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Posts tagged with: debt update

Hope’s December Debt Update

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It is time for another debt update. But I’m really excited about the one to come in January. You will notice that other than eliminating my Amazon debt, very little has changed in my debt load since my last update. Per my Plan #1, my goal is to pay off the computers by the end of the year. I’ve been paying the very minimum required on all debts in order to meet that goal. I’m still on track but it is going to be VERY, VERY close.

Creditor
Balance

(as of 10/14/17)
Interest
Min. Payment
Car$9,3147.00%$308
Credit Card$4,47517.00%$36
Summer Camp (2018)$3,3750.00%$0
Student Loans$34,3492.88%$307
Computer Equipment$2,71322.90%$84
Taxes (State)$5,8000.00%$100
Self Lender$97010.57%$97
Collections 1 (Medical)$618
Collections 2 (Apartment)$499
Collections 3 (Ex-husband)$6,2606.25%$246
Amazon$026.99%$0
Total$66,273$1,178

Meeting My Deadline for Plan #1

To make it happen, I have stopped paying on the kids’ summer camp. We’ve also continued to mostly eat through out pantry which means other than canned veggies we are down to almost nothing in our kitchen.  The kids are not too thrilled with me right now.

empty pantry
Today I will surprise them by restocking our kitchen in preparation for Christmas. They are going to be thrilled. We’ve had a white board going with a grocery list of all their wants and needs.  I’m hoping I can get everything for right at $150. And if we can make it to the end of the year with those groceries…that will be $200 spent this month on groceries and an extra $400 towards my end of year goal.

We won’t be able to do this again because we really have cleaned the pantry shelves, but it is has really helped this fall with paying off some debt and getting ahead on other things.

Next Steps, New Year

I will review my overall financial plan after the new year. I’ve had some more changes on the job front, but I’m not ready to publish them.  I’ll have a better idea after January on how my income is going to look.

It’s stressful, but I’m making good headway in picking up odd jobs and at least part time stand alone clients.


Ashley’s Credit Card Debts

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I know I’ve been promising a full debt update for awhile now. It’s been harder for me to put together than I had imagined it would be (in terms of psychological distress), so I’ve come up with a “compromise” offer. I’m presenting here today my current list of Credit Card Debts. No, it’s not my full list of debts. But adding in the student loans and IRS – ugh! It just feels too overwhelming right now. I need some “easy” wins.

Unfortunately, our list of credit card debt has grown ridiculously long.

It started early in the year when I got a credit card to do a balance transfer for a student loan (Citibank). This was back when we had $0 credit card debt. I had successfully used balance transfer offers from credit cards in the past for previous student loans and it worked fine. I didn’t think this transfer would be any different. So I transferred $4460 in January 2017 to Citibank. I got a 0% APR offer for 21 months. Since the transfer initiated January 2017, it will be due by October 2018. I don’t want to miss that date, otherwise the interest rate soars!

Summer 2017 Happened

I’ve talked many times about the perfect storm of issues occurring in summer of 2017. I stopped my part-time job; hubs’ business shut down, I was weathering some tough personal issues, etc. A mixture of a much lower income than that to which we’d become accustomed, lifestyle creep that had become unsustainable, and sloppy or nonexistent budgeting. Basically just a whole falling-off-the-wagon thing going on in terms of personal finances. I turned to my credit cards that had long been tucked away in a filing cabinet. First it was Target, then Wells Fargo, Capital One, a Home Depot up in the mix. Things just snowballed out-of-control and before August hit, we were swimming in credit card debt up to our eyeballs. This is also when I fell off the blogging train HARD (if you go back and read old posts, you’ll notice posts from me were few and far-between at this point).

Time to Get A Grip

Things still aren’t where they need to be. Hubs has finished his personal training course and has been applying for jobs. Luckily, it’s a good time of year (what with all the New-Years resolutions and so-called “January Joiners” at gyms). There look to be a lot of openings. He’s also picked up some random side-gigs to earn a bit of money the past couple months. Plus selling things online, etc. Every little bit helps. We’re not where we need to be in terms of income OR outflow. But we’re taking some baby steps and laying out our credit card disarray is a good place to start.

Credit Card Debts

Here is our current list of credit card debts, listed from smallest balance-size to largest balance-size.

PlaceCurrent BalanceAPRMinimum PaymentDecember Payment
Home Depot CC$12290% (through February 2018)$40$400*scheduled
BoA CC$24108.24% ($26$300
Capital One CC$299218.9% ($59$100*scheduled
Balance Transfer Student Loan (Citibank CC)$37130% (through October 2018)$55$55
Wells Fargo CC$15,17813.40%$360$400
Totals$25,522$540$1255

Adding up all the numbers for this post caused a sickening feeling. I really can’t even focus on it too long without getting a migraine. I know some of the “yucky” feeling is good because it is what will ultimately keep us from going back to this spot again. But for right now, I have to push it aside because I find my resolve to be too fragile to become bogged down with the “yucks.” I’ve talked before about how much of debt-reduction is psychological in nature (or, rather, how much psychological issues can impact debt payoff). If we are to succeed with digging out of this (again), I need to feel hopeful.

Hope is Ahead

Luckily, I do feel hopeful. I didn’t include it in this spreadsheet because it happened at the end of November, but I recently paid off the remaining balance of our Target credit card. At it’s peak, it reached about $3500 in the summer. Not our highest balance by a long-shot, but the card was maxed out and I had just been making little “chips” every month when the bill was due. In the last couple months, I paid a bit more and was thrilled to send in the final payment late November. It’s such a great feeling to make these tiny wins! The next three cards (Home Depot, Bank of America, and Capital One) shouldn’t take too terribly long to knock out. Then attention can turn to the beast. Can you imagine – my limit was previously set at $14,000. We accidentally went over that limit. And what did Wells Fargo do? Oh, what any reasonable lender-of-credit would do…..they extended more credit. Upped my limit to $17,000. And obviously some of that additional credit has been used (since we’ve now got over a $15k balance). So they’ve won on the battle. But I’m determined to win the war. We’ve been down this road before and kicked ass last time; we will just have to pull ourselves up and do it again.

Thank you for your support and encouragement! I know things look bleak, but I hope you’ll stick by my side as we pull through this mess all over again!


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