Tuesday, February 27, 2018

Tuesday,What makes a difference?

     This flu is a bugger.  I did get a little sewing done yesterday, but it is slow going I tell you. I did get quite a bit of work in yesterday and with my 5 Wedding dresses I am really in the groove.  However the energy and drive to jump right into the shop is still not there.  It is frustrating to say the least.  I am just taking it slow.  I will do as much as I can and that is it.

     Hub's and I need to go and get a new toaster and a mat for the front door.  I also need to stop by the insurance office today.  This is if I can convince myself to make myself presentable.  This is a big IF.  Mom really needs to get out of the house as she is getting grumpy. I am sure once these errands are complete I will be wiped out.

     The weather just has not broken.  It is still colder than normal.  We usually have really wet springs.  I just want to get outside in the dirt and I don't see that happening for a while.  It has me a little discouraged.  I am sure that this foggy flu brain will clear up in another day or two.

     Laying around with fever brain allows you time to think.  I know I am really starting to make progress on my debt and this makes me so happy.  I am trying to think of why this time I have not given up.  Is it because I am older and wiser?  Maybe?  Or is it because I feel that I have no choice?  Not really. I really think the difference is that I know I can.

     As many times as I have tried before and remember this has been a 30 year journey, I have had factors  that really made it hard for me to stay out of debt.  The first was having kids at home and actually having more children.  Kids are expensive and college is expensive.  Just getting the girls out and on their own has really helped my bottom line.  Now the oldest has been out for almost 20 years, and she has by far always been our easiest  as far as finances are concerned.  She is a very self sufficient child.  She also lived through the very lean years of our lives.  The younger two were pretty oblivious.  By the time D#2 was out and could notice what life was all about D#1 was in high school. 

    So getting the kids raised has really helped our bottom line. I have always said I could have done better, but I don't regret the money spent on helping them get a good education.

     The second thing that has made a huge difference is not having a car payment.  I cannot say enough about how this can really free up money to pay debt.  If we can just keep these two old cars going for a couple more years we will really be able to achieve our goals.

     I know that the snowball method for debt is a great tool.  But I used the what payment is the highest method to attack our debt.  Paying off the cars early even though the interest rates were lower freed up over $700.00 a month to attack debt.  Getting the studio lock paid off gave me another $150.00 toward debt.  The house/sewer loan has a payment of $350.00 a month, so when that is paid off we will have that additional large sum and the debt will really start to drop.

   If you are struggling maybe the method of attacking the larger payment is a better option.  I also realize that we don't have 8-10 high interest CC's with large balances.  So this method may not be feasible for many.  It has however worked for us.  Once the Home/sewer loan is paid off, any smaller bills will be easily wiped out.  The interest rate on our personal bank card is only 6.56% so very low compared to others.

     The third and probably the most important part of our success so far has been the keeping $1000.00 in an emergency account.  Every time I have let that go, debt has crept back into my life.  Right now our emergency account is low, so that is the first thing I will work on in this coming month.  Part of it was used to pay the accountant and the dentist.

     I hate to stop my debt pay off to fund this account but I know the consequences of ignoring this important part of a debt pay off strategy.

Now if I can rank these in order of importance.

1. Emergency fund
2. pay off cars and keep them paid off, keep them running, do not be tempted to replace them.
3. raise the kids.  If your kids are small they won't notice you cutting back, if they are teenagers, they can get a part time job, they can also get good grades for scholarships.  Your children are a great blessing to you, and they are expensive, ask for help from them, explain your situation, you might be surprised by the ideas and help they offer.

Have a great and productive day, staying positive while you are in the negative.

Kim


19 comments:

  1. I get where you are coming from when it comes to paying off debts with larger payments. I also view it as freeing up money for the tighter months. Once our next two debts are paid off (both at $2400) we will be looking to see if a recalculation is needed in our method of attack. Thankfully most of our debt is now at zero % or very low interest rates.

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    1. It is wonderful to get something paid off and gone, and the lower interest really helps. Here is to us!

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  2. I struggle with the concept of the debt snowball, but I want that win to keep me motivated. I am so excited that one of my debts will be gone in a little over 3 month. After this Friday, there will be 7 bi-weekly payments left.

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    1. I bet you can hardly wait. Heck I can hardly wait.

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  3. I applaud you for keeping yor goals front of mind. Remember you are not doing without when you pass on a treat, new clothes, etc. but choosing to invest elsewhere. It reallly helps me to remember my bigger dreams to not feel like I'm always saying no to myself.

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    1. I have so much that passing things up doesn't really bother me any more.

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  4. I am so impressed with your strategies and successes!

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    1. Why thank you. I wish I could go to an estate sale with you, I could blow my whole strategy.

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  5. I like the way you operate! I am fortunate that my second husband believed in paying cash for everything so had no debt when he passed away. That has helped me so much since then as I have very limited income. In a way, I do the opposite as he did by charging everything, BUT, I pay the whole bill when it comes so that I do not pay any interest. I was so tempted to pay the minimum on my last bill. Even though the only things that were charged were the med refills after the first of the year. With medicare, the deductible is $405 for the year, and my total for the month was almost $600! Thank goodness most of them were for 90 days so I have a little time to catch up until the next refills.

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    1. You were blessed to be left in such a good position. It is also hard when you can't earn any more.

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  6. I agree with you totally. Especially the cars - I've always bought used and my truck was 20 years old but had very low mileage when I bought it. Lasted me 5 years in which time I was able to save up for a replacement. You are, and have been, an inspiration!

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    1. Thank you, I just want it gone. Gone forever.

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  7. Hmmmm....I am the cheapest child? Well not any more! Ha ha ha!
    Hey everyone want to turn your oldest child into a neurotic attorney? Raise them in quasi poverty. (By the way in the Lewiston school district standard hot lunch tickets are orange but free hot lunch tickets are yellow.) Never again I tell you, never again.
    Quit being so hard on yourself mom. Without you I never would have had anything. Especially the work ethic to get myself out of the constant circle of broke, recovering, then disaster.

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  8. Kids are expensive but worth every penny and they give you grandkids! ;) My biggest budget weakness is buying things for my grandkids. I am that Grammie that spoils them rotten. ;)

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  9. Hang in there my friend!
    Blessings,
    Laura

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