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Same Mistakes Over and Over!!!!

March 21st, 2011 at 09:12 am

Hello. I'm hoping that the wisdom out there on this blog can help me. I make the same mistakes over and over with my money. I can't get ahead with anything. I work and paybills. I am always late by at least a month on many bills. I get NSF's and late fee's. I'm kinda hopeless right now, because I am getting older but my goals of having a good paying job is beginning to become distant. I'm stuck right now, It has been recommended by my therapist that I hold off with my college courses until I have my 13 year old son's school and home life in a stable condition. I'm getting a second job. I constantly borrow money from my sister and mom, "just this once again, I fell behind" I need to figure out where all my problems come from and how to get them under control. Here is my monthly train wreck:
Rent $1000.00 ( I owe the landlord for moving expenses and he lowered my rent a few months when I was being garnished, so now I'm paying it off, almost done in May.
Normal rent is $750.00
Chapter 13 Trustee payment $250.00 (behind 2 months)When I write down my budget, I'm not seeing the right set of numbers. If I write down all my bills and total amounts due, I don't have money to pay them, so I write down what I should be paying monthly if I wasn't behind. I hate making a budget because I'm so over my head right now.

9 Responses to “Same Mistakes Over and Over!!!!”

  1. Joan.of.the.Arch Says:

    What are the mistakes you are making over and over?
    I'm guessing renting a $750 place might be one of the mistakes. Is paying college tuition one of the mistakes? Do you pay back the money you borrow from your Mom and sister so that they are willing to repeatedly make a new loan?

    Are you able to pay the "regular" amounts that you would owe if you were not behind and have extra fees and catch-up to pay? I'm not understanding your situation, sorry.

  2. North Georgia Gal Says:

    Hang In there. I have found that blogging helps me resist temptations and stick to my budget. If you were to start from scratch today, do you make enough to pay your bills? I would start with that. Do you pay your sister or mom back? Is the loans from families something you can put off for a while? My family is great and don't hound me when I borrow money from them. It has only been recently that I have been able to pay them back for all the money I have borrowed from them. If you track all of your spending for a month in a spreadsheet, you will see where you need to cut back.

  3. CB in the City Says:

    You DO need to write everything down so you can see what you're dealing with. Do you have more expenses than income? If so, you will need to make cuts in your spending -- some that may hurt, but it will be better than bouncing checks.

    You MUST get a handle on paying your bills on time. Fees for late payment and non-sufficient funds are the worst waste of money in the world, as you are seeing.

    Finally, I would say you need to step up and take responsibility for your situation. I'm saying this because I went back and read your old posts and they all sound like you're in a panic, and you're hopeful that we can solve it for you. I am saying this with absolute LOVE -- we can't solve your problems, only you can do it, and while you might have to make baby steps at first YOU CAN DO IT! Your attitude that you can take control and whip this beast will make all the difference.

    ((Big hug))

    Just put a plan together and start working it. Any plan right now is better than panic and throwing up your hands.

    Keep us in the loop and let us know how you are doing.

  4. Petunia 100 Says:

    GingerBell, is your budget just too tight? Do you need to reduce and eliminate some expenses? Do you track every dollar? If not, I recommend trying Mint.com (it is free).

    Stop paying NSFs. Only write checks you can cover. If an automatic payment is going to hit your account, don't spend that money. If something is late, then it's late. You can't afford to pay NSFs on top of everything else.

    Have you moved? I remember you talking about needing to move.

    I'm rooting for you, GingerBell.

  5. ceejay74 Says:

    I agree, write down your normal income and bills and see what it looks like. (Post it up on your blog if you want some honest advice.) Does it balance out with a bit of money left over? If not, you need to figure out a way to either decrease spending or increase income.

    Then, write down what you owe to people, including what you're behind on. Can you get one personal loan to pay all of these off? That would get you current and consolidate your debt. Only do that if you have enough in your budget to take on the extra expense of a personal loan. The good thing about personal loans vs. credit-card advances is they have a set payment for a set number of months, and then you're done. When I started on this site, I consolidated several of my debts onto a personal loan. I even managed to pay it off a few years early by sending extra to it whenever I could.

    If you can't afford a consolidation loan or don't qualify, then you need to start calling the people you owe and try to set up payment plans. Get current first on the bills that are costing you money from penalties and fees. Then work on the debts that aren't killing you with extra charges.

    Without knowing the specifics of what mistakes you're making, what your fixed income vs. expenses are, and how much debt you have, I can't give more tailored advice. I would just say don't panic and don't beat yourself up. Those aren't productive activities. Breathe, get some perspective, start anew.

    Good luck!

  6. Jerry Says:

    As much as I am sure that you want to get through college, if the money is not there then do not sabotage your financial situation to pay tuition. Once things get a little more stable then maybe that can lead to assisting with college, and you will also have the insurance of being in a better emotional space for the rigors of your studies. Good luck! We are pulling for you...

  7. gingerbell Says:

    I really appreciate the comments and suggestions. I know that I've paid too much in rent for a few years now, because lower apartment rent (to me) could mean a bad area (for my son). I think I don't want to face the facts of how to live within' my means, and that my income is very low to be raising a 13-year old on. I want a two-bedroom, but most are pretty high priced. I can try a single bedroom apartment and i'd sleep on the couch (I do now anyway, I gave my son my bed). I also subscribe to cable tv and the internet, because I'm gone so much I'm hoping the XBox will keep my kid at home (and out of trouble) I know that is a "want" and not absolutely needed. but, explaining that to my son, is hard. I can afford a place to live for $550, if I take my net income x .30. I've been driving a taxi cab as much as possible after my day job and on the weekends and I have generated some money (i'm told by the other taxi driver's that I can make up to 2,000 a week, but i need to put in way more time , like quit my day job and work for the taxi company full-time. I'm seriously considering, because I make $20 and hour vs. $14.90. But the taxi company doesn't offer insurance and i have insurance now. The higher income would solve my problems, wouldn't it? I will write more about my budget and income very soon.

  8. Jerry Says:

    The health insurance is a big deal, definitely... that needs to be taken into consideration. Would your son be covered under any state plans if you made the change in work? The extra cash would help lead you to a better starting point, but remember that unless you remain focused on changing the patterns, the financial problems will not simply disappear with more money. (There are plenty of doctors, businessmen, and lawyers making 200 grand a year, but spending 300,000+.)

  9. gingerbell Says:

    Right now I've been at my current job for 5 years without a pay raise for 3 years! The company has a freeze (supposedly) on raises. So the cost of living is going up, but not my pay. Driving a cab is an independant contractor job. I'd have to learn about how to file and pay taxes. My job here is secure (as far as I know) and leaving it for a taxi driving job may be a bit crazy. It could work out.

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