What kind of sacrifices do you make? - Mothering Forums
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#1 of 10 Old 03-21-2005, 03:16 AM - Thread Starter
 
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We are taking on a big mortgage. It is big because our credit is bad and we have to pay a lot in pmi.
SO, we have to work hard to get our credit good. If we can, our mortgage broker will streamline our mortgage in four months and get the pmi reduced.
So, for the next four months, we have to pay a mortgage $360 more than our rent has been.
At the same time, I want to clear up our credit, which has lots of stupid little things on it.
So, we are going to be in the do nothing stage. I am thinking about cancelling internet. It is only $10 a month, but there is also alot of wasted time. I am going to pull out of the Y, and we are going to go down to one basic cell phone. We would do away with them completely, but we have a contract. I am going to plant veggies and try to bring my food budget way down.
And mostly, we are going to stay home alot.
The problem I run into is that I always feel like we are the only ones sacrificing, ya know? I know other people who say they are broke, but they still buy organic convenience food and belong to expensive gyms. For me, when I say broke, I mean, how do we dress up ramen??
So, I am asking for support!! Anyone else out there REALLY living barebones in order to get your debt paid off and your credit in good shape?
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#2 of 10 Old 03-21-2005, 10:36 AM
 
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#3 of 10 Old 03-21-2005, 11:10 AM
 
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i am all about making my own conveince food. (sorry for the bad spelling I've got to run soon). I make chicken nuggets in a giant batch and freeze them, I make up soups and freeze them, etc. So then when I am feeling like getting take out we can take some of my baked chicken nuggets out of the freezer, throw them in the oven and then over a salad (just lettuce sometimes) and have a great meal.

I am also all about hitting the library for movies. No sacrifice there. I can keep them for a week, my dd doesn't know the difference and heck we don't watch that much anyhow. Also my dd loves to spend a hour or so at the library looking at books, etc.

Personally I wouldn't cut the internet. 10 bucks a month is worth it in terms of emailing my family.

I also have compiled a list of free or nearly free activites for us to do when we are bored. It helps me find something to do so I don't feel totally broke.

My own two cents worth -- I'd try to think of the next few months as how it will be until you get your credit back into shape. Meaning in 4 months when you can cancel your PMI you could potentially take than 400 bucks a month and blow it. But if you blow 100 bucks and put the 300 bucks into something like: debt payments, savings for you, savings for kids, house payments, etc. you wil be able to get your credit into better shape and might find you dont' miss it THAT much. The first two months are usually the hardest to adjust to. The next two were hard for me to stick with -- I'd figure, hey, I'm making all this progress I need to reward myself....

Kristin -- mom of Erin (11/5/02) and Leah (9/29/05)
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#4 of 10 Old 03-21-2005, 11:37 AM
 
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Congratulations on the new house! Our sacrifices: no cable, no cell phones, dial up internet access, no car payments (really old but reliable cars), really infrequent dinners out, second hand clothes. We really don't skimp on food and that costs us a ton each month. We recently bought a half a pig and want to get a cow the same way (from a local pasture farm). Although it is investment up front, it helps with our food bill. I would love to join a CSA but can't afford the up front investment although I think it would be a bargain in the long run. I've thought about hanging clothes to dry instead of using the drying but just can't seem to get around to it.

As far as the pmi, we got around it by taking out two mortgages. We pay 8 percent on the smaller one (which is a lot but at least it is tax deductible). We can refinance once we have more invested in the house. Our mortgage guy suggested this.

Good luck and if you come up with some brillant ideas, let us know!

Mama to two wonderful daughers: 02/03/03 and 10/19/05
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#5 of 10 Old 03-21-2005, 11:41 AM
 
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We really had to work hard to rebuild our credit, and when we bought the house we are living in now, we really cut back.

We did not give up cable, and had one cell phone (I was commuting and needed it for when i was on call for the hospital).

I also worked extra hours to come up with a down payment. It was hard, but worth it.

Good Luck and congratulations on your new home!
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#6 of 10 Old 03-21-2005, 12:55 PM - Thread Starter
 
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thanks everyone
I AM on the fence about cutting out internet.
And good point about continuing to cut back afterwards. I probably will, but right now it is easier to think about it in 4 month increments
My loan officer hasnt said anything about taking out two mortgages. I have heard of this practice, and will bring it up to her. We are way too far into the process to switch brokers at this point though, if she wont
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#7 of 10 Old 03-21-2005, 03:07 PM
 
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I just wanted to say that I've never heard of streamlining a mortagage in four months after you sign the paperwork. Sounds fishy to me and that you might just be getting a really raw deal because of your credit score.

Have you pulled your credit report and score to see what it is? And, have you checked it for any errors? Getting the errors fixed can make a huge difference in your credit score and they say most people have at least one error on their report.

I know you are excited about the house, it is a huge step and a great investment. Before signing anything with that mortgage company did you guys shop around? If you have your credit score you can talk to a number of different lenders (do you belong to a credit union, can you join one and see what they can offer?). Let them know what your score is but tell them you are not authorizing them to pull your credit report until you know whey they can offer you. (each time a lender pulls your report it can hurt your score)

If you aren't locked into buying this house, why not look around for a better lender, spend the next couple of months fixing your credit yourself and then go get a better deal that will save you more in the long run?

Just my $.02.

**Edited to add**
I just saw your note about being too far along the process to change lenders. You're never too far along until you sign the paperwork. You can always walk away (if you lose earnest money it might be a small price to pay to get a good deal on a 30 year loan and save you thousands in the long run). Also, even if you don't want to walk away, she doesn't have to know that and you can try to renegotiate with her if you have another offer from a different lender?
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#8 of 10 Old 03-21-2005, 06:51 PM - Thread Starter
 
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ok, we are trying to call different lenders. I have had this sinking feeling and your post sent me off.
Dhs score is 597. NO errors. We dont have the luxury of waiting right now. The market is going up like crazy. But, we will see if anyone can give us a better deal on the mortgage. We hav 10 days till closing. I dont know if anyone can do a better job or not
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#9 of 10 Old 03-21-2005, 10:51 PM
 
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Hi! Congrats on the house! It can be stressful, but well worth it. We bought our first house almost 2 years ago. We have good credit, but with no deposit we had to take out two mortgages to avoid PMI, which I guess cost less. Our mortgage is really high (in California, Bay area) and we are struggling a lot right now. I know what you mean about feeling like your the only one (well, not the only,but...) a lot of my friends complain about money but drive brand new cars and buy new pretty expensive stuff often.

I am trying to get things under control right now. My husband and I use to both work full time and both made decent incomes. We got very use to eating out a lot, especially after 60 hour weeks, I wasn't about to make dinner and clean the kitchen! Now I am pregnant with our first baby, have changed jobs, and don't make much at all. For several months we have been charging hundreds each month just to get buy. My husband doesn't know that because I take care of the finances. Once our baby is born I would like to be a SAHM or a WAHM. I have to find a way to do it and stop charging. Its mostly unplanned expenses, like my car that we are going to charge $600 to fix this month, our washer that broke last month, and vet bills. OK, I'm really hormonal right now and have been depressed today, so I'm going to rant some more :

I am working on writing up a financial plan. Its hard for several reasons. First, there are things like propane that we only pay for every 3 months or so and contact I only buy once a year, stuff like that that is not consistent each month. Do I save a portion of it each month or plan for a chunk every three months? Its also hard because when you look at things individually like: Internet $10, cable $35, netflix $12, it doesn't seam like much, but it all adds up!

One really neat thing I found is an organic farm co-op. We like to eat organic, but it does add up. Depending on where you live, you might be able to find a co-op. The one by us cost $25 week for a big box of fresh seasonal produce. Definitely worth it & it will save us a lot. We are going to cancel cable soon & are going to try and eat out 2x a month (just at inexpensive cafes). I have started cooking more, especially things like beans, rice, and grains. Also trying not to waist food is a big thing.

Another very important thing we are working on is getting rid of things we don't need (which is hard to do when stress about $) and getting organized. You might be much tidier then us, but when things are disorganized we end up buying things we already have just because we cant find it & that is a huge waist!

Also, we bought a very old, very sub standard house. Mainly because it is on a huge beautiful lot and the other house in our price range where just as bad. If I knew then what I know now I may have done it differently. Really pay attention to the house inspection report and don't fell bad being demanding! My house it driving me crazy right now! From the mold on the ceiling from where the roof is damaged, to the bathroom sink that hasn't worked from the beginning, to the unpermitted rooms, the fact that the whole house isn't insulated and... I'll stop. I know its a great long term investment, but... and yes, a baby on the way...ahhh... I'm usually not this negative, sorry.

*erin*
#1 edd 10/29/05

Happily married, Waldorf-inspired homeschooler to Kylan (8yo), Everest (6yo), and Bodhi (2yo)
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#10 of 10 Old 04-01-2005, 08:48 PM
 
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Congrats on the house. You do not have to stay home alot- there are a ton of free or almost free activities- take this oppurtunity to find them!
We have one car- and no cell phone. It is sometimes unconvienient- but worth it. People got along fine without them for a long time.
I have also stopped buying paper towels and disposable wipes. This saves about 20$ a month for what we used to spend. A little bit here and there adds up.
We cut our tv down to the bear minimum and wish I could cut it all off- but dh says no and we have a contract.
TURN off the lights. I have cut my electric bill by over 30$ just by making sure the lights are always off in the daytime.
Thats all for now.
Good luck!
Emilie
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