Sorry it took me awhile to getting around to reply

I did try this system at the beginning of my adventure in DebtLand and it did not work with any of my creditors at first. My mortgage company, Countrywide (now acquired by Bank Of America), point blank informed me “We are not willing to accept anything less than the regular minimum payment. If you can’t make this payment we suggest you file for bankruptcy; otherwise we will initiate foreclosure proceedings.”

Yeah, they were very helpful; I can’t say enough bad things about my experience with Countrywide. Citibank eventually filed suit and when they finally decided I was serious about filing for bankruptcy agreed to a settlement (through the court system so I have that lovely black mark on my permanent record) for….exactly the amount I told them I could afford in the 1st place!

Also, I live if Miami, Florida. I see there is a company offering payday advance loans – I’m going to use their service. Will let you know how it goes. Elan finally agreed to accept my offer 6 months into the ordeal; they removed all of the penalties so I’m not exactly sure what they feel they accomplished by delaying things for 6 months.

The other creditors also refused my offers when I made the offer; all but 1 agreed to accept a proposal from my CCCS for close to the amounts I offered them. Compass Bank has never responded to any communications from me or the CCCS. I was prepared to file a complaint against Compass with the BBB but the CCCS asked me to wait another 30-45 days while they try one more time to contact Compass.

It sounds like you have a great idea

it sounds like you have a great idea…i think i’ll try that this week when i get paid. (only once a month) hoping i can find some way out. we were going to try a credit councilor but the day we were going to send in the money…they were all over the news about taking ppl’s money. i spoke with the man that we were dealing with, and he assured me that wasn’t the issue…who do you believe?

It doesn’t seem like anyone has done this

I’ve read several of Dave’s books and I just was hoping to hear some real life experiences from someone who has done it.

Basically, what I am going to do is go over my budget for the millionth time and see if there are any more cuts. Then I am going to determine what is the total amount that can be applied to creditors.

I am unable to pay the minimums on any credit cards at this time. This will change but at this time that is where I am at.

I am contacting the creditors this week to discuss payment plans. I will discuss with them also my allotment plan. My only concern is if the creditor decides to sue but I guess I will deal with that when and if it happens.

One of my creditors is MBNA and I’ve heard that they are quick to sue but we shall see.

I appreciate all the other encouragement. I’ve lowered my regular phone/dsl bill so that is a least a little bit of help in the budget.

How is everyone else doing?

I watched you post this a few times

I watched you post this a few times and no ones really said they have done this, so I decided to make some suggestions. Basicly, Do what you can do, when your at the point of rock bottom what do you have to lose? What you want to do can’t really hurt, can it? Bankruptcy seems pretty much the last resort to me. And what is the worst thing that could happen? and how bad is that?

I know you’ve said you’ve worked out you budget and made the cuts where you can so, Pay all you necessities (ie roof, food, utilities, cars, if you can get out of a car payments try to do that) then what do you owe? How much total can you pay? How much do they each want ( do you meet the min on any)? Use logic now and a little math. I would use percentages for the amounts. IE I owe company Q $2000.00 which is 10% of the total debt; therefore I’ll pay them 10% out of “the what I can pay the creditors” pie. Does that make sense?

I would snow ball those payments also, so after one gets paid off take that payment down to the next. Does it work? I don’t know, but if you are going to do this I’d let each company know that you are going to do this ( only if your percentage is less than their min. and what the situation is(don’t forget to tell them you are considering bankruptcy, but trying not to). You are basically being your own CC, you just aren’t paying the fee. Read Dave Ramsey’s Financial Peace chapter on “dumping debt”, you may gain more insight in that. Hope this helped.

Thanks for the warning

I know that getting Social Security with a diagnosis of Fibro can be very hard. Fibro runs in my family. My mother has it and has gotten her SS and my sister also has it and is receiving her disability.

It took my sister 3 1/2 years to get her disability going so I know I am in for a long hard battle but there is nothing else I can do but fight them on this one. Honestly, this is one fight I would prefer not to have to fight.

I went from being able to do everything to being able to do very little. This is certainly not something I would wish I on worst enemy. Thanks again for your support, I can always use the extra encouragement.

Just some insight

Just some insight (based on working with many Fibromyalgia patients) re: applying for Disability with a diagnosis of Fibromyalgia. It is VERY difficult to win a claim for disability with this diagnosis for a number of reasons. First of all, many physicians do not believe it is a legitimate medical condition.

Secondly, many people diagnosed with Fibro do not meet the diagnostic criteria as set by the American Academy of Pain Management (I think; it’s been a while since I worked exclusively with Fibro patients). Thirdly, it is a “diagnosis of exclusion”; if you have been worked up for everything else (lupus, MS, etc) THEN you are given the diagnosis of Fibro. Here is the link to the National Fibromyalgia Association:

www.fmaware.org

There is a lot of info here that should help you. Just remember, there is a lot of info on Fibro on the Internet and I have heard of several people saying their claims were denied because “you could have just looked up the symptoms on the Internet and now you say you have them.” Here is another link that I believe has forums and chat areas: http://www.fmnetnews.com/pages/basics.html.

I would try to find some support groups and see if any of the members have had success with disability claims. I don’t want to discourage you in your pursuit of the claim, just want you to be as prepared as possible for your next application. One warning: Fibromyalgia is the “hot” diagnosis in medical litigation right now and there are many attorneys out there who claim to be able to help you with your claim. Please do a LOT of research before you get involved with an attorney.

Hearing your story makes me feel like there is hope

Hearing your story makes me feel like there is hope and our situation isn’t as bad as i sometimes think it is. My husband too is completely disabled with a brian infection that has left him paralysied, almost speechless, and 1/2 blind, he also suffers from seizures and has lupus so the slightiest infection can kill him. My biggest problem is trying to explain to him that we don’t have the money. He has no concept of what money is and something that costs $2.00 is the same as $200.00 to him and vice a versa, all he knows is that he wants it and there shouldn’t be any reason why we can’t get it. When companies offer us more credit cards, Alan can’t comperhend that its not free money. We are currently $40,000 in credit card debt and have a $150,000 mortage on our house that was spent on Hospital and credit/school bills. My parents are really upset that I mortaged the house when it was all paid off, but Alan needed an operation to save his life that insurance refused to pay.

Next week my mother-in-law is going to be moving in with us, that will also be another financial drain because she doesn’t believe in coupon shopping or thrift stores. I figured if she makes a big fuss about my coupon shopping, she can buy the staples and I’ll get all the coupon stuff, I’m not willing to spend my money on stuff i can get for almost nothing.

I’m hoping that this month I can pay off yet another bill, it’s a good feeling to see the list go down. I started carrying a notebook with me to keep track of my spending and it seems to help, also I started giving Alan his own money so he can see how fast it goes. Before he would just come to me. this has helped because he no longer suggests going to dinner unless he has the money in his wallet, even if he only has $1.00 we’ll go out and I’ll pay the rest, but he knows that there won’t be anymore money until next month. Since he only gets $20.00 its cut our going out to about 3 times a month, usuallly after a doctor’s appt or a hospitalization.
Well, I gotten long winded.

I will be contacting an attorney to help me get my disability

Hi Everyone,

I am new here. I am 27 and married with 2 small children. My husband who is 27 also, is disabled and receiving Social Security Supplemental Income (SSI) and Social Security Disablility Income (SSDI). We also receive SSI on my oldest son from a previous marriage. I have recently been diagnoised with Fibromyalgia and my condition has caused me to be unable to obtain employment. I have applied to Social security but was denied and went through the appeal processes and was denied again and again. I will be contacting an attorney to help me get my disability. We also are suppose to receive child support monthly but its never paid on time. We are currently $63K in debt but are slowly working our way out. I went through a CC at one point when I was able to work and was able to pay off approximately 4 Credit Cards and this month I was able to finally pay off my attorney who was nice enough to work with me for the past 5 years to pay off that debt. It definately feels great with each new bill that is paid off. I am trying to use the snowball affect on our debts but with such limited income it is hard so I work on one bill at a time. It’s all I can do. We have cut all the corners we can and I am currently in the process of tracking where what little money we get goes. When you only get $1048.66 a month and you are suppose to get $1272.66 a month it makes things a lot tighter.

We are on section 8 housing which definately helps a lot with the rent, and we receive food stamps which help but not the greatest (we get $164 a month for a family of 4). I have also found a list of local groups for food baskets to help with the food as well. Now just to let everyone know we do not have a car payment as the 2 cars we have are paid in full (YEAH!!!) But both are very old. We have a 1991 Geo Storm which has been a great car for us but is way beyond it’s retirement years and a 1994 Chevy Caviler. Both are standards which is fine I don’t mind but with my husband having a difficult time driving a standard anymore it means I have to do most of the driving which is not neccessarily a bad thing but there are days where I just can’t move and if I do the tears are rolling down my face. My parents have been nice enough to sign their 1996 Chevy Astro over to us on one condition, that we carry full coverage on it. Which I understand why they want us to do it but things are already tight enough with just state required coverage. But somehow we will find a way. As for Christmas, well that one is always the hardest but we let the grandparents take care of that. Our boys have 3 sets of grandparents so each of them get something special from Santa to give to the boys and then they provide lots of little stuff as well and place our names on a few of them for the boys.

I do have to admitt that although being in debt and broke all the time is not fun, it has allowed us the opportunity to start teaching our boys about money and how they need to be grateful for what they have and not be gready which surprisingly enough has been easy to teach them.

I will admit I am very strange, as you will see. When I get stressed out I turn to our finances for comfort. (See I told you I was strange. LOL) I will sit down with our budget and find many different ways of getting out of debt. My husband used to pick on me and say I could get anyone out of debt as long as they didn’t need anything extra. LOL I have learned that you have to allow a little fun money every now and then you the burden of debt and finances will weigh you down so much that it becomes very overwhelming. Now, I’m not saying that someone should go out and spend $500 on nothing or unneccesary items. I am just stating that an occational movie or nice dinner out will help an individual as well. Especially when you pay of one or two bills, kind of a celebration or reward for all your hard work and effort to pay off that bill.

Being broke is never easy but it’s nice to know that there is a place that we can come to with people who are in the same boat as us and are looking for help from other peoples experieinces. I’m sorry this post got so long, I have a tendency to ramble on from time to time. I look forward to getting to know all of you and helping to support you mentally and emotionally as we all travel down this road to freedom from debt.

Sharon

PS please forgive any spelling errors you may come acrossed in any of my posts as my speeling is not always the greatest. The mind goes fast then the fingers. 🙂

I just finished my budget

I just finished my budget and if everything works out well, I’ll have all the credit card debt paid off in 3 years, 10 months. I’m hoping that my mother in law will help with the bills, but I’m not holding my breath.

I think she’s more interested in spending money on making the house look nice (she’s already mentioned buying curtains and remodeling the patio area) I’m not going to ask her to help, it has to come from her. For the past year, I’ve paid her cell phone (24 hour access to alan in case of emergency – it really came in handy when Katrina and Rita struck because it was an out of the area phone and it was her only communication to the outside).

The first thing is to realize that it really can work

The first thing is to realize that it really can work, and plan accordingly. That’s not easy because so many people are disdainful of coupons, and snicker at stockpiling… so you have to ignore a lot of nonsense.

Sometimes you’ll have a shelf full of fruit and no vegetables and sometimes you’ll buy all vegetables and no fruit, but eventually it will even out. You’ll always have a well-stocked pantry at low cost, and you’ll never have to run out at the list minute and pay too much for supper.

More often than you might have thought possible, when an item goes on sale, you’ll have a coupon for it. Sometimes the coupon can be doubled or tripled, and your final cost will be half or even free.

The trick, of course, is use coupons before they expire, don’t miss any sales, and know the average cost of an item, so you know whether to stock up or pass up… so you DO have to stay on top of it… but that’s not hard, and there is help available, here:

www.couponmom.com

The Couponing Mom lists sales and coupons, matches them where possible, and displays them in search-able lists, according to city and store.

Even if she doesn’t list a grocery store in your city, her lists will help because you will know what to look for by just looking through her lists.

To make the plan work best, you need a good supply of coupons, and there’s an easy way to get them… join a “coupon trading” club.

There’s lots of information there about “couponing” (look in [Files]}, and lots of people to trade with.. or, if you don’t have coupons to trade, you can find just about any you want, already clipped and sorted, for a few pennies “clipping” fee (it’s illegal to actually sell them).

Hope this helps.