It’s that time of month again….time for my monthly debt update!
As I warned you at the beginning of the month in this post, our income for this month is drastically lower than we’re used to (remember, we live on last month’s income so our income for March is actually the money we earned in February).
Our income is variable from month to month, but whereas we’ve averaged about $7,000ish/month, this month we only have about $4,500 to live on. A huge chunk of that is taken up with non-negotiable expenses (rent, preschool, etc.), so we’ve necessarily had to make much lower debt payments than we have in previous months.
Here’s how things look right now (remember, my ACS bill is paid at the very end of the month, so that’s why it says the last payment was from February):
|Place||Current Balance||APR||Last Payment Made||Last Payment Date||Original debt, March 2014|
|Capital One CC||-||17.9%||-||Paid off in March 2014||$413|
|Mattress Firm||-||0%||-||Paid off in May 2014||$1381|
|Wells Fargo CC||-||13.65%||-||Paid off in May 2014||$7697|
|BoA CC||-||7.24%||-||Paid off in June 2014||$2220|
|PenFed Car Loan||$15489||2.49%||$50||March||$24040|
|Navient - Federal Student Loans||$4256||8.25%||$116||March||$4687|
|Navient - Dept of Ed||$72472||8.25-6.55%||$260||March||$69191|
|ACS Student Loans||$21040||7.24%||$77||February||$21035|
|Totals||$120,610 (Last month = 120,800)||$653||Starting Debt = $145,472|
If all goes well in terms of income for this month, I’m hoping to eradicate the last of the license fees next month. I should also be paying off the larger of the two medical bills (we currently pay 2 separate entities: one $50/month, and one $25/month), so it would decrease that monthly expense down to only $25/month.
I’ve also continued to pay extra every month toward my highest interest student loan (Navient – Federal Loans). It’s a $16 minimum payment, and I’ve been paying $116 every month, including this month. However, I’ve paid minimums on my other student loans, medical bills, and license fees. The other BIG thing that probably sticks out is my PenFed car payment. My car payment is technically $450/month. However, I’ve been paying WAY more than the minimum for a long time in an effort to try to knock down that debt. Because of my pre-payments, no payment is due for over a year. I could have literally paid nothing this month and been fine. So I chose to decrease my normal payment to $50. This covers the interest (plus a little extra), and gave me more wiggle room so I was able to still make a larger student loan payment on my highest interest debt.
It’s a tough thing when you literally don’t have enough money to go around. This month has definitely made me feel grateful that I’ve been so on-top of our debt situation since starting to blog. Had I not been making extra payments on the car, we simply wouldn’t have had enough money for all of our minimum debt obligations. I would have had to turn to using a credit card just to buy groceries and put gas in the car (I’ve been there before and remember those days all too well. Scary stuff!)
Fortunately, I’m thinking that this lower level of income was only a one-time thing (fingers crossed). But, just-in-case, I really feel the need to safeguard us a bit. Getting rid of some of these monthly obligations (like the $75/month license fee and $50/month medical bill) will be really nice. And I CANNOT WAIT until the car payment is gone forever. Although I was able to cut back this month and not make the full payment without any penalties (again – since it’s been prepaid), being able to allocate that $450/month payment elsewhere will feel like a big weight lifted.
If you didn’t have enough money to cover all of your bills, do you know how you would handle it? Do you have any wiggle room with any of your debts?