So I had an incredibly uneventful weekend (catching up on much needed rest from all of the insane hours I've been putting in as of late). The good news is that I spent the day getting my house organized and cleaned up so I feel better.
I also spoke to mom and sister and we are going to bring the dogs on our roadtrip in two weeks. Usually my mom would stay with them, but she will be with us. I looked into a dog kennel and there is no way I could leave them there. The cages were so small (even the supposed "large" for two dogs) which means I would have to pay for two cages. this is $58 per day and includes no walks or play time (they get let out 3 times a day to pee and thats it). If I want walks or play time it will be closer to $80 per day!!! That's more expensive then my hotel room!! Egads! BUT the good news is that the hotel I want to stay at allows two dogs of any size at no additional charge . . . so we're road tripping with the mutts! That's a HUGE savings!
But, back to the title of my post. I was playing with some numbers this weekend to try and figure out how to best approach the debt and school situation . . . and I think I am going to rent out my basement. My basement is finished but is in rough shape so I never use it (except to go down for laundry or to get in the freezer). It would need some work to be rented out (a bathroom, new carpet and a wall to create a bedroom, new paint etc) but it has a separate entrance. I wouldn't put a full kitchen in (just a kitchenette) and would have to share the laundry room. I think I can get it done for between $10-$15K. Once done the place will rent for anywhere between $650 and $750 per month. So my plan/ backup plan is as follows:
Plan A: Stay the course with my debt repayment and wait to see if I get a bonus, and what it is. It could be anything from $0 to as much as $13k depending on how the year ends. If I get the bonus I will fund the renovation with that and rent out starting 2014. All rental income will be used to pay down debt and then save for school. Under this plan I will be debt free by the end of 2014.
Plan B: Use the LOC to fund the reno and then use the rental money to pay it off. I would continue paying what I am now on the debts and would be debt free halfway through 2015. This is important to me as I would be going back to school full time late 2015 or 2016. This would mean I would have no debt and would have a rental income to help support me through school.
And if my life situation should change, the redo of the basement would increase the home value by almost $35K (I had a realtor who is a friend of the family assess it for me) so it would make up for the cost if I had to sell. Or, if necessary I could move into the basement for a year and rent the upstairs for $1500 a month which would cover the mortage and property taxes.
Either way I think its a good idea that won't cost me much in the short term but could be a huge source of revenue for the next few years. I like having a plan! It makes me feel so much better about life!!!