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#31 of 46 Old 09-20-2010, 01:49 AM
 
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Do you have medical insurance? Chantix is a drug that can help people stop smoking. It worked for a number of people I know.

What would you need to do to get rid of the car? Your car payment is totally a budget buster, even if you have it for 2 years, please don't buy it after, the payment over 5 years would be about the same as your lease payment. You simply can not afford that. By means of comparison My family earns about 3 times as much as yours and I don't think we could afford a car payment that big. We only pay cash for our car and it has worked out great. We drive a 2005 Camry, before that 1998 corolla.

Also, I don't think your food budget is high. Food is expensive and not something to skimp too much on.

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#32 of 46 Old 09-20-2010, 09:28 AM - Thread Starter
 
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You cannot convince, force, bribe, or otherwise make anyone stop smoking. I would strongly suggest buying him the book The Easy Way to Stop Smoking by Allen Carr. The title might seem gimmick-y, but the content is solid, and this book has been a miracle worker for myself and two of my friends. Seriously. Read the reviews on Amazon...then buy the book ASAP. Even if it didn't work, you will have lost less than what you would have spent on two packs.
thats what im saying! i will buy that book! i did hypnosis to quit and he did it with me but did not believe in it or focus while it was going on so it did not work for him...

we do not have health insurance.

even if the car was expensive WHAT else was i suppose to do? i had a car i OWED $10,500 on and was worth $8000 i couldnt get rid of the thing! our old car expenses were alot more than what we pay no even if we are not in a super cheap ideal situation its still better than before with 2 cars and legit 600+ dollars a month

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#33 of 46 Old 09-20-2010, 01:40 PM
 
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Just because you had a terribly terribly bad situation with the car before and this one is less bad doesn't make it good.

I get it - it's a nice car and it works well. We're just saying it really doesn't work with your income and budget.

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#34 of 46 Old 09-20-2010, 02:40 PM
 
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Ok, I am the odd one out here, but if I were getting $15k I would actually pay off all my debts.

I think you also need to swallow your pride and live cheap. Really, really cheap. That means having no car or a really really cheap one (like a $1k one), ditch netflix and cable, get rid of cell phones and get the cheapest land line you can (should be about $30 a month), get rid of gyum (I see you'r already planning that).

May I also suggest that you tell DH that if he wants to smoke he needs to find a way to pay for it *over and above* what he is making now. That might be selling some stuff each month or doing some odd jobs. It's a lot of money when you don't have any. Or could he switch to rollies? They are a lot cheaper.

Eating well is important for our family too, but we have a hierachy when it comes to organic. Animal products are teh most important, followed by fruit then veg last. So you could buy conventional veg (apart from the dirty dozen) and save some money.

Honestly, I think you really need to get rid of your car. It's killing your budget. You drive a really nice car but can barely afford the basics.

Just remember that it's a temporary solution - you'll only have to live like that for a short time. It's easy to think it's forever...and it will be if you keep living above your means.

I also agree that education is key. You really can't afford to be a SAHM. Many colleges etc offer subsidized daycare or you could hook up with another student mom who has classes at different times and trade.

We also have no family nearby and have zero help. It's hard, yes. But it's also our choice to have 2 kids so we suck it up. There are totally days where it's overwhelming, but we do it.

Good luck!

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#35 of 46 Old 09-20-2010, 03:12 PM
 
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I have never leased a car (as PP said, leases make dealers rich, not drivers!), but there has to be some way to get out of it. I imagine it would be painful up front, but maybe beneficial in the long term. A quick Google shows that most leases have early termination penalties built into the contract, and that many times lease assumptions are permitted. So, you could find someone else to take over the lease on your car. You'd be out the payments that you've already made, but that's what leases are--long term car "rentals."

Also, not to beat a dead horse, but you said you were upside down by $2500 in your last car. Where did that loan balance go? It didn't just go away. I imagine it's rolled into your lease payment, which puts you in an even further negative-equity situation. All you are doing with lease payments (if you don't intend to buy after the lease period is up) is throwing $362/mo into a non-equity building vehicle. You're not getting anything out of this, except a shiny new car to drive. If you *are* planning on buying the car after two years, where is that $15,000 going to come from? If I were you, I'd be really honest with myself and recognize that the $15,000 you get in October is not going to make it two years. $15,000 is over 60% of your yearly income--that's not going to fly with any bank for a loan.

IMO, you should work as hard as you can at reading the fine print of your lease contract and find some way out of it. Post in the newspaper, local forums, craigslist, anywhere you can think of to find someone to take over your lease (if that is allowed). If not, find out what the early termination fee is. Even if it is a couple grand, you'll come out ahead in the long term. This car is costing you $4,344/year. Pay that out of the $15,000 you'll get in October, and find a decent used car to pay CASH for. For $5k-$6k you could get something 5-ish years old and not falling apart that will last you awhile if you take care of it. Take whatever is left and pay down your debt.

I know this is hard, but leasing this car was an expensive mistake to make. I'm not trying to beat up on you--getting so much money at such a young age, it would be awfully tempting to go buy a brand new vehicle. I understand the want for nice things, and I also understand how dealers sweet talk customers into buying/leasing things they can in no way afford--that happens frequently across all age groups. I think it's awesome that you are on here trying to figure out what to do, and I really do wish you the best of luck. For perspective, we make $100k+ in a low COL area and both of our cars are 10 years old. Remember--rich people are rich because they KEEP their money, not because they spend it. I have to tell myself this every time I walk into Target.

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#36 of 46 Old 09-21-2010, 01:11 AM
 
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Stop using the credit cards. Adding to your debt won't fix the discrepancy between your income and your spending.

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also i seem to be a serious compulsive spender in need of help... i just blow like $150 at walmart when i go in to buy 1 thing...
Then don't even go in the store. Let dh know what needs to be picked up at the store and have him do it in cash.

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you think $300 for food is alot?!
Personally, I think it's hardly anything. But with what you're making, $300 a month may be more than you can afford.

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yea i know but the model we got was like $25000. there is no way to get out of it.
This car is more than your yearly income. You cannot afford to keep it.

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#37 of 46 Old 09-21-2010, 08:39 AM
 
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thats what im saying! i will buy that book! i did hypnosis to quit and he did it with me but did not believe in it or focus while it was going on so it did not work for him...

we do not have health insurance.

even if the car was expensive WHAT else was i suppose to do? i had a car i OWED $10,500 on and was worth $8000 i couldnt get rid of the thing! our old car expenses were alot more than what we pay no even if we are not in a super cheap ideal situation its still better than before with 2 cars and legit 600+ dollars a month
See if your library has it. There's no book budget on your budget!

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#38 of 46 Old 09-21-2010, 09:10 AM - Thread Starter
 
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lol very true.

ok so i put ll of the cards in a safe and now am taking out only exactly what i need to spend to the penny for exactly what we need in cash. its a pain in the butt but its well worth it!

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#39 of 46 Old 09-21-2010, 10:06 AM
 
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A prior poster mentioned going car free .... there are very few places in the USA with workable public transportation. Car free might be almost impossible for the OP.

With the Walmart shopping, make a written list and go in there with cash ($20) in hand. It will be much easier to come out with just what is on your list.

Try tracking your spending to the penny for just 4 weeks. It can be an educational experience.

I don't see how you can "make" your husband quit smoking. It is a very strong addiction and he still WANTS to smoke. If he could cut back his smoking by 30 cigs a month that would be a good thing, but even this would be hard if he does not want to.

For baby clothing, you can try church clothing closets, church clothing sales ($3 a bag here), or smaller thrift stores. Start with the clothing closets as 1 year old girl clothing is very commonly available. Some consignment stores can take clothing and give you store credit... use this to try for a winter coat. Craigslist and freecycle may also have clothing available.

For PPD treatment, call around. Maybe you can find a sliding scale therapist. Maybe you can see a doctor at the local clinic with a last minute cancellation. Keep calling around and if one place says no, ask where else you can go.

One more thing - I hope you have a very effective birth control plan. You DO have the ability to take control of your finances right now. Your DH is in school (or will be?) and has a career plan. Things ARE going to get better. It will be easier with just one baby right now.
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#40 of 46 Old 09-21-2010, 10:20 PM
 
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First off, I want to give you some love and encouragement. Just posting all this and getting it out in the open is such a positive step.

I agree with PP about losing the cable, but I'd keep the netflix - if you don't have something cheap to do, you'll wind up feeling so restricted by your tight budget that you blow money, in my experience.

I'm not sure what state you're in - some states require the cable company to offer "unbundled" internet, others don't - that's worth inquiring about.

I know what my husband went through to quit smoking, so I want to applaud your DH's efforts on cutting back by more than half.

Don't beat yourself up over the leased car - you know what they say, "When you know better, you do better." But for now, it seems like you're stuck with it, so, meh.

Ok, so...here is my idea, and it centers around the money you expect to receive: can you invest some of it in infrastructure, to provide longterm savings?

Insurance: would this cost less if you paid for the whole year at once, or paid by the quarter? Call your company and find out.

Gym: you could just pay the fee and get out of it - it's $480 a year, so it's probably worth the money to get free of your contract.

Smoking: your DH probably can't just quit cold turkey. My DH quit a few years ago using those lozenges, and it was a rough 8 weeks. Could you buy him the book that was referenced, and some "quit smoking" supplies?

Phone: if you have the money for a modest initial investment, you can get really inexpensive phone service using something like Skype, Google Voice, or Magic Jack...definitely worth researching. I've seen mamas post about that here before.

Moving: you mentioned this before. If you find something you feel good about that represents real savings (enough to justify the moving costs), that sounds like a good idea.

Now, there are also ways to make a wee bit of money, that can be combined. For example: online surveys, which usually pay in gift cards. And lets say you were at the thriftstore, frugally shopping for your baby, and you found something high end that you didn't want to keep - you could resell it on Craigslist or e-bay. Also, with your schedule, you might do a little babysitting. I'm not saying open a home daycare - just make yourself available to people having a childcare emergency. And, I know a lady who delivers newspapers with her baby sleeping in the car at 4:00 am 3 times a week (she shares the route with another mom) - something like that might be worth investigating.

And your CAR - I heard an article on the news a few months ago about a company in my city (Houston) that "rents" advertising space on cars - you let them wrap your car with the advertising logo for whatever company they're working with, and they pay you a fee for that. I think some of it has to do with what kind of car you drive and where you drive it - but you have a nice new car, so that might be a possibility. I don't remember the details, but googling might turn something up.

About that WIC - is there anything they offer that you can use? Even if you have to donate most of it to the food bank, maybe you could get a few dollars worth of usable food - every little bit helps.

I can tell you're stressed - I hope you're getting some suggestions that work for you!

Last suggestion: are you a member of a LLL group, or a playgroup, or something that gets you in contact with other moms? Loneliness and isolation can lead to depression spending - I remember how much I used to love having something fun and free to do with my baby that involved other moms.

Holly

So...I'm 43 and pregnant with #3 - how'd that happen?  

 

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#41 of 46 Old 09-22-2010, 09:37 AM - Thread Starter
 
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TY Holly for the support.

i live in isolation! the main reason we want to move is b/c hate the city i hate it so much i cant even walk down the street our neighborhood is dangerous and i am so worried about DD all the time. we lived in a different part of the city before and i was attacked physically and sexually in our apartment while DH was at his moms. TG the baby was not born or concieved yet. that was a few years ago...then we moved to a "nicer" part and have a great home but the neighborhood is worse IMO...found a girl on the side of the road a few weeks back that was no longer with us. TG DD is too young to realise what were are living in.
but i do go to a monthly AP mom group and story time at mothers and comapany.
Anyways we found an apartment for $725 thats is a great suburb neighborhood and its perfect! there is one we are going to see in a few days for $650 as well. We found a good realtor who is heping us b/c i could not find anything under $1000 in a 2br in the location we desire, he aparently has hook ups lol. so thats worth it to me!!

we wont have moving expenses. we have the rav and some good friends with pick up trucks and we have empty boxes too
the apartments we have been looking at do not require last or security. (upfront)

well wic could get us produce and beans. i will call them for an appointment..if they even provide that after 1 y/o? idk.

the car thing would be something to look into as long as it can peel off or something TY for that tip

i called the gym and aparently i can not cancle it until after a year (some fine print i missed) but idk i called and flipped out about how i cant even go b/c the child watch people are incompitent (last time the woman was violent with her own child in front of me and the kids) and how i cant trust them...
im fighting to get out of it anyways...
i offered DH that i would buy him anything he needs to aide in quitting.

i do the online surveys too and i dont know anyone who needs a babysitter but i will post something for the area.

im sure it would save some money to pay off the insurance. i guess im nervous to spend the $4500 in case we need it...maybe i should pay it off? its 1700

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#42 of 46 Old 09-22-2010, 05:05 PM - Thread Starter
 
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GOOD THINGS TODAY

1. we got an apartment!!! $725+ utilities but it was also built 10 yrs ago and is energy efficient everything! so we save $125 a month in rent and should also save on heating/gas. no security or last either.

2. found a local farm that has shares for $1000 for the year!!! this includes all organic/free range meat, eggs, dairy (we dont do dairy though), and produce! the sign up isnt for a few more months but wow would that help we are talking $80 a month for meat and produce!! woo hoo

that all sound good right?

 Young born-again mama and loving wife peace.gif to DH jammin.gif and SAHP to two crazy girls dust.gifwehomebirth.jpgfly-by-nursing2.gifslinggirl.giffamilybed1.gif and believe gd.giflactivist.gif  signcirc1.gif !

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#43 of 46 Old 09-22-2010, 06:24 PM
 
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GOOD THINGS TODAY

1. we got an apartment!!! $725+ utilities but it was also built 10 yrs ago and is energy efficient everything! so we save $125 a month in rent and should also save on heating/gas. no security or last either.

2. found a local farm that has shares for $1000 for the year!!! this includes all organic/free range meat, eggs, dairy (we dont do dairy though), and produce! the sign up isnt for a few more months but wow would that help we are talking $80 a month for meat and produce!! woo hoo

that all sound good right?
Sounding pretty good. Maybe you can find out from the farm whether they have anyone who doesn't do eggs and you and that person can switch--he/she gets your dairy and you get that person's eggs. If you want. Eggs can be frozen by scrambling them up, then freezing them (kinda like egg-beaters) to be used in scrambled eggs or when a recipe calls for egg to be added.

And WIC goes up to 5 years old as long as you qualify. You get it for each child over 1. Our baby is 17 months, so we have the "toddler/preschooler package". We get one pound of beans or peanut butter, one dozen eggs, one pound cheese, 32 ounces whole grains--usually pick up brown rice, 3 1/4 gallons whole milk, 2 bottles juice, and $6 worth of produce, and 36 ounces of cereal. I wish the cereal was X number of boxes because we never get the 36 ounces, as we are only able to get corn and rice chex (gluten issues). By prescription, we get 21 6-packs of pediasure. Several years back, we were on it when I had 2 kids under 2, and we got so much stuff that I could feed the family almost completely on WIC. Before age 1, you can get either the fully breastfeeding package, the partially breastfeeding package, or the formula feeding package (formula, jarred fruits and veggies, and baby cereal--great as a thickener in gravies).
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#44 of 46 Old 09-22-2010, 06:44 PM
 
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That's great news!

I got curious about the car thing (we need a new bumper, but after it's fixed I'm going to try this), so I googled it and found this handy looking guide to the whole process:

http://www.leaseguide.com/articles/getpaidtodrive.htm

So...I'm 43 and pregnant with #3 - how'd that happen?  

 

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#45 of 46 Old 09-22-2010, 09:09 PM
 
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About that WIC - is there anything they offer that you can use? Even if you have to donate most of it to the food bank, maybe you could get a few dollars worth of usable food - every little bit helps.

Holly
This... if you or the baby cant eat it, can your DH eat it... IMO it doesn't matter who eats the food, its food in the house and $$ to help with the grocery budget. Years ago when DS was on WIC the free groceries were a godsend at times. The eggs, pb, juice, milk, cheese *I* ate most of it or traded with a nieghbor for free daycare, I think now WIC added in fruits and veggies too. Your DH could have egg omlets, juice/milk for breakfast, PB sandwiches for lunch... there are alot of creative things or 'filler' things to do w. wic and the worst that happens is if you or the baby cant eat it is possibly your DH eats it or you 'trade' with someone for babysitting etc...

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#46 of 46 Old 09-22-2010, 09:28 PM
 
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Originally Posted by sosurreal09 View Post
GOOD THINGS TODAY

1. we got an apartment!!! $725+ utilities but it was also built 10 yrs ago and is energy efficient everything! so we save $125 a month in rent and should also save on heating/gas. no security or last either.

2. found a local farm that has shares for $1000 for the year!!! this includes all organic/free range meat, eggs, dairy (we dont do dairy though), and produce! the sign up isnt for a few more months but wow would that help we are talking $80 a month for meat and produce!! woo hoo

that all sound good right?


Wooohooo!!! Also i you guys are big meat eaters maybe you can buy a freezer and get a 1/4 or 1/2 a side of beef or a whole pig or load up on whole chickens with some of your money! Also make sure your pantry is fully stocked and you take care of any needed dental/eyeglasses/exams/labs/meds you need for the next year.

Resistance is futile Matey
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