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Old 03-15-2013, 01:32 PM   #41
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More questions.

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If you want to ask more questions that will help me, please go ahead. I'm learning a lot from this forum, so any additional help is appreciated.
What do you have for emergency funds? If you use all 4K on the car, what do you have for emergencies?

Why a BA vs. Masters vs PhD? How much debt will you have from each level of education? What are your job prospects and typical salary from each level? Have you looked at the real long term implications of these choices on your likely income and required payments vs. your desire for financial freedom? (see post #20 in this thread..)
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Old 03-15-2013, 02:05 PM   #42
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I'm still working on figuring out how the budget will change when child #2 is born. One of the grandmothers has offered to watch baby #2 for free (she doesn't watch my daughter, because I don't want her sitting around watching tv all day). At least if she watches the baby for a few months that will give me time to get a better job (hopefully...).
Well, that is good, I did not know that.

Won't you have to take some time off from your jobs to take care of the new baby? A new car and a new baby would upset the budget quite a lot. I have 2 kids myself and contrary to popular belief, they are expensive. As far as the boyfriend goes, for the sake of your kids I hope he is a reponsible father..........
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Old 03-15-2013, 02:15 PM   #43
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As far as the boyfriend goes, for the sake of your kids I hope he is a reponsible father..........
And if he is or if he isn't, he can be made to pay up if it is established that he is the father.

He seems to be missing from all this discussion and planning, which seems very odd.

What is his income? What hours does he work? Do you want him around the children?

This entire discussion has a very odd tone as it is missing references to one of the main actors. You problems should be quite a bit less dire if there were 2 people rowing this boat instead of one.

Ha
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Old 03-15-2013, 02:33 PM   #44
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Are you actually paying full-time tuition to only take 12 hours? If so, you seem to be wasting money since a full load would certainly be more than 12 hours. If you pay by the hour would it actually be less expensive? Most people I know going to school full time would take 15 to 18 hours on a semester basis and more than 12 even on a quarter basis.
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Old 03-15-2013, 02:45 PM   #45
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All help and criticism appreciated! I really need help!!!!
There is nothing wrong with your choices (single parent of a young child, with another on the way; heavily-financed car that you desire to trade in on a more expensive model; intention to pursue expensive and prolonged education leading to relatively low-paying career in "counselling"): however, they are all completely inconsistent with your professed wish for financial freedom.

I don't mean to be judgmental, and repeat that your lifestyle is entirely legitimate: you are essentially self-supporting and paying your bills, and have nothing to be ashamed of. That said, it appears that you want early retirement about the same as I want to speak German (i.e., it would be nice, but I'm not willing to do any heavy lifting to actually make it happen).

With the greatest possible respect, you don't need any significant help. You just need to evaluate your priorities and decide whether financial independence is sufficiently important to you that you are now prepared to make the necessary sacrifices to achieve that goal.
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Old 03-15-2013, 02:52 PM   #46
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I noticed that about $10-$20 a month is going toward principle, the rest (of a $360.55/month payment) is for interest. I don't mind giving them the $4,000 tax refund, as many have suggested, but I do not want to pay $4,000 on interest. I want all of that money applied to principle. I hope that's possible...
When you borrow money you have to do so on the lender's terms, which unfortunately will include hefty interest given your poor credit score, low income and lack of collateral.

The only way to avoid paying interest is to avoid debt. to the extent possible, save money and pay cash for all purchases.
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Old 03-15-2013, 03:00 PM   #47
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I'm still stuck on the 22% interest for a car loan. How did that happen? Car loans have been anywhere from possibly 0% to 3% the last 5 years.

Like another has asked I'm also stuck on the child support. Boyfriend or not, he owes monthly for the child and the one on the way, assuming it's the same guy.

Not wanting to really get into your relationship with your significant other but presumably part of your responsibility as a parent is to protect your children, financially and otherwise. Is there legal documentation stating the child or children are his, such as on the birth certificate(s)? Do you have a court order or a legal agreement for child support? if you don't, I'd recommend one.

If he isn't paying that on a timely basis or skips months, then the next stop would be child support enforcement because only when you involved them does the legal clock actually start to tick regarding his legal financial responsibility (unless rules have changed). They will keep track of any money not paid and accrue it for the children. It is their legal right to have this money.

Think about what you need to have in place in case something happens to you, if you can not work, or if he leaves and marries someone else down the road, etc. You can phrase it that it isn't against him, it is for the children to ensure their financial well being....etc.

So..I guess I got into this anyway....
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Old 03-15-2013, 04:21 PM   #48
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What do you have for emergency funds? If you use all 4K on the car, what do you have for emergencies?

Why a BA vs. Masters vs PhD? How much debt will you have from each level of education? What are your job prospects and typical salary from each level? Have you looked at the real long term implications of these choices on your likely income and required payments vs. your desire for financial freedom? (see post #20 in this thread..)
I don't have emergency funds. Never have...

A couple of people have asked about how much my education is TRULY costing me. I appreciate that, because I've never thought about it. According to my credit report I have $47,900 in student loans already (4 years of undergrad). I need to research how much graduate school is actually going to cost me.
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Old 03-15-2013, 04:23 PM   #49
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Well, that is good, I did not know that.

Won't you have to take some time off from your jobs to take care of the new baby? A new car and a new baby would upset the budget quite a lot. I have 2 kids myself and contrary to popular belief, they are expensive. As far as the boyfriend goes, for the sake of your kids I hope he is a reponsible father..........
Yes, children are extremely expensive! My jobs give me 6 weeks of unpaid leave. Any more than that would have to be for a medical reason, or I risk not having a job to come back to. Yes, that 6 weeks off will definitely upset the budget. I was hoping to save some money to use during that time. So far, I haven't been able to.
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Old 03-15-2013, 04:25 PM   #50
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And if he is or if he isn't, he can be made to pay up if it is established that he is the father.

He seems to be missing from all this discussion and planning, which seems very odd.

What is his income? What hours does he work? Do you want him around the children?

This entire discussion has a very odd tone as it is missing references to one of the main actors. You problems should be quite a bit less dire if there were 2 people rowing this boat instead of one.

Ha
I don't like to include his income when working out my budget, because he isn't consistent. Sometimes he helps, mostly he doesn't. Someone else asked if I get child support. No, I don't. That's my fault. I should apply, but he keeps saying he needs to pay off some bills before big chunks of his check starts missing. I guess I'm being too nice in even caring about all that... So, for now, I just consider myself on my own, since I basically am, and I try to work things out that way.
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Old 03-15-2013, 04:29 PM   #51
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I'm still stuck on the 22% interest for a car loan. How did that happen? Car loans have been anywhere from possibly 0% to 3% the last 5 years.

Like another has asked I'm also stuck on the child support. Boyfriend or not, he owes monthly for the child and the one on the way, assuming it's the same guy.

Not wanting to really get into your relationship with your significant other but presumably part of your responsibility as a parent is to protect your children, financially and otherwise. Is there legal documentation stating the child or children are his, such as on the birth certificate(s)? Do you have a court order or a legal agreement for child support? if you don't, I'd recommend one.

If he isn't paying that on a timely basis or skips months, then the next stop would be child support enforcement because only when you involved them does the legal clock actually start to tick regarding his legal financial responsibility (unless rules have changed). They will keep track of any money not paid and accrue it for the children. It is their legal right to have this money.

Think about what you need to have in place in case something happens to you, if you can not work, or if he leaves and marries someone else down the road, etc. You can phrase it that it isn't against him, it is for the children to ensure their financial well being....etc.

So..I guess I got into this anyway....
I bought my car in 2007. That's the interest rate I got because of my credit. I hear people talk about 3% interest rates and that seems surreal.

As for the child support, I posted about that a few minutes ago. Basically, no, I do not get it.

I need to do that though. There really isn't a good reason why I am not.
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Old 03-15-2013, 04:32 PM   #52
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I don't like to include his income when working out my budget, because he isn't consistent. Sometimes he helps, mostly he doesn't. Someone else asked if I get child support. No, I don't. That's my fault. I should apply, but he keeps saying he needs to pay off some bills before big chunks of his check starts missing. I guess I'm being too nice in even caring about all that... So, for now, I just consider myself on my own, since I basically am, and I try to work things out that way.
You are nicer than I'd be. Why do you allow him to prioritize his child as less important than his bills?

Regardless of your relationship, he has a duty to his children. I'd be looking to get this legally dealt with. Yes, he'll probably still pay late, but then he will legally owe you.

You may be wise to budget without him in mind. But I think you are foolish not to go after him for his responsibility. He needs to man up.
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Old 03-15-2013, 04:33 PM   #53
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There is nothing wrong with your choices (single parent of a young child, with another on the way; heavily-financed car that you desire to trade in on a more expensive model; intention to pursue expensive and prolonged education leading to relatively low-paying career in "counselling"): however, they are all completely inconsistent with your professed wish for financial freedom.

I don't mean to be judgmental, and repeat that your lifestyle is entirely legitimate: you are essentially self-supporting and paying your bills, and have nothing to be ashamed of. That said, it appears that you want early retirement about the same as I want to speak German (i.e., it would be nice, but I'm not willing to do any heavy lifting to actually make it happen).

With the greatest possible respect, you don't need any significant help. You just need to evaluate your priorities and decide whether financial independence is sufficiently important to you that you are now prepared to make the necessary sacrifices to achieve that goal.
I truly do what early retirement; always have. I just have no idea how to dig myself out of this hole I am in. I made a lot of bad financial decisions a few years ago, and I am still paying for them. Trust me, I desperately want to turn this situation around, get out of debt, and live a happy life with my children.

My priorities: survive and give my kids a good life. I just need to get to that point. I feel like this car is choking the life out of me. The car is the big issue on my credit report, the car payment is too much, the fact that I still owe so much is too much... I think if I just get this car paid off I can FINALLY start improving things (along with moving my daughter to that cheaper school I previously mentioned).
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Old 03-15-2013, 04:39 PM   #54
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I truly do what early retirement; always have. I just have no idea how to dig myself out of this hole I am in. I made a lot of bad financial decisions a few years ago, and I am still paying for them. Trust me, I desperately want to turn this situation around, get out of debt, and live a happy life with my children.

My priorities: survive and give my kids a good life. I just need to get to that point. I feel like this car is choking the life out of me. The car is the big issue on my credit report, the car payment is too much, the fact that I still owe so much is too much... I think if I just get this car paid off I can FINALLY start improving things (along with moving my daughter to that cheaper school I previously mentioned).
Sometimes things just take time. Make a plan and stick to it. You'll get there.
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Old 03-15-2013, 04:39 PM   #55
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As for the child support, I posted about that a few minutes ago. Basically, no, I do not get it.

I need to do that though. There really isn't a good reason why I am not.
Not getting child support when you probably can falls into the category of "bad financial decisions". Take the opportunity to reverse this one while you can and use the money to help dig yourself out of debt.
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Old 03-15-2013, 04:42 PM   #56
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Not getting child support when you probably can falls into the category of "bad financial decisions". Take the opportunity to reverse this one while you can.
+1

Go to court NOW and ensure the child support payments for both. Don't be hornswaggled into "I'll pay you, don't worry." or feel like you will anger him if you make it formal. It is his obligation, make sure you get the court ordered child support payments. Now.
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Old 03-15-2013, 04:48 PM   #57
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I don't have emergency funds. Never have...

A couple of people have asked about how much my education is TRULY costing me. I appreciate that, because I've never thought about it. According to my credit report I have $47,900 in student loans already (4 years of undergrad). I need to research how much graduate school is actually going to cost me.
Right. If you finish just the Bachelors, you will have to start repaying about $600/month in student load debt. That is $7200 per year. IF you make 30K, taxes at say 3K, you will have $1650 per month to live on...not much more than now.

You will really have to make ALOT more money if you are going to add the MA and Phd...if you get to $150K in debt, your annual payments will be 20K.
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Old 03-15-2013, 04:54 PM   #58
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I don't like to include his income when working out my budget, because he isn't consistent. Sometimes he helps, mostly he doesn't. Someone else asked if I get child support. No, I don't. That's my fault. I should apply, but he keeps saying he needs to pay off some bills before big chunks of his check starts missing. I guess I'm being too nice in even caring about all that... So, for now, I just consider myself on my own, since I basically am, and I try to work things out that way.
I certainly admire your spunk. Still, I have to agree with some others above, get the Daddy's money and get it now. If he leaves, you are young and the world is full of men. By not paying child support while you are working 2 jobs and attending school, he is not being respectful of or responsible toward you and the children.

Ha
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Old 03-15-2013, 05:12 PM   #59
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I have followed ppt his thread with interest and amazement. How can someone so smart get stuck In such a financial pickle?

Pardon my bluntness, but you need to get your act together pronto, for your own sake and that of your kids. Evaluate the cost effectiveness of your proposed educational path. Get out of debt ASAP. Get the deadbeat dad to pay up for the kids' sake. Take some finance courses!!!!! You have the intelligence to get yourself out of this hand to mouth way of life. Now go do it.

Then, and only then, can you contemplate ER. It is many years away for you. Sorry, but I need to call a spade a spade here.

By the way.....please don't have any more kids until you and their father can afford to provide for them.

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Old 03-15-2013, 05:14 PM   #60
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You will really have to make ALOT more money if you are going to add the MA and Phd...if you get to $150K in debt, your annual payments will be 20K.
This kind of debt is even hard for doctors. Avoid it. You will soon have your bachelor's, you will qualify for many business jobs with real opportunity to better your earnings over time. Some of these jobs will have strong elements of counseling and helping people. My niece was struggling with college debts about the size you now have, and her field, journalism, has pretty well been destroyed by the internet. She got a good job with a big discount broker, and gets regular raises, and has been able to move out of Mom's home, get an apartment, and get those loans paid down.


And there may be government jobs you can qualify for.

On this board we understand that many young people have huge debts, but we also understand that they will be lucky to ever retire at all, let alone early. And many of these people have no children. I think you might profit from some good but realistic career counseling. Unfortunately, most career counseling is done by people in the high schools or colleges, who may function as shills for the education and student loan industry.

Also, I would like to compliment you and say that you have a good character. You have accepted some pretty realistic information here. Not everyone could. You also are clearly intelligent and you write well. These are all big plusses.

Ha
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