fantasma's financial journey

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fantasma
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fantasma's financial journey

Postby fantasma » Fri Jan 01, 2010 10:16 am

hi journal,
i am holding myself responsible for my actions, and so i am going to start working on paying all debts. here are my numbers. i earn after taxes 2049.00 monthly i am able to work overtime every month. i am looking to work an extra 150-200 hours per month. with the way our pay system is i don't get paid time and a half, i get 15.44 straight pay. now i know this looks crazy on paper but i am willing to sacrifice for a time to make as much money as i can to pay this debt off and come out of this journey a winner.

24,000.00 student loans EDIT CORRECTED BALANCE
7000.00 co-signed student loans for husband
[b]3500.00 mastercard credit card 5340.00
600.00 sam's card 807.20
700.00 macy's card 761.86
500.00 gap card 505.00
500.00 discover credit card 611.04
1800.00 AT&T
250.00 Old Comcast Bill


per month for the savings aspect, i intend to save 100.00 for my credit union savings, one hundred dollars in my wachovia way to save. 200.00 goes towards my troweprice 459 plan, the state that i work for puts 8.5 percent of my monthly salary towards an investment plan of my choice. i try to pay most of my bills via debit so that i can take advantage of the way to save program.
Last edited by fantasma on Sat Jul 03, 2010 9:12 am, edited 4 times in total.
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fantasma
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Postby fantasma » Fri Jan 01, 2010 10:28 am

my other bills
500.00 rent including utility&cable
65.00 insurance
60.00 gas
i own my car it's a manual 1996 geo metro.
food 250.0 per month this includes eating out.
100.00 i have to give to my mom per month, i try to pay my stepmom's utility bill and that's quarterly usually about 300.00 these bills are not negotiable. i have to pay them.
i am looking to use most of my overtime money for the DEBTS. i am tired of not being able to sleep at night and having my stomach turn in knots over this.

my goal is to come out of this stronger, smarter and out of debt. this is going to take me at least 3 years to accomplish but i am up to the challenge.
unfortunately my budget is not as cool and exciting as others here, but i hope someone learns from my mistakes. i must admit it's daunting when i read what others make here but i am not concerned about that. i am more concerned about me and what i need to do to fix the monster that i created.
please give me ideas/compliments criticisms i am ready to take them all in so that i can make this journey a great one.
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peachy
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Postby peachy » Fri Jan 01, 2010 1:48 pm

Hi.
Have you considered cutting back etiher your 529 plan (do you have kids?), or only save 100/month in a savings plan, nad put the other 100 towards your debt? It seems that by saving so much (400/month) you're not really helping yourself because the credit card interest is more than you're actually saving.

I see your balances, but what is your plan? Are you goingo to pay the minimums on everything and everything else goes to one card?

I hope you have closed those store credit accounts. You don't need those accounts, and obviously you like to shop. Those store cards will get you into trouble. What about your husband's contribution to your debt; Is he helping/not helping? Can he pay for the groceries so you have some room to breathe?

Writing everything down is a good step, but you need to be more specific as far as the actions you are goin to take. You may not get overtime, so you can't count on it. You should work with what you have and then the overtime pay should be an added financial bonus. We're here to help! Keep posting.

CecilyC
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Postby CecilyC » Fri Jan 01, 2010 2:42 pm

Hi there,

I'm with peachy. In this economy you can't always count on overtime, so plan out how to do this without the extra money, then treat the overtime money as a windfall and send it to the debt right away.

And it would be helpful to hear which debt you are going to tackle first and why. Some people attack debts highest rate first (to minimize interest paid), some people attack them smallest amount first (for psychological reasons). What are the interest rates on the student loans and the credit cards?

Check my math on this, but at 2049 a month, minus all the expenses listed, you have $599 left over for paying bills. How much of that will be left over after you make minimum payments on all the loans and cards?

Do you have an emergency fund? If your 1996 car suddenly needs something expensive, for instance, can you pay for it with cash? If you can't do that, then you will just have to run the cards right back up again when something unexpected happens, and there goes all your progress....

Good luck and write back!

fantasma
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Postby fantasma » Fri Jan 01, 2010 6:01 pm

hi peachy!
i wrote the wrong plan it's actually a 459 plan for retirement. no kids. i stopped using the store accounts. i am not going to use my husband's salary b/c he doesn't care about credit. but that's another story. i will cut back on the take outs and try to cook more. after i contact the credit card companies i will update w/my minimum payment and how much i hope to pay extra w/overtime. i am looking at about 450.00 for all credit cards but his student loans i gotta pay for it from my ot i think. i will sit back and take what you have said so far....i did't think about the savings part that way.
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fantasma
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Postby fantasma » Fri Jan 01, 2010 6:16 pm

hey cecilyc,

i have been dreading the calls to the credit card companies (i am so ashamed),but i will do that in the next week or so. i am thinking of attacking the cards w/the highest interest rates first. i have nothing in an emergency fund. if the car has an issue i will either catch the bus or walk in order to make it. (this past week i had to do that.)
i don't know what the student loan interest is for me but will have it at the end of the month. i just got out of one of those collection agency programs i had to pay 335 a month for 9 months. they are going to send me my new monthly amount b/f february. the reason why i put faith in overtime is b/c as long as the economy is bad i will get overtime:and in the state that i am in its going to be a while b/f the economy picks up again.
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DoingHomework
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Postby DoingHomework » Fri Jan 01, 2010 10:34 pm

Fantasma, I applaud your enthusiasm. But is it really realistic to work 150-200 hours of OT every month? That is more than 16 hours a day including regular time. I would worry that you would be so run down and stressed from doing that that you would get sick. It's probably something you could do for a month or two (and I have) but it becomes exhausting very quickly and your productivity sufferes to the point that your employer may want to cut you back.

fantasma
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Postby fantasma » Sat Jan 02, 2010 6:40 am

thats definitely something to think about, your right about burning out. If i see its too much i will pull back and do less hours but i will do some amount of overtime nontheless to send that money towards debt.
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CecilyC
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Postby CecilyC » Sat Jan 02, 2010 7:19 am

fantasma,

I'd say make it your first priority to save up, say, $1000 in an emergency fund. That gives you some breathing room.

I know how you feel about dreading calling credit card companies. Heck, in 2001, when I foolishly ran up $8K of debt in one year, I didn't even want to open the statement envelopes! But actually, once you have faced it, it's not so bad. At least then the monster has a shape and you can make a plan to kill it. (I killed mine in about 18 months, once I got serious.)

Your statements should tell you what the interest rates are for each card. You don't have to call the companies for that.

Shame is useful if it keeps you from ever getting into this situation again. But don't let it paralyze you. You'll feel much better about yourself once you have started to pay the debts down, and you will make better progress with a plan. So get informed about the rates and the minimum payments and actual balances on those cards, write it all down (post it here!), take a deep breath, and figure out a plan for 2010. You can do it.

And there's no shame in having student loan debt, so really the monster to face right now (unless your student loan rates are outrageously high, or headed skyward soon) is the credit card debt, because the interest rates are usually higher. If the numbers you quoted us and my math are accurate, you've got about $5600 in credit card debt. Compared to what I did, or what some other folks on this forum have dealt with (check out dtr's and snowballer's threads), that's actually not horrible at all. You can handle that, even without the overtime. It just takes an income, a plan, some discipline, and patience.

fantasma
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Postby fantasma » Sun Jan 03, 2010 2:52 pm

i went online to check my credit reports. :evil: :? :shock: :shock: :shock: its all my fault.
once i get the other two via mail i'll keep you posted, but the one that i see now is (pathetic).
i will have to update how much i owe, it's more than i initially thought. :( :( :(

i will not do this for my next thirty years. :idea: :!:
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InterfaceLeader
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Postby InterfaceLeader » Sun Jan 03, 2010 11:39 pm

Though I agree that eventually you will burn out, I will add that I managed to work a 58 hour week for just over a year (a full-time job, plus a weekend job). I wouldn't recommend it - it took a while to rebuild some friendships - but there was no lasting damage from it. I think it's easier if you work weekend days, rather than extremely long week-days (I don't know if that is an option where you work).

Good luck ! Having read many of the journals here, it can be done!

fantasma
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Postby fantasma » Tue Jan 05, 2010 10:46 am

update on payments! interest etc...all of these accounts have been closed! i start making payments next week monday!

citicard 200.00 per month for two years
sam's club 156.44 per month for 5 payments
discover 152.76 for 4 payments
macys can't seem to get in touch with them. edit: with macys i set up to pay 113.23 on 1/11/10 and 113.23 on 1/29/10
4 payments of 133.85
gap can't seem to get in touch with them.
still waiting on how much for student loans.
Last edited by fantasma on Tue Jan 05, 2010 11:49 am, edited 1 time in total.
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tazdollars
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Postby tazdollars » Tue Jan 05, 2010 11:02 am

I don't think you're going to have any sort of long-term resolution until you and your husband get on the same page about money. What exactly is his problem?

fantasma
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Postby fantasma » Tue Jan 05, 2010 11:29 am

tazdollars wrote:I don't think you're going to have any sort of long-term resolution until you and your husband get on the same page about money. What exactly is his problem?


we're going to separate, so it doesn't matter anymore. he thinks he should have savings b/f he starts paying off his debts. he doesn't care about his credit.
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DoingHomework
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Postby DoingHomework » Tue Jan 05, 2010 11:35 am

fantasma wrote:we're going to separate, so it doesn't matter anymore. he thinks he should have savings b/f he starts paying off his debts. he doesn't care about his credit.


I hope if you are separating that you make sure HE pays back the student loan hat is his at least! If you divorce then the decree can enforce that it is no longer your resposibility (I think) or you can make the payments so you know they are being made and have him forced to pay the payments to you as alimony. While it would be nice of you, there is no reason you should pay his student loans for him if you are splitting.


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