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|Tue, 04-01-2008 - 6:09am|
Well, my name is Jen. My DH and I are 27. I was in debt, he was in more debt and together we created a lot of debt too. My husband was a med student when we met and now he's a doctor in his first year of residency. Not many people know how hard it is financially to be a doctor. The debt we are in currently includes the following:
- $47k of credit cards (down from a high of about $57k, which was a year ago). We are currently paying this off through working with Take Charge America, who consolidated our debt into a much lower monthly payment and lowered our crazy interest rate from about 25% to 9%. This has made the biggest difference in our budget and we are on track to erase our CC debt in about 3.5-4 years at this rate.
- $73k of student loans (just mine). I need to consolidate and get a lower interest rate. Once we finish paying off the CC debt, we plan on applying that payment over to this one and getting rid of it ASAP. My payment is current on this one and DH's hospital has a credit union that works with its employees. We've heard a lot of good things about what they can do for student loans, so we're hopeful that we can get a great rate through them.
- $130k of student loans (DH's medical school). They're deferred right now (interest and principle) because we just cannot handle that payment right now.
- Another money sucker is the fact that we still own a house in one city and we rent an apartment in another. The house we had in medical school (mortgage is for about $50k and is an awful interest rate that is about to become variable - yippee). We basically burn about $600/month on a house we don't use and we aren't willing to rent out because we're too far away to deal with maintenance. We had it on the market last summer with an awful realtor who did nothing for us. Trying again this summer with ERA (who will buy it from us if they don't sell it).
We make about $3800/month. We pay $1200/mo for our CCs, $450/mo for my student loans, $600/mo on the house, $730/mo on rent (which is great for our area), $100/mo on cable, $400/mo on utilities (includes cable bill and cell phones), the rest (about $400) is used for car gas, groceries, and misc items. We don't really waste a single penny of that $400.
Wow, I feel like I just confessed to a priest. For all the debt we're in, DH makes about $55k/year. I make about $25k/year. DH works like a dog and there is no more time for an extra job. But there is a light at the end of the tunnel. DH is about to sign a deal with a practice in a hospital that would give us a $2000/month stipend, a sign-on bonus of approximately $10-13k, will pay off the bulk of his student loans, and will pay him very competitively once he's at the practice (about $175k/year). This is what allows me to sleep at night! We plan on using the sign-on bonus on our credit cards (worst interest rate we have by far). The stipend is about $600/month more than I make working and I plan on becoming a SAHM this fall when our first child is born. We priced out daycare and it wasn't feasible to pay for daycare.
Does anyone have any further ideas? We're already coupon-clipping, Goodwill-shopping, using home recipes for everything from food to cleaner, etc. etc.
Thanks in advance! And I hope my debt at least made ya'll feel a little better about yours! :-)