So in debt....it is hopeless!

iVillage Member
Registered: 04-26-2003
So in debt....it is hopeless!
6
Sat, 04-26-2003 - 5:52pm
I am a lurker and have really related to alot of the stories here! We have been married for 17 yrs and are in soooo much debt it is really terrible! We have ALOT of credit card debt, and two car payments and a LARGE mortgage payment. We built a new house last year and have lived there for a year, and believe me it has been a hard struggle all the way! It has gotten to the point that I have been using credit cards as a second source of income. (cash advances) Now the cards are maxxed out except for one and I have run out of tricks to pay bills. I am not late on anything right now, but I see it coming extrememly soon. I am so stressed and scared. Our house appraised for 275,000 last year, and we owe 211,000 on it. Our payments are 1375.00 per month, along with car loans in the 400's. We have more going out than coming in every month. I have made a really tough realization that the house needs to be sold. I can't live in my dream home and be able to pay other bills and enjoy life. I could write forever about my situation....I have looked into debt counseling services and the payments are so high I can't handle that. If we could get 250,000-275,000 for our house, I feel like we could pay off alot of debt. We have 2 kids, and our 14 yr old really likes living in this neighborhood with all of her friends....I told her that we really needed to sell the house, and she was upset, but asked if maybe we could find a cheaper house in this same area. ?????? Who knows, I just need help!!!! I will post more later. I have some other issues (family) that I need to vent on. I am in a hurry and will get back later. thanks for your ears!

Lucy
iVillage Member
Registered: 04-22-2003
Sat, 04-26-2003 - 9:56pm
before you sell the house your have equity in your house of 64,000

sell the car or cars and get one or two that you can pay cash for,

got to stop living outside your means, refinance the house if you can get a lower interest rate.

It will bring your payments down,

consolidate your cc with the bank or get a low interest second mortgage with your equity to pay them off. the lower the interest the faster you can pay it off.

get rid of them their cancer.

If your not making enough to make payments start cutting back then.

I had 1 new car all my life and it was great till someone side swipe me and totaled it out.

I have a car now the is an 89 looks great and runs good haven't had much problems with it.

A 73 pickup we rebuilt the engine 2 yrs ago runs good.

73 ford econoline van runs good but gas hog use for road trips so kids can sleep on the bed in back.

start looking around at what you really don't need. I f you have cable or satelight and don't really need it get rid of it.

What is your prioritys your new home right then start letting other things go that is not needed.
iVillage Member
Registered: 07-26-1999
Sat, 04-26-2003 - 11:07pm
I'm sorry for you that things are so tough, but congrats on making what seems to me like a realistic decision to sell the house if that is what you need to do to get things under control. Can you sell the cars and come out ahead (ie, are they worth more than what you still owe?). If you can, I would sell them and buy a cheap used car or two. Yep, I know the image suffers, but I sleep better knowing my car is paid for. My car's name is Rusty..it's an 88 Civic with probably more bondo than metal, but the frame is sound, and it runs pretty much perfectly and it runs on fumes, it's so cheap on gas. It's a four door and you can fit five adults in it just fine.

I also think you have a huge advantage in dealing with your situation if your 14 year old has asked if you could try to stay in the neighbourhood, and not thrown a tantrum. That is such a huge positive factor for you--I hope I read the situation correctly. She will just mostly want you to be happy, and if moving means less stress for you, she'll probably be fine with it.

Did you read my post about being close to paying off my credit cards? I never thought I could really do it, but I'm almost there with the credit cards. I used to pay my rent with Visa cash, and make payments on one card with cash advances from a different one, just to put some perspective on it. I still have a long way to go after the cc are paid, but I just wanted to tell you that it is NOT hopeless. You just have to figure out a way to make it work--mainly how to get more money in that out every month--then commit to it. For me it was 90% attitude and maybe 10% a better paying job. The job wouldn't have made any difference if I had kept on spending...

Hugs and stick around this board--the support here has also been critical to me making it.

iVillage Member
Registered: 04-19-2003
Sun, 04-27-2003 - 2:17am
Glad your here. I know how you feel about having to sell your house. My dh and I bought "up" too soon (had our house built too) and we sold it after being their 1 1/2 years because we were spending more than what is coming in.

I like the idea of the other poster to get a second mortgage. If that is possible and you would pay off the cc and pymts were lower maybe that is something you could look at doing. But first you need to get rid of the cards and serious look at your spending buying what you *need* vs want you *want* or you will just find yourself back in the same place but only with no equity in your home.

Selling our home was really hard on me (we now live in a rental with 30 year old carpets) but I have come to accept for the most part that this was best for our family in the long run. I can now stay at home with our sons and that is worth it to me. Really focus on what is important to you. I have learned so much from this and other boards at ivillage about budgeting and learning how to be frugal. Today I was going over our budget and we have cut our food bill from 700.00 to 400.00 a month and I am still working on getting it lower. It can be done. I use to think I couldn't possibly live on less and over time I have done just that. And I know one day we will own our own home again. It will just take time.

Sandra

Avatar for zaboz
iVillage Member
Registered: 03-26-2003
Sun, 04-27-2003 - 9:59am
Hi Lucy,

It's never hopeless unless you give up! It sounds like you're being realistic

about possibly selling the house. If it appraised that high you might even be able

to sell it for more. You could really get back on your feet that way.

Have you considered renting out a bedroom or something like that? It might

seem strange but if you could find a quiet college student, it would help your mortgage payment.

I think the advice

about the cars is also good. Even if you can sell one of them and cut it down to one car payment it would help.

Don't be overwhelmed. You have to start small. Look at your budget and think

of expenses you could cut. Cable tv? Cell phones? Rentals (storage? dock?)? Going out to eat? Clothing? Have you shopped around for better insurance rates? There are always places to trim spending.

I feel for your daughter but unfortunately the good of the family has to come first regardless of how she feels. It would be nice if you could stay in the same area

so that she can still be close to her friends. But even if that's not the case, she'll

be ok. Kids are resilient.

Best of luck to you!

iVillage Member
Registered: 01-30-1999
Sun, 04-27-2003 - 12:11pm
Just had to say again like some of the others you must be done with the credit cards and living beyond your means or no advice will really work in the long run. This means a whole change of mind about debt. I can't have a credit card anywhere near me or i will charge on it. All i have is a debit card....right out of the checking account. Anyway I hope you have come to the point where you realize borrowing money isn't finacial peace!!

Good luck...you can do it!! :)
iVillage Member
Registered: 04-11-2003
Mon, 04-28-2003 - 7:11pm
Lucy, You are not alone in you stress believe me!!!!!! My home is currently in foreclosure and the stress has caused so many problems with my family its unreal. i have a 14 year old who has become very defiant and depressed, i am physically sick and have insomnia and my husband and i argue all the time. We are currently in chapter 13 bankruptcy on top of all of this with only 1 more year to go. we spent $800 and hired a company to neotiate a payment plan with the lender . The payment plan was not affordable and we are out of the money. Our house went up for sale today. hopefully we cal sell it before the bank takes it but we have no where to go. tHERE are 4 of us and 2 animals alot of places wont rent to people with pets. I am SICK Bobbie