Thursday, August 21, 2008

Slowly getting better

Well, I've been posting more slowly as we continue to work our way out of troubles. Here's what's been happening:

1. I received a very good commission check in July that caught me up on many small debts and has actually allowed me to have a small amount in savings. I'm still living paycheck to paycheck but I at least have a small amount in the bank that has not been spent between two paycheck periods - that's progress for me.

2. I've only got another $220 on a PayDay loan that will be paid off on 8/29. That'll be my last PayDay loan God willing.

3. I paid off about $3000 in PayDay loans between 7/29 and 8/21. And I paid off another $300 credit card. I also paid off a $500 short term loan from my bank that was costing me $50 every time I renewed it - sometimes it cost me $250 in one month and I've been doing it all year. But I did end up paying $200 in NSF fees to my bank last month. It is so hard to work your way out of debt once you start spiraling downward with late fees and Insufficient Funds Fees not to mention high interest charges.

4. I contacted American Express Credit Bureau department and faxed them letters, credit card statements and payment receipts to prove that we settled for "full payment" on my wife's credit cards back in April 2007. I requested that they stop reporting a balance of almost $10,000 to the credit reporting agencies. I requested that they instead report a $0 balance. They said it will take them 30 days to review our paperwork against their records. I should know the outcome next month.

5. I continue to pay about $2300 a month on my Balance Liquidation Plans to my last sixteen credit cards. I've got another four years to go before I have no credit card debt. Yes, my debt right now is about $110,000.

6. I sucks that my kids can only attend Junior College while many of their friends either have full scholarships (ROTC pays really well) or their parents are rich enough to buy condos near their kids's universities.

7. I applied for FAFSA ( student aid grant for my daughter but we were turned down. So, I'm not even going to try for my son. I'm not going to allow them to start getting into debt by taking out any student loans. And I and my wife both tear up any credit card applications that we find in the mail that are addressed to either of my kids. Thank God I and my wife both have jobs. We're able to at least - thanks to my last commission - pay for their registration and books at the local Junior College. The book costs are averaging $100 per book! The books for a 12 unit semester cost more than their registration! Oh well, at least they are headed in the right direction.

8. I did have to borrow another $2000 last month from a family member. That sucked. But I've paid back $400 of that loan. I'm paying back $100 a month to my family - indefinately. I'll never be able to pay back all that money. They kept me out of foreclosure and out of bankruptcy. At least we were able to sell our house through a short sale. I've been very very fortunate in those respects. All I can do now is get through each day.

9. Oh, I finally got paid for some freelance work on I was very happy about that. I got paid $45 for some work. I hope it continues.

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