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Trying your forum: 12K in debt (groan!)

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  • rlk67
    replied
    thanks for the input

    Schooling isn't an issue. I'm not offended, I appreciate what you wrote, but it's not an issue, and public school has never and will never be considered for personal reasons.\. Everything works around that.

    Leave a comment:


  • samuelwright
    replied
    hi, rlk67. As others have noted here, one of the biggest problems (that you are working on, thankfully) is that you don't exactly know what you are spending your money on. The good news is that you can improve (as we all can!)

    I do want to challenge you on the reported need for private schooling. I do this with the best of intentions - in an effort to help, not unduly criticize you. There are cases wherein children with certain special needs or ailments certainly require private schooling.

    Is the private schooling a *preference* over public schools? This particular topic is of great interest to me as I've worked in higher ed for the past 15 years. The research in the area of private vs. public primary/secondary schooling is rather comprehensive.

    Prior to a post-secondary education (i.e., College or University education), the research reveals that children that receive private schooling are not any more significantly likely to excel in post-secondary education than their publicly-schooled counterparts.

    We do see a significant difference when we exam the post-secondary (College and University education) in select fields. But, alas, private schooling generally does not offer better educational outcomes than public schooling. Parenting, and other social factors, are more influential.

    That all said, I recognize there may be some instances wherein private schooling is needed I mentioned previously. So, I'm not trying to make assumptions.

    Leave a comment:


  • rlk67
    replied
    Nothing lasts for ever...except debt?

    I was hoping by time this thread was finished, I would've paid off the debt. No luck, so onwards I go.

    I'm transferring the 12K to another credit card (by the credit union which also has my car loan). It's a Visa, promotional 0% for 18 months, then 10% after (still lower than the 13% now). I don't p-p-plan (gulp) on using this card further. 4K of my 6k tax refund will go toward this debt, but I feel like I must have a better emergency fund.

    Any advice? Thumbs up, or did I just ruin my life?

    Leave a comment:


  • rlk67
    replied
    ...and part of mystery state got wiped out during Sandy.

    I adjusted w4s to say No Federal Withholding. I'll know next week how that makes a difference.

    I thought I was paying a ton of state property taxes. My mortgage is $2000, but if this were a really normal state (anyone figure it out yet?), my mortgage would be more like $1500 or lower.

    Leave a comment:


  • LivingAlmostLarge
    replied
    So you aren't paying a ton in taxes, i'd look at your spending more carefully. I bet you weren't expecting that since you thought otherwise. You are not in that category of people paying a lot in taxes but getting more back. That being brought to light it might worth looking at what you really have as income if you have a refund.

    Leave a comment:


  • autoxer
    replied
    Originally posted by rlk67 View Post
    So we're getting a 6k refund, but the house didn't matter so much. It helps, but we're still obviously quite in debt, and need to do major budgeting.

    I was told to tell my employer "No federal tax withheld", and next year, we'll still have a 2k refund. My acct didn't charge too much b/c of my situation, and i'm happy to have him.
    That's good, you can knock your debt in half with that refund. And if you can adjust your withholding down to only what you owe, that would give you an extra $500 per month.

    Leave a comment:


  • rlk67
    replied
    a little help

    So we're getting a 6k refund, but the house didn't matter so much. It helps, but we're still obviously quite in debt, and need to do major budgeting.

    I was told to tell my employer "No federal tax withheld", and next year, we'll still have a 2k refund. My acct didn't charge too much b/c of my situation, and i'm happy to have him.

    Leave a comment:


  • rlk67
    replied
    w4: Thanks for your responses

    We have 7 kids. We're working on the charges. Kids need a diet. Never heard of Tax-turbo.

    We think in our workplace, our employer is reluctant to let us put more than 9 on the w4 because something then goes to the IRS. However, my wife also works, and she's at 5 or 6, so I can raise her to 9 (we work at the same place) and use the extra change for...hmm...tubo-tax?

    Leave a comment:


  • LivingAlmostLarge
    replied
    We are married as well with 2 kids and get nothing back. We pay. We make too much for the child tax credit, hence why I say please don't say you pay taxes. If you can get the child tax credit trust me you aren't paying a ton. Not that the tax credit covers the cost of kids.

    Yeah I'd dump the accountant for $300. Turbo tax $49. It'll give you a better handle on your finances to see what you really pay in taxes and what you really spend.

    If you've been charging all these months I'd sit down and look at the charges. How many kids do you have? If you are working do it during a break or lunch or commuting. Since you have daycare are they there from 7-6? If not then leave them and work on finances for 1 hour a couple of days. I find people who work and utilize a daycare have more flexibility to get time to do stuff than parents who always have their kids underfoot.

    Leave a comment:


  • TheMom
    replied
    We are married with 3 kids. Doing the form gives us 9 exemptions. It's not enough, so we put down 13 and it's much closer. We still get some back, but not a lot and we're good with that. How big of a refund do you usually get? If you can set your budget and get spending on track where you are living within your means and working towards paying off the CC, then use the refund to pay it down.

    If by changing your exemptions gives you more per month and you just spending it on whatever rather than adjusting your budget, it's not worth it. You really need to spend less than you make.

    Leave a comment:


  • rlk67
    replied
    Hmm...300 is a lot isn't it...

    My acct. charges 300. Is that the first expense to go? I have no time or ability to figure out how to get the amount of refund that he gets for me. (I dont' know if that fits my category of 'most people' or not.) Maybe when my kids are married, I'll have more time.

    I am certainly most concerned about my debt, but should I panic and cry?! I mentioned above that I can't afford the price of a nervous breakdown. It is what it is, and I need to deal with it, and all of you have helped me incredibly mucho!

    I have looked over my last two checking acct. statements. Utilities, car, student loan, child care, health care, mortgage, and checks for some home repair. Nothing I can eliminate now. But my CC statement has constant supermarket and supermarket and groceries and groceries and this is a must to start with. And figuring out what to do with my w-4.

    I only know this because all of you have alerted me to these type of things. My eyes are open much more than a few days ago when I started this thread.

    Leave a comment:


  • BuckyBadger
    replied
    You seem pretty remarkable blase and glib about your situation.

    I'd me a little more serious about this if you want to gt out of debt and avoid getting back into it.

    As far as allowances, and two high earners with no kids, we not only declare the minimum allowances, but I also have an additional $450 a month taken out for taxes. It's all about making the money work out at the end of the year. The actual number you put down makes no difference.

    I'm curious how much you're spending on an accountant. I find it hard to believe that you need one unless you have a seriously complex financial and tax situation.

    Leave a comment:


  • rlk67
    replied
    Whew...i thought we had to have 7 more kids.

    I am in the general category of 'most people' regarding everything.
    'Most People Think...' Yes, that's me. I'm usually proud to be part of the majority, but only when the numbers work.)

    Leave a comment:


  • disneysteve
    replied
    Originally posted by rlk67 View Post
    I'd be afraid to claim 13 exempts unless my accoutant says ok.
    Afraid of what? You can claim as many exemptions as you need to claim to make the numbers work. If you are getting a huge refund, you aren't claiming enough. Most people think it is based on your family size but it really has very little to do with your family size.

    Leave a comment:


  • rlk67
    replied
    We only learn from drill seargants

    I like your comments, and thanks for the run-down, professor.
    You've probably helped me more (directly) than anyone.

    Yes, we do get child credits, which is why we have a big refund at the end.

    I do scratch my head about how I can be 12K in debt since May. I check the statements...nobody else seems to have my CC# (although the bank has called twice about 'suspicious activity', but, yes, that was me who bought gas in some far away Pennsylvania village).

    While I personally don't consider private school a 'WANT' (it's not worth arguing, believe me), I wonder how we overspent on food and as I mentioned, Target/Walmart type purchases. And we have had our share of 'fixing' expenses...burst pipes, slashed tires, impossibly clogged sinks etc. and I try to seek help from HomeownershipfortheClueless.com and other sites to do it myself.

    Last night we agreed to save receipts and write down everything we buy. And maybe we can make sense of it. In the meantime, I thank everyone about ideas about what to drop (my weight, maybe?) and helping me out.

    I'd be afraid to claim 13 exempts unless my accoutant says ok.

    Leave a comment:

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