attitude. I acctually took his course and am still in debt. But most of it is business related. I'm sure he'd look down on that too though. Sigh it always feels like I'm starting over with staying out of debt (err getting out of debt). Love this thread. Keeps me thinking about my debt instead of not worrying about it at all.
post #63 of 82
Thread Starter 
Wow- we're all doing so well with our baby steps toward GOOD. Kerc- great self- control on the purse. I resisted a slipcover for our playroom couch with dh's help yesterday.

morebabies- ROCK ON! GREAT idea about cleaning when you want to spend money, that would help all the way around. So true that we have so much junk we don't need. I cleaned my cellarway the other day and found like 10 rolls of red crepe paper, like for decorating for birthdays, WTH? What do I need 10 rolls for? I'll tell you, I kept buying it, b/c I didn't realize I had it already b/c my house is so cluttered. I always figured our clutter was not that bad, I mean compared to the people on Clean Sweep and stuff we are great, but seriously- if you don't know you have 10 rolls of red crepe paper- YOU HAVE CLUTTER! :LOL

So- my GOOD news for today- by the end of next month- we will have all of our CC debt on 0% interest cards, actually- one is on 1.9%, but close enough! And- all of those rates are good until Dec.- so long as I don't make any payments late, which I WON'T!

This means we will be half way out of debt by the end of this year, when only considering dh's salary and not my babysitting money or ebay money. So- maybe we'll be even more than half way out- which is huge when you consider how much debt we have.

Now- let's just hope taxes don't kill us, and hey- maybe we'll even get money back, we always used to- until last year when we owed, b/c GW had given us the money the summer before for the child tax credit.

Blah Blah Blah, I am rambling. I am so thankful to have you mamas here inspiring me .

I wonder how Piglet is doing? I haven't seen here around in forever, is she still here? I hope she's still out-of-debt, she was our first success story .
post #64 of 82
westernskies: How cool is that! It took you no time at all to save up that first thousand.

Peppermint: Good job on the interest rates!

More babies: CC companies suck! That why we all need to GOOD (oops, I typoed GOOF).

So I need a little help. I know what I SHOULD do, but it may not be quite right for our situation. We have about 12 years left on our 15 year mortgage. Dh is 50 and I'm 37. We've been TTC for 2 1/2 years, with IVF looming on the horizon.

Anway, the shop that DH has rented for the last 18 years is about to be sold, and if he moves to another rental, he'll pay at least 3x what he's paying now. Ouch! One idea has been to cash out of our house, take the money, move somewhere cheaper, and keep his business. The other idea is to stay put (we love where we live), and build him a barn at our house. The question is this: should be take out a 30 year mortgage (for basically double the total we currently owe) to pay for both house and barn (with the idea that we'd pay it off early), OR should we take out a 15 year mortgage. The former would give us some wiggle room if times got tough (my job majorly sucks rocks), but the latter would force us commit to paying it off in 15 years or less. I've been very good at aggressively paying down our current mortgage, and I'd like to think that I'd keep doing that if we opted for the 30 year. With Dh being 50, I do NOT want this mortgage business to last forever...so the 15 year also looks tempting, but a little daunting.

Waddya think?
post #65 of 82
Thread Starter 
I'd probably go for the 30 year mortgage and pay extra every chance I had, but, then again, I'm in major debt- so my opinion might not be the one to go with :LOL.
post #66 of 82
Peppermint, that's my instinct too. I was surprised when DH (who is completely oblivious to financial stuff) suggested the 15 year. Very unlike him, and it made me second guess myself...
post #67 of 82
drumroll please..... we are going to be 95% out of credit card debt within a month! :

ok... so we're paying it off by taking money out from the house, but its worth it! We just heard back from the bank about the appraisal. It appraised for 235K (we bought it for 154K, took an additional 33K for renovations for a total of 174K). Then, we racked up another 15K on credit cards in the renovation. But- we increased the value of the house by 80K!! So we're getting a 1st and 2nd mortgage- the first 174K to pay off the one we have (which was adjustable and now we're going to a fixed) and then a 33K 2nd in cash on 15years. This even includes the 1600 in property taxes we have looming in March which we haven't been able to save for b/c we've been too busy paying cc minimums- not any more!!

I'm beside myself, I'm so excited. This will wipe out our 2 biggest cards and get our little 0% card down to maybe $1500. Our mortgage payment is increasing by $200, but that's nothing compared to the $750 we were paying every month in minimums only.

I want you all to know that i am posting here first... I haven't even called my mom yet! This thread has been awesome support and motivation. I'll definitely be hanging around as we continue to refine our ways, pay off the last card and then work on actually saving.

post #68 of 82
Thread Starter 

That is so awesome newmainer! You will be our next success story, I can't wait until you are all done- until that last $1500 is done, then we'll have a big old cyber-party for you. The best part about cyber-parties is that they are free! You must feel like a huge weight has been lifted.

Hooray! See ladies- we CAN do this, and the work we do towards these goals will stay with us, and we'll never get in debt again!
post #69 of 82
That is exciting news! Yeah for you!!!
post #70 of 82
thanks... it is amazing what a weight I feel has been lifted. I mean *seriously* and we haven't even signed the papers yet .
post #71 of 82
I paid off (and closed) a card that had a $300 balance on it. It's a start!
post #72 of 82

Thanks for the inspiration newmainer and A&A!!!
post #73 of 82
Wow you guys are all doing so wonderful!!
I have a question. DH and I are paying off all our credit cards but one (through our bank low interest we like and want to keep it_with our tax returns (we got a nice one this year). My question is should we close our accounts there are 7. I am going to keep one of mine open because it's in my name only and want to build credit for myself. But should we close the other six, I heard it's bad for your credit to close them all down. But i don't always trust myself. I cut up the cards a long time ago but I have all the account numbers when I get the statements and know the exp dates (isn't that terrible). :
post #74 of 82
ACK!! Ladies I've been missing you!!!

Such news in our home!! Let me get you up to date

In November dh was still working for Citibank and looking for a new job. He had some interviews and such at a church. Things looked promising, but they've been that way before. Right before Thanksgiving dh came hom efomr work at about 9am. He was white as a ghost and just sat on the bed with his coat still on staring at the wall. In a very quiet voice he said, "I can't go back there. They sent me home." He had been telling me that he had real issues with his job. Yes, ppl owed them money. But some had just lost jobs, or lost limbs, had major surgery, had spouses die, and other things. THey had real legit reasons to be behind in their debts (we'fe all been there haven't we...) but he was not allowed to care, empathize, comfort, or discuss. He had to demand money and he couldn't do it any more. I guess he broke down and had an anxiety attack as he walked onto the floor. So, in November dh quit his job.

It wasn't until mid December that we got the wonderful news. Dh had been hired on at the church!! It is a job he loves. He looks forward to going in and even comes home excited

Now, what we are doing financially......

We have paid off one credit card.

We are changing our cell phones. I know they are a luxury but with dh's type of work they are needed. So, our local phone company has a deal right now... home phone, 1500 shared minutes, and high speed internet for 116 a month!!! That is cheaper than we pay now for just our cells!! With this plan we save about 80 dollars a month!!

We get our tax return soon. We should be able to pay off one car, which will drop our insurance plus free up 100 a month. We are also paying off a small loan of 1000 and maybe part of a credit card!!

We are buying a house. This should work out great too. Why?? A city in our area is rehabbing the entire city. We are looking at homes that cost over 200k to build. The city is selling thema t 110k. We are eligible for 35k in grants! Our house should cost about 75k Making our house payment about 600 a month which is 125 less than our last rental!

Thats enough good....now the bad....
Dh's last employer mailed us a check at the beginning of the month. On friday they took it back! 368.00 Then we get a letter that says they goofed and we still owe them 268!! (We are fighting this)

We were in a car accident before xmas and had to borrow from my sister the 500 deductible.

We borrwed 500 from a friend to cover the 368 that the company took. We were given NO warning. They just took it out. It had been in for 14 days already and we had spent it on paying bills. So borrowing the money kept us from having about 18 checks overdraft (we don't use plastic just cash and checks...so much easier to keep track of). At 30 a check thats saving us
540 on just the overdrafts not counting the actual amount the checks were for.

We borrowed 200 from FIL due to the fact that dh was without work for a month.

We were also victims of a pothole, midwest winter raods suck. Now we have to put new rims ont he car because 2 of them are bent and wont let the tire hold air.

So, in a matter of 2 weeks we went in debt 1500.00

That really sux Whenever we finally start to get ahead we just crash even harder.
post #75 of 82
Originally Posted by morebabies
Well, we contacted the CC with the super high interest, citibank, and they say our account went into default in August from a late payment and they cannot provide us with a reduced rate.
I looked back over our records and saw that i actually paid two payments way before the due date just because I had the extra money.

When we requested proof, they could provide none. I am so furious at them. We are paying it off before the next statement on the 5th of Feb.
I just asked dh since he worked collections for Citibank. He said it doesn't matter what you can prove it is all based on THEIR system. He said it has a name but can't think of it... He said you have to have 6 months of on time payments and they will lower the rate. It has a name though. He says they make big bucks off of it though.

He also said that even if you pay it off and use it again within the 6 months you wills till have the higher interest rate.

I agree...I hate Citibank too!!!!
post #76 of 82

Joining the GOOD girls ;)

OK, my df and I aren't quite to the getting out of debt part, we're at the step before it: learning to manage money. We've been irresponsible with our money for so long, and it takes a lot of guts for me to say that.

Here's our situation: It's me, dd, df and my granny in a teeny tiny apartment with a kitchen, bathroom and 2 "other" rooms (no real bedrooms, no living room, etc). We pool our money together every month, which right now is df's paychecks and granny's social security and pension checks. I haven't worked since having dd so I feel like a bit of a mooch but I am hoping to start work here in the next week or so. Right now our rent is $350 a month plus gas @$100 a month and electric/water at $80 a month, so essentially we pay $530 a month. We're behind on several bills (including rent) because of bad money decisions made by all of us and we never have any money left by the last week of the month. That's not even getting into our debts

So, starting in February, I am taking charge of money management in our house, that way we're all on the same page and all essentials get paid, we have food, meds, etc and start paying off our debts. Once we get our basic bills paid up to date I'm going to start looking for a better place to live (one which has actual bedrooms, as I can't work when we have company due to the nature of my job). I'm hoping to find a rental with utilities included, which by looking through the classifieds shouldn't be too difficult...I hope.

I'm working on a menu for the month, so we avoid our usual take out habits, and so far, most of the meals i've got on here are pretty low cost I have quicken so now I'm tracking our expenses (also going to get little notebooks to use while we're out running errands or while df is at work). I'd love to find some good (and cheap) recipes... I got a crockpot for Yule that I'm itching to try out!

Anyone have any tips for a newbie to the thread? (I'll also be visiting the frugal forum once it's up- can't wait!)
post #77 of 82
newmainer and A&A:

it's our family....lots of stuff in your msg. congrats on the job, etc. One thing that kinda stuck out (because it is true over here!) was that due to the job situation you had little money in savings and that's costing you more money in the long run. My goal is to have the rainy day fund...for emergencies - like potholes. Also I pay extra each month, but right now I it is easier for me to come up with a predictable extra 10 bucks a month vs. 500 bucks in a deductible, KWIM?

I sewed up the purse this weekend and ya know what? I don't like the size anyhow -- so yeah! for not spending $$ on it.
post #78 of 82
Thread Starter 
Megan- Congratulations on the job! I agree with Kerc, this is, for us, the #1 reason we HAVE to grow a small savings prior to throwing more toward debts. Most of our debt is due to not having the savings when something random happened.

Kerc- while it stinks that you sewed a purse that you don't like the size of- at least you didn't spend the money, and hey- maybe you can give the one you made to someone as a gift

CryPixie83- welcome to our thread, it sounds like you are getting started right, we have had these threads going since last summer, so search the forum for them and get lots of great ideas on getting started. Your Money or Your Life is a book that most here got a lot from--just borrow it from the library- don't buy it .
post #79 of 82
kerc-- That is what we used to do. I pay over every month on our car payments. I have done ti so long that in the books our carpayment is 300 not the 280 the bank says. I know its only 20 bucks but that can make a big difference. Thats over 200 a year extra.

Unfortunately we haven't had a job since our first 2 or 3 months of marriage where we make enough to pay the bills. We're hoping that getting this debt pd down will help us do that.

I figure our next paycheck has an extra 900 dollars. Dh and I have alreayd discussed it and 600 goes in Savings. The other is food and gas.

I go grocery shoppping today and we'll see how it goes. Gotta love/hate meal planning.
post #80 of 82
to all of the success stories I just read! They are certainly inspiring and keep me on the right track.

IOF- I am glad that your DH found a job he is happy in now. What a change that must be for him. It sounds like you have a good plan to start a small savings fund- that $600 will definitely help in the case of an emergency.

We have a $1000 fund that I put back this month just for that. Having lived for 4 years with my DH with NOTHING in savings- just that "little" $1000 has improved my morale when it comes to the finances.

I decided to put a for sale sign on my Toyota 4 Runner this weekend. That was hard for me to do... My DH & I met through our love of 4wheeling, and we have always had 2 "play" trucks to go in. I love driving as much as him. But the truck is not going to get much use at all over the next year. With a new baby on the way- we can no longer fit 6 of us in it- only 5- so I decided it should go. I paid for it straight out, and the insurance is only $100 bucks a year for both of us, so it isn't really costing us anything- but I think the money I get from selling it going towards bills is a better choice right now. We have a few more payed for toys that we talked about selling this weekend too. A boat and a tent trailer. Both need a little work and we will be able to sell them for a good price I think. More than we paid for them- so that is a plus.

I filed our taxes last night and we will be getting a refund check in the next few weeks. I know that if I stay on track with the Dave Ramsey plan that we have been doing that the money should go towards our debt. I am thinking at this point some of it will, and then some of it will go towards some much needed home improvements. Not wanted- but truly needed. I think I am ok with spending it that way.

Thanks for posting your journeys here! It really does keep me inspired. I can't wait to do a January total for how much debt I have paid off this month so far.
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