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    #31
    Originally posted by auron View Post
    From one BSME to another, don't go back to school for a BSEE. It doesn't help your job marketibility at all (in terms of salary or ability to do your job). If you really don't like ME then maybe go get an MSEE with the company benefit. Another engineering undergrad degree simply won't change much.


    I know another bachelor's degree won't change much, but I may eventually try to get my MSEE, but I feel like I don't have enough background in electrical engineering to do well. It would be a stepping stone, as well as temporarily relieving me of student loan payments (I would probably just make interest payments) and if I managed to get any scholarships, it's free money to throw at debt.

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      #32
      Originally posted by disneysteve View Post
      My first suggestion is to fix this problem. You can't afford to have a stay at home parent. Your wife needs to get a job. It doesn't matter if she has a degree or not.

      You should also be looking for a second job to boost your income.

      If you can defer any loans, do so. If you can get any loans on an income-based repayment plan, do so.

      How much is each car worth today in a private sale? Check kbb.com and autotrader.com for estimates. If either car is saleable for enough to pay off the loan, sell it and replace it with something cheap.

      Why are you paying $100/month for cable? Cancel it tomorrow. You can't afford it.

      Let's start there.

      Agree with everything steve said above. Wife def needs to work ASAP (even if it means she has to work nights), sell cars if possible replace with ONE cheaper car (drive each other to work), get rid of cable yesterday. I'll add this, hold off on going back to school until you can get out of debt. Cut off ALL expenses that are not absolute NEEDS. Your situation is tough and will require huge sacifices to get your head above water. You can do it though.

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        #33
        I think there is some denial

        Looking at your budget, I get the impression that it is unrealistic.

        It does not include life.

        Does no one in your family ever:

        Gets a haircut?
        Buys kids diapers? shoes? any art or school supplies, toys, activities? $0.00?
        Pays to renew license/inspection/registration, etc...
        changes tires/oil?
        ever visits a doctor and has a co-pay?
        ever attended a party and brought a gift?
        buy anything for your kid for a Christmas or birthday?
        bought any clothing?
        has cars never needed or never will need repairs?
        the list can go on and on.

        The reality is your family is most likely in the negative every single month, still accumulating debt because you are at exactly take home amount with no life incidentals included. Failing to account for this reality is probably how the debt got accumulated in the first place.

        Sure, you can't afford cable. But even if you cancelled it, it would not change your situation. It is her not working that you can't afford. Even working part time would help a lot.

        Figuring out a solution as a team with your spouse might be the only way to get her to face unpleasant facts without resenting you for it.
        Perhaps if you guys could plan a monthly budget together, she would be forced to make the numbers work or realize that they do not.

        Ask her where does she see your family 5 years from now and how are you planning to get there. What are her dreams and goals for the family?
        Last edited by Nika; 05-18-2012, 07:42 PM.

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          #34
          Here is the list from my budget worksheet. It is not complete because we can cash flow minor things without re-working the budget, but maybe it will be helpful in reminding of other regular expenses that may otherwise slip your mind:

          mortgage
          maintenance
          Student loan
          student loan extra payment
          Life insurance
          garage
          Triple play (cable/internet/phone)

          TRANSPORTATION
          Car insurance
          Gasoline
          tolls
          car maintenance
          MetroNorth
          parking Manhattan/meter

          GROCERIES, HOUSEHOLD, LIFE
          groceries
          work lunches
          laundry
          dry cleaning
          household supplies
          gifts/tips/donations
          house other (furniture, linens, decor)
          clothing
          make-up $ grooming (haircuts, nails)
          Baby stuff

          ENTERTAINMENT
          Entertainment common
          personal/entertainment me
          DH Personal/entertainment
          eating out
          pool fees

          SAVINGS AND ANNUAL
          ROTH me
          ROTH Phillip
          baby college
          vacation fund
          electronics replacement
          Emergency Fund
          unpredictable

          There might be some here that don't apply to you, and some that are unique to your circumstances, like like CC repayment, pet, utilities, yearly memberships/fees, etc...

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            #35
            Originally posted by asmom View Post
            What Steve said. Wait on school. Even if you or your wife get a part-time job in the evenings making minimum wage, you could bring home a mninimum of about $500 a month. Using that money:

            Months 1-7: Apply additional money to Federal Financial. Pay off car. Roll over car payment to other bills.
            Month 8: pay off Chase #1, Chase #2 and Capital One (A).
            Month 9: pay off Sams #1.
            Month 10: pay $750 to Citi
            Month 11: pay off Citi.
            Month 12: pay off Sams #2 and Capital One (S).
            Month 13: pay addl 700 to second car
            Month 14: pay addl 700 to second car.
            Month 15: pay addl 700 to second car.
            Month 16: pay addl 700 to second car.
            Month 17: pay addl 700 to second car.
            Month 18: pay addl 700 to second car.
            Month 19: pay addl 700 to second car.
            Month 20: pay addl 700 to second car.
            Month 21: pay off second car.
            Month 22: pay 1/2 Sallie Mae 2.
            Month 23: pay off Sallie Mae 2.

            Now you got a little more breathing room, no? Another year and you can pay off Nelnet and Sallie Mae 1. Good luck.
            I agree that getting rid of cable service and your wife getting a job would definitely be helpful. Going to school would just end up being a mistake. You would end up getting yourself into more debt in order to give yourself financial freedom? Not a good idea.

            When I decided I had enough debt, I placed my credit cards in a block of ice in the freezer. This kept me from using them because I'd have to thaw them out and that took time. By the time you get them out, you've thought through your purchase already. I wouldn't cut them up in case of emergencies because based on your budget, I assume you aren't really saving money month-to-month and I assume you have no emergency fund in place.

            This website further assisted me with seeing a light at the end of the tunnel. It took about a year, but I'm completely credit debt free. I'm still in school, so I do have some student loans I haven't thawed at yet. But with everything I've learned, I'm not very concerned.

            Comment


              #36
              Late to the party but I agree with the previous posted who said chasing another BS in engineering will hurt, not help, at this point. You are far better off taking the time required by school to earn additional income and get some breathing room in the budget. You are one flat tire or cracked windshield or unexpected medical bill from a really bad situation.


              I'm a BSME as well (~5 years out of school). I started out at $50k as well. I've had two jobs since graduation, and will start my third next month. The first time I was laid of;, this next move is a big step up in pretty much every aspect, and will put me about 50-60% higher than when I graduated. Things do get better with some years under your belt. 3 years of experience goes a long way. Instead of splitting your concentration on another degree . . . bust ass at whatever you do currently, and parlay that into a better position down the road.

              Comment


                #37
                Originally posted by Nika View Post
                The reality is your family is most likely in the negative every single month, still accumulating debt because you are at exactly take home amount with no life incidentals included. Failing to account for this reality is probably how the debt got accumulated in the first place.

                Sure, you can't afford cable. But even if you cancelled it, it would not change your situation. It is her not working that you can't afford. Even working part time would help a lot.

                Figuring out a solution as a team with your spouse might be the only way to get her to face unpleasant facts without resenting you for it.
                Perhaps if you guys could plan a monthly budget together, she would be forced to make the numbers work or realize that they do not.

                Ask her where does she see your family 5 years from now and how are you planning to get there. What are her dreams and goals for the family?
                Sorry, I'm late too, but I think these are important considerations. There are a a LOT of little expenses that will come up no matter what, and you need some wiggle room for those. Kids need new stuff (even if you buy it used) all the time and unless every single thing you get for them is a hand-me-down then there are a lot of costs unaccounted for.

                There are a million and one work-from-home mom sites your wife could check out and see if any of those options will work for her. She could be a virtual assistant, she could do the previously mentioned babysitting thing, she could do data entry. The bottom line is, she needs to be doing something.

                Also, I like the idea of having her work on the budget with you so that she can see the reality of the situation. I don't want to make assumptions but it seems like she may be in denial or at least not quite realize how tight things are.

                Comment


                  #38
                  Originally posted by Incognito815 View Post
                  The cable is cable+internet. My wife strongly disagrees with getting rid of them, as we don't eat out, we don't go out much, but we do watch tv/surf the internet in our spare time.
                  ...
                  Our cell phones are just basic family plan, with 1000 text messages each (keeps her from going over on minutes).
                  You need a bigger shovel for this debt. Without an increase in income, you need to strip down your expenses.

                  I'd get rid of the cable portion of your bill and keep the internet. Put up an antenna and get OTA TV for free, and use Redbox and Netflix to fill the programming void.

                  I'd also get rid of your cell phones and go with a prepaid plan, like T-mobile. This will require changes to your usage habits, like very limited texting and no longs chats. You could always get just ONE cell phone that you'd share, and install something like NetTalk which is internet based land line for something like $30 a YEAR.

                  Just curious: did you know anything about finances prior to taking on all this debt? The 30% car loan rate would make me want to poke something really sharp in my eye.

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                    #39
                    Originally posted by Incognito815 View Post
                    My car: I've had it for 4 months. It's worth about what is owed on it according to edmunds/nada.

                    Her car: It's an 08 pontiac vibe with about 87k miles, and it has depreciated quicker than we've been able to pay it off. I'm pretty sure we owe about 2000 more than it's worth.

                    The cable and cell phone issue just pisses her off if I even bring it up.
                    To fix a financial issue like this, you got to be sick and tired of being sick and tired.

                    I'm not at all trying to insult you, but it really seems like you want to fix a problem that you don't/can't control. (She's carrying the boys around in her purse, get them back!)

                    Seriously though, I was paying $150 a month for satellite TV. I bought an HD Antenna for $85 and got Hulu Plus for $7.99 and a month. I'm paying $143 less per month, and we have everything we've always watched and then some and its all in HD. We don't miss the dish.

                    If she would pick up a job, even part time you could knock those credit cards out fast.

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                      #40
                      Maybe I missed it somewhere, but the op said she was a stay at home mom.

                      How many kids??

                      What are the kids ages??

                      This needs to be known before telling the sahm to get a job. Wont do her any good to earn $80 a day if she is spending $75 (or more) a day in childcare. Also, if she works nights, while the husband works days, and she has real little ones, they can't be let to tend to themselves while she tries to sleep.

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                        #41
                        Originally posted by mom-from-missouri View Post
                        Maybe I missed it somewhere, but the op said she was a stay at home mom.

                        How many kids??

                        What are the kids ages??

                        This needs to be known before telling the sahm to get a job. Wont do her any good to earn $80 a day if she is spending $75 (or more) a day in childcare. Also, if she works nights, while the husband works days, and she has real little ones, they can't be let to tend to themselves while she tries to sleep.
                        So why wouldn't she be able to work a 3-4 hours after the husband gets home from work?

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                          #42
                          Honestly i can't say anything because it is my first time to see a huge money and loan like that.But i think you manage it very well it is important specially when you have a loan..

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