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    #16
    I would say it sounds like you need to have a serious sit down conversation with the hubby. If he's paranoid enough to worry about home security to the point of not being willing to give up the security system temporarily, then he should be worried enough about the massive amount of debt to be willing to give up cable sports packages and eating out. Financial insecurity causes a lot more damage to the average person than lack of actual home security.

    I realize that when you spend so much time penny pinching, sometimes you need to be able to treat yourself in order to stay sane. But that should mean eating out every once in a while, or something like that.

    With that being said, I think you're doing a great job of going over the family finances and figuring out how to make extra money and cut spending, it would be easier if the family was on board though. The best thing you can do is make sure that you're regularly keeping tabs on your finances so that you don't accidentally overspend, and to keep you focused on debt repayment. It's especially important when you know that the road is a fairly long one so that you don't get discouraged!

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      #17
      Thanks for the encouragement everyone!

      Eagle, I do have a second job and paying off this debt would be nearly impossible without it! I work every 3rd weekend and a couple of evenings a month, it averages out to be about $600 a month, sometimes more. I have my eyes open at the company I where I am working part time, because they are known for paying more and being a better place to work. Unfortunately, I've only been in my specific field for about a year and a half and need a little more experience. I am taking a test for my professional certification in the fall, and might be able to ask for a raise then.

      The $3500 net is just my income - hubby and I each make about $70K a piece (from our primary jobs). I'll make another $10-13K per year with my 2nd job, depending on how many evenings I can get.

      I did get a quote from Traveler's today (provided through my job) for about $30 a month cheaper than what we pay now, but I looked up their reviews and they aren't great. Lots of people complained that they jacked up their rates for no reason. USAA has been awesome, has never raised our rates unless we got a new vehicle, and even then it was miniscule... I think we'll stick with them.

      I'm making hubby get on the phone with Verizon tomorrow to cut our plan!

      Thanks again, everyone! I'll keep you posted and send you some virtual ice cream when my Chase card is paid off

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        #18
        Originally posted by frugalredhead View Post
        Snafu-

        We do not have an emergency fund, I am going to establish a small one with my next 2 paychecks from my 2nd job. I'd rather not put too much in it when we have so much CC debt that is accruing interest. I have not added up the amount of interest we pay total - honestly, I don't see the point. We know we have a problem, we are addressing the problem by attacking the highest interest rates first, and we wouldn't change the way we handle it anyway, so.... I have looked into getting a 0% credit card and I have too much debt to qualify. I am hoping that as I pay off my cards one by one, balance transfer offers will come up on the ones I already have.

        We just bought me a new vehicle when my old one was 4 years old (I have never heard of a warranty that expires after 2 years) and we are paying less for it that we were for the old one. We also never pay interest on our vehicles; we've qualified for 0% interest on both. My husband puts very little mileage on his vehicle, so his is definitely one we will keep after it is paid off. But I have a long commute and we use the minivan for all long trips, so it gets a LOT of mileage.

        It's not quite true that we are paying interest on things like groceries and gas... I can either use my $400 flex account reimbursement for those things, or put them on my credit card and immediately pay the $400 on the credit card. Now that said, using the card makes it easier to spend more than I want to, which is why I want to stop using the card for that. I do wind up paying interest if I go over what I have the funds to pay off! I am still going to put my kids' daycare on my credit card and pay it off every paycheck, because I earn cash back on the card I use for that.

        We do each have retirement funds and excellent life insurance. Obviously I'd like to be contributing more to my 401K, but put in at least enough to get my full company match.

        Thanks for all of your ideas!
        usually when you get 0% financing on a new vehicle you also payed many thousands more for the vehicle then if you would have bought it with cash. Run the vehicles till the day they die, and buy a vehicle that any mechanic can work on. Why pay 120 dollars an hour for labor at vw when you can pay 45 dollars an hour at a smaller non dealership shop. I think people tend to neglect vehicles as a money problem because its a need in most cases. For my company I only buy used trucks. We just picked up a 2000 dodge dakota with 55k miles for 5k. Will last us 4 years or more. A new truck that will do exactly the same will run us around 18k and will maybe get us 5 years. 13k in savings and it doesnt cost half that to replace whole powertrain.(we also got a 1995gmc sanoma with 75k miles for 3200 dollars and a 2003 ford ranger with 60k for 4500dollars,all super clean and problem free) You can also get fully loaded versions and tell yourself this vehicle once was 40k dollars.

        Also I'm sorry it took you this long to start fighting back against the credit cards but good luck! It will be worth it in the end!

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          #19
          Originally posted by snafu View Post
          Can you add up the amount of interest you have paid thus far 2014 between you and DH? Mortgage, Autos, DH's SLs, Chase, Discover, Citi, Cap.One, BOA, Camper, Sallie Mae etc.
          I second that piece of advice. Whatever level of resolve you have to clean up your CC debt will be doubled if you make this kind of calculation.

          Three and a half years ago, my wife and I had 24K CC debt, with about 40% of your income. I calculated how much interest we were paying in one month. I was already resolved to pay it off, but my jaw dropped. My singular focus was to decrease the amount of CC interest paid each month.

          Just the thought of how much money was going to nothing but interest was enough to make my stomach turn, and keep me motivated. I would encourage you to do the same.

          Comment


            #20
            Originally posted by Bob B. View Post
            I second that piece of advice. Whatever level of resolve you have to clean up your CC debt will be doubled if you make this kind of calculation.

            Three and a half years ago, my wife and I had 24K CC debt, with about 40% of your income. I calculated how much interest we were paying in one month. I was already resolved to pay it off, but my jaw dropped. My singular focus was to decrease the amount of CC interest paid each month.

            Just the thought of how much money was going to nothing but interest was enough to make my stomach turn, and keep me motivated. I would encourage you to do the same.
            This is good advice. I'd recommend it too... Bob how much were you paying in interest a month according to your calculation?

            Here's the account balance... How much interest are you paying a month Frugalredhead?

            Card Balance Interest Rate
            BOA $22,416 @ 12.74%
            Chase $7,600 @ 12.24%
            Discover $11,000 @13.49%
            Cap 1 $24,320 @ 7.9%
            Citibank $5,676 @ 6.99%
            ~ Eagle

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              #21
              I'm back to say, terrific on getting CC down $ 4K in 3 months! I hope you''ll stay motivated and keep posting to let us know your payments for April and how much it's reduced CC balance so we can cheer you on. We're all from difference backgrounds and experiences, please understand that we make suggestions with genuine concern in hopes of being helpful.

              Sure hope you'll cancel your landline and find a way to get DH to agree to lower tier cable service short term...possibly over summer when there's so much yard work and opportunities to be outdoors. Wishing you a fun and profitable yard sale. Where is the take targeted? Many of us are participating in a de-clutter project with the blog group. That might identify more stuff to sell.

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                #22
                Please read the book The Millionaire Next Door. You have a spending problem. I can say that because last October when I signed on to these fora, I was you. Made plenty of money and spent even more. Got a good beating from the veterans here, was thoroughly offended but I did read that book. That changed everything. I have made huge adjustments to my spending and life is soooo much better. I no longer have many things that I thought were very important to me (horse, BMW, 7 TV's, best cable, internet packages, etc…). I was able to pay off all my debt and now spend less than I make while saving a lot more.

                For you, you have to acknowledge your spending problem and work on that very hard as you attack your debt. I don't care how paranoid your husband is, get rid of the monitoring. DO NOT buy new cars. Get rid of the sports package. Get rid of as much expenses as you can. And please do add up all the interest you pay. I didn't do that until I checked on here and when I did, it really helped me justify the lifestyle changes that are required to get better. I still have a spending problem, but it's only a problem I have to deal with mentally, not financially. But once the cost saving thing gets into your head, it gets addictive. I use one Q-tip now instead of 2. Use one end in each ear. That's a 50% savings. Seems ludicrous for a guy that is in the top tax bracket to do that, but it's now how I think.

                Also, see if you can get a Chase Slate card. It is 0% interest and no transfer fees. You may think you have too much debt, but they gave me one when I had more credit card debt than you do. Worth a try. If you apply for one and your husband applies for one, maybe you could get $10,000 of that down to 0%. That would save a lot of interest.

                So, please do not get discouraged. Read that book. Keep coming back. It gets better.

                Oh, I'm a 28 year USAA member and just checked to see if anyone can beat their rates. Some came close on auto insurance. No one was even in the ballpark on homeowner's insurance. And I love their banking & investment services. The ATM refund is awesome. We get around $25 back each month for ATM fees other banks charge and USAA does not charge an ATM fee. That adds up.

                Tom

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                  #23
                  Originally posted by Eagle View Post
                  This is good advice. I'd recommend it too... Bob how much were you paying in interest a month according to your calculation?
                  Nov. 2010 - $22,551 on five CCs. Int rates ranged from 5.25% to 16.99%. Almost half the total CC debt was on one card at 12.90% int. that month we spent $193.68 on interest.

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                    #24
                    $632 a month in interest (just on the credit cards!) We're getting there though!

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                      #25
                      Originally posted by tomhole View Post
                      Please read the book The Millionaire Next Door. You have a spending problem. I can say that because last October when I signed on to these fora, I was you.
                      I agree with Tom and I second the Millionaire Next Door. It's a great book.

                      Here's 7 things that the authors found most millionaires had in common:

                      1. They live well below their means.
                      
2. They allocate their time, energy, and money efficiently in ways that are conducive to building wealth.
                      3. They believe that financial independence is more important that displaying high social status.
                      4. Their parents didn’t support them financially.
                      5. Their adult children are economically self-sufficient.
                      6. They are proficient in targeting market opportunities.
                      7. They chose the right occupation.

                      For more see this review on the book.
                      ~ Eagle

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                        #26
                        Originally posted by Bob B. View Post
                        Nov. 2010 - $22,551 on five CCs. Int rates ranged from 5.25% to 16.99%. Almost half the total CC debt was on one card at 12.90% int. that month we spent $193.68 on interest.
                        Wow that was $2328 a year in interest alone.

                        Originally posted by frugalredhead View Post
                        $632 a month in interest (just on the credit cards!) We're getting there though!
                        Ouch. That's over $7,500 ($7,584) a year in interest on credit cards. Keep working on knocking that debt out!
                        ~ Eagle

                        Comment


                          #27
                          Originally posted by Eagle View Post
                          Wow that was $2328 a year in interest alone.
                          Amount that we spent on CC interest in April 2013 = $16.68

                          Amount that we've spent on CC interest since August 2013 = $0.00

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