Oops, 7 Days. Hey look I don't update on weekends.

Just $40,000 away from being virtually debt free

Not including the mortgage, but I consider that a cost of living.

I've cleaned up my credit as well as I can, but the equity in my home is nearly useless because nobody wants to appraise it (same problem we had financing it.)

"All" I need is $40K and we could finally live comfortably with a nice cushion each month between income and expense.  Right now the $40K in debt is divided almost evenly between a credit card with a 19.8% APR and a car loan at 15%.

I've been pre-approved, pre-qualified, pre-whatever for an equity/debt consolidation loan about half a dozen times, but nobody is willing to spend much time on the appraisal of the property which is a pre-requisite of any of those sort of loan.

I can get a personal loan for $25K, but that's not solving the problem.

GARRR

So close.  This pisses me off.
Permalink Send private email muppet 
April 3rd, 2007 11:07am
You consider 40 grand close?
Permalink LH 
April 3rd, 2007 11:14am
Well... "All" is in quotes.

Good work getting this far.

I guess having a young child and trying to go to school makes a second job out of the question?
Permalink z-z-zed 
April 3rd, 2007 11:17am
I have no debt.

I have paid off my mortgage, and I pay off my credit card every month.

Best way to live.
Permalink  
April 3rd, 2007 11:18am
There have been lots of appraisal frauds going on. Those have exacerbated the housing bubble. Colorado has put a couple appraisers behind bars in the last year.
Permalink Peter 
April 3rd, 2007 11:19am
40 grand IS close.  It could be so much worse.
Permalink Send private email muppet 
April 3rd, 2007 11:20am
Between you and your wife, you must take home 100k.  Get on a serious budget.  Can you put $1000 a month on this if you live cheap.  What are the minimums?
Permalink z-z-zed 
April 3rd, 2007 11:24am
We're putting $1,000 a month on it right now.  Those are the minimums.  We are living cheap, of necessity.

With one or two exceptions (dog, vacation), there have been no major expenditures in our household for years.  We buy generic groceries, we use cheap gas, we avoid long trips, we eat in.

The minimums on these two remaining debts are suffocating us.  If we could just get rid of these last two things we'd be breathing easy, even if we could just refinance them at a lower interest rate and extend the term by a year or two.
Permalink Send private email muppet 
April 3rd, 2007 11:29am
Wow.  $1000 minimums.  Brutal.  I feel for you friend. You'd be a happy man if you could find 40K.  Do you have a grandmother or rich uncle you can off?
Permalink z-z-zed 
April 3rd, 2007 11:33am
Heh.  My paternal grandparents could pay off all of my debt without even feeling it.  They couldn't give less of a shit, though.  They're old school "your debt is your fault" Republicans, EXCEPT when it regards my alcoholic, drug-using cousin.  She has 2 kids with FAS, one of which has been legally adopted by my aunt, but they can't give that bitch enough money.  They bought "her" house, they bought "her" car, and they even put her in business for herself.

Me?  I'm a loser who is hardly worth calling on the phone.
Permalink Send private email muppet 
April 3rd, 2007 12:16pm
$20k on a single 20% CC is insane, brother. Some suggestions, take this with a grain of salt... but this is what I did:

1.) call your credit card company and request a reduction in your APR. If you've been good they might- best if you have no late payments recent. Explain you are a long time card holder and will be with them for a while. The only thing they can do is say no. My rate went from >15% to <10% with one single phone call.

2.) Look in to getting 1-3 additional credit cards with an introductory 0% APR (usually 6-12 months). transfer as much debt as you can to that card(s). That buys you a period without interest builiding up. Existing cards may have 0% interest balance transfers as well so you may be able to play "transfer the debt at 0%" game for a bit longer...

3.) sell your car and buy a 1997 saturn. that kills 10k debt at 15% right there.
Permalink arg! 
April 3rd, 2007 12:23pm
Good ideas -- except for the car.  You've already taken the hit there, might as well let that money ride for awhile.
Permalink SaveTheHubble 
April 3rd, 2007 12:24pm
Yeah I can't see trading half my car debt away for a liability in the form of a questionable car.  The car I have now has a ridiculously good warranty.

The other stuff is good but it's just juggling.  I'm hoping for a big fat solution in the form of a single loan, but that clearly ain't happening so I guess I'd better start juggling anyway.
Permalink Send private email muppet 
April 3rd, 2007 12:28pm
also, for 1 year I have been working ~80 hour weeks... MASSIVE overtime. Maybe a temporary 2nd job is called for in the weekend and evenings... (think best buy, circuit city maybe) that would be good for 8-12k after taxes per year.
Permalink arg! 
April 3rd, 2007 12:28pm
arg!

didn't you move to some crazy country?  I recall being really impressed with that.... I think it was you.
Permalink z-z-zed 
April 3rd, 2007 12:30pm
Right now a second job would be cancelled out by the additional babysitting expense it would create.

And somehow during all of this I really have to keep the college plan going, because the future financial stability of my family is at stake, there.
Permalink Send private email muppet 
April 3rd, 2007 12:31pm
yeah man... Qatar is pretty crazy.
Permalink arg! 
April 3rd, 2007 12:32pm
so muppet could ship off to the gulf for 12 months and clean this debt right up....
Permalink z-z-zed 
April 3rd, 2007 12:34pm
So yeah, this is just a vent thread really.  Hope you're enjoying Qatar or wherever.

It's dangerous posting vent threads around here.  We're (primarily) male geeks, and it's in our nature to SOLVE problems (and damn the consequences of the solution) not commiserate.  :-)
Permalink Send private email muppet 
April 3rd, 2007 12:34pm
Learn from Fight Club -- you just need to eliminate the records man!
Permalink DF 
April 3rd, 2007 12:37pm
Ah.

My response reminds me of the movie office space, you know where Peter says his guidance counsular asks what you would do in life if you had a million dollars, and then Samir starts talking about investing half of it in low risk mutual funds and then take the other half over to his friend Asadulah who works in securities...
Permalink arg! 
April 3rd, 2007 12:42pm
Although if you wanted to help me convince 20,000 people to each give me two bucks, I'd totally be game for that, too.
Permalink Send private email muppet 
April 3rd, 2007 12:43pm
There's over a billion internet users. Are you telling me that you can't easily get just 0.002% of them to give you $2?

Geesh, it should be easy!
Permalink DF 
April 3rd, 2007 12:49pm
Three words:
Million Dollar Homepage.
Permalink xampl 
April 3rd, 2007 1:15pm
> 1.) call your credit card company and request a reduction in your APR.

Hahah whatever, you think they're going to turn down thousands of dollars a year because he asks nicely?  He has no choice and everyone knows it.
Permalink Michael B 
April 3rd, 2007 1:17pm
Presumably they do it out of some reasonable fear that he will consolidate into a home equity loan or move balance to another card.
Permalink z-z-zed 
April 3rd, 2007 1:30pm
> Presumably they do it out of some reasonable fear that he will consolidate into a home equity loan or move balance to another card.

They're pretty good at knowing what your options are.
Permalink Michael B 
April 3rd, 2007 1:37pm
Actually I've gotten companies to reduce my own rates a number of times.  My wife has less luck.  She's not assertive enough, and she doesn't want me "calling up and hassling her creditors", so there's that.
Permalink Send private email muppet 
April 3rd, 2007 1:40pm
> Right now the $40K in debt is divided almost evenly between a credit card with a 19.8% APR

>> Something about being good at lowering rates

Are you aware that 19.8% APR is high?  7.99% is about what you should be paying.
Permalink Michael B 
April 3rd, 2007 1:47pm
The card with the high rate isn't mine, it's my wife's.  Try to keep up.

At any rate you're not really worth responding to Michael so have a nice day.
Permalink Send private email muppet 
April 3rd, 2007 1:48pm
"I've been pre-approved, pre-qualified, pre-whatever for an equity/debt consolidation loan about half a dozen times, but nobody is willing to spend much time on the appraisal of the property which is a pre-requisite of any of those sort of loan.

I can get a personal loan for $25K, but that's not solving the problem."

Do you mean "we've been pre-approved"?

If you can get a loan with low interests, it's worth a try.

(I am not trying to pretend being an expert, so please hold your wrath against me :) Blame Michael )
Permalink Send private email Rick Zeng/Tseng 
April 3rd, 2007 2:16pm
Volunteer to be on 'Big Spender' and let the whole world laugh at you.
http://www.tv.com/the-big-spender/show/35028/summary.html

Or better yet, just watch the show to see people who are more fucked than you, financially.
Permalink LH 
April 3rd, 2007 2:47pm
> Or better yet, just watch the show to see people who are more fucked than you, financially.

Much easier to get this kind of entertainment over the internet.
Permalink Michael B 
April 3rd, 2007 3:08pm
-----"yeah man... Qatar is pretty crazy."------

Qatar was voted the most boring assignment in the world in a poll amongst international diplomats a few years back.

And the credit card rates are even higher than those being gouged out of muppet's wife.

A colleague of mine was offered a credit card by the bank here in Saudi.
"What interest rate do you pay in Canada?" he was asked.
"Around 12%."
"Ah, here you only pay 2%."

True, but 2% a goddam month!
Permalink Send private email Stephen Jones 
April 3rd, 2007 6:16pm
I don't much disagree with your grandparents. By the time you've dug your way out of this pile of crap you might just have the collective family gumption not to borrow 20k at twice the going rate. Whereas the other sibling might actually be so fucked that she needs the emergency help to stop worse shit happening.

You are surviving, you just have to quit being an arrogant fuck that thinks you know it all when in fact you know jackshit about anything other than being smartarse. And quit bitching at people who are just telling you the straight truth.

If you could somehow monetarise your attention-sucking power that might help though.
Permalink $-- 
April 3rd, 2007 6:38pm
Why is your car loan at 15%?  Mine is 6 point something.

Geez, refinance the car!
Permalink Cheapskate 
April 3rd, 2007 6:41pm
Why would any loan institution agree to refinance his car?  He probably has no equity in the car.  Sure, for some part of the equity in his house, they would, IF they'd be bothered to make an assessment of the value of his house, WHICH apparently they aren't.

Now, renegotiating the interest rate on the card is a good idea, as is trying to find a zero percent interest card to roll it into.

I agree 15% seems high for a car loan -- but realize his credit was much worse when he bought the car in the first place.
Permalink SaveTheHubble 
April 4th, 2007 10:19am
> If you could somehow monetarise your attention-sucking power that might help though.

Going by the donations he's received I think he's monetizing his attention sucking power at an effective rate approaching $0.01/hour.
Permalink Michael B 
April 4th, 2007 12:51pm
Stephen Jones - you in Saudi? That's pretty crazy
Permalink arg! 
April 6th, 2007 8:05am
What's so crazy about being in Saudi (apart from the interest rates on credit cards)?
Permalink Send private email Stephen Jones 
April 6th, 2007 3:50pm

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