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Having earlier reported decreasing our cc debt from 27K to 18K over the past year, we have not been able to maintain that momentum, and find ourselves slowly creeping back up.

My wife not working and grad school are the main culprits.

Kaigun Chusa
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My wife not working and grad school are the main culprits.

Have you looked for something your wife could do at home?

Jay
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That's not a good thing, though I can sort of relate... we started at 18K and have made a little progress downward... though with me in Korea and the hubby doing a lot of traveling, we seem to be stagnating... we did just get almost 4K from a tax return and not sure how that fits in... that and juggling credit cards to take advantage of low rates...

Discover and First USA have been permanently shut down since I came here, though, which is good...

I hope to have Capitol One and a few other small cards paid off... soon... minor setbacks are a pain...


CaveGirl
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Actually, she has done some stuff out of the house. We ended up with a small loss after writing off some office equipment and furniture. One of her main accounts had a change of ownership and has pretty much dried up. Our toddler does not make it easy for her right now.

KC
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My wife not working and grad school are the main culprits.

=== === ===
Well, what about your getting a "part-time" job to improve your cash flow?
No?
--BigBunk
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How old is your toddler? I have a 2 and a half year old staying with in-laws for the duration...


CaveGirl
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Well, what about your getting a "part-time" job to improve your cash flow?

Other than work (not always 40 hours, unfortunately) and school, my commute is around 1 and a half hours each way. Not a whole lot of time to work another job.

KC
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My wife not working and grad school are the main culprits.
--- ---
Have you looked for something your wife could do at home?

=== === ===
Like what? -- for example?
Just wondering how that would fit into the family schedule.
--BigBunk
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Actually, she has done some stuff out of the house. We ended up with a small loss after writing off some office equipment and furniture. One of her main accounts had a change of ownership and has pretty much dried up. Our toddler does not make it easy for her right now.


Yes it is always difficult with a small one at home. My wife has found a semi-prfotable niche on e-bay buying and selling antiques. You have to know what you are doing though and it only takes one or two unscrupulous people and a month's profits go down the drain. But on balance she is coming out ahead, and we use what she doesn't need as working capital to pay down our First USA card.

jay
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Sometimes I think that working a second job is overrated... how much time can one possibly put into paying debt before it just becomes too much of a strain on the family and the person extending themselves?


CaveGirl
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Mine is 2 and a half as well, although he is already wearing his sisters hand-me-downs from kindergarten. Being different genders, not all her clothes are suitable for that. We try to sell the stuff that is in better shape to consignment shops.
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How old is your toddler? I have a 2 and a half year old staying with in-laws for the duration...


My toddler just turned 20, I bet you were talking to the other fellow!!

jay
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I swore I would never have the mentality of wanting the designer clothes for my totster... my sis-in-law does that for her daughter... wasteful in my mind...


CaveGirl
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Sometimes I think that working a second job is overrated... how much time can one possibly put into paying debt before it just becomes too much of a strain on the family and the person extending themselves?


This is true, sometimes the strain simply isn't worth it.

jay
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Well, what about your getting a "part-time" job to improve your cash flow?
--- ---
Other than work (not always 40 hours, unfortunately) and school, my commute is around 1 and a half hours each way. Not a whole lot of time to work another job.

=== === ===
Well, I do see your point.
--BigBunk
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My toddler just turned 20,

LOL.

On your other post, how has your wife's experience on eBay been? We have some stuff we would like to sell, but I am leary.
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I have part of a stamp collection I should be selling on E-bay but I am leary, too...

Anyone have positive experiences?


CaveGirl
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Sometimes I think that working a second job is overrated... how much time can one possibly put into paying debt before it just becomes too much of a strain on the family and the person extending themselves?

=== === ===

At the other end, then, what about keeping a close eye on new expenditures? Clamping down there would have the same effect, in essence, as more income -- in terms of cash flow, IMO.
--BigBunk
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On your other post, how has your wife's experience on eBay been? We have some stuff we would like to sell, but I am leary.

Really, really well. We find that you really reach a nice cross section of the population and that you can get about 3x to 5x what you would in a "garage sale" for most items. Plus for the real antiques you are dealing with a fairly well educated (antique wise) population so you get pretty good prices. We try to use pay pal or money orders for everything we buy or sell and that has worked out really well. About 1% or fewer of the people out there are outright crooks, so always check their references carefully.

Jay
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There must be a board somewhere at TMF that talks about online auctions in more detail, does anyone here have info on that, or maybe I'll just try a search.
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About 1% or fewer of the people out there are outright crooks, so always check their references carefully.


I mean check everyone's references carefully, you obviously don't know which ones are the crooks!

j
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I tried a search and no go on anything other than auto auctions...


CaveGirl
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I have part of a stamp collection I should be selling on E-bay but I am leary, too...

=== === ===
Probably, you're better off consulting a philatelic expert on this, I should think.
JMO.
--BigBunk
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I have a handle on book prices on the stamps... nothing of great value... just a lot of excess that I have encountered... some old commemorative sets though the USPS... they have set prices on them...

The rare ones I keep... and I research what I do have questions on...


CaveGirl
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On your other post, how has your wife's experience on eBay been? We have some stuff we would like to sell, but I am leary.
--- ---
Really, really well. We find that you really reach a nice cross section of the population and that you can get about 3x to 5x what you would in a "garage sale" for most items.


=== === ===
Valuable insights here. Perhaps I can get my spouse to check into it herself.
--BigBunk
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TMF2Aruba,

I thought I recalled a board that dealt with selling stuff on line, or was there a thread on that here?

Thanks,

Kaigun Chusa

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I mean check everyone's references carefully, you obviously don't know which ones are the crooks!

--- ---
Not in advance -- you certainly don't.
Good thought.
--BigBunk
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I have part of a stamp collection I should be selling on E-bay but I am leary, too...

What are you leary about? It's you who sets the minimum selling price. You can demand payment by money order or wait until the check clears before you ship. It's the buyers who have to be leary, not the sellers.
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New venue for me bfontes... just a little on the apprehensive side... but it sounds like a great idea to raise some extra cash while clearing some space at the same time...


CaveGirl
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...but it sounds like a great idea to raise some extra cash while clearing some space at the same time...

=== === ===

Yes, it's definitely a win-win situation: more cash, more space.
No downside, IMO
--BigBunk

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I have sold at least 400 auctions on eBay. Most recently, a stamp collection. I have found that the stamp collector shop not far from here will offer me next to nothing for what the stamps are worth. I have determined that the loose .29 and .32 stamps are worth less than their face value for collectors so I use them to pay bills and to ship my eBay auctions. You must scan the items for a picture. Check out feedback to see who is a deadbeat bidder. Let your audience know if you are a smoke free home. Take cashiers checks, money orders and hold the items if a check is sent until it clears. Keep good records. I prefer to sell no reserve so that I have a minimum bid which is what I am willing to sell the item. Don't forget to add up the fees to your minimum price.

On the other subject of cc debt going up rather than down, I suggest that you really look at what you are charging and how you spend money. There are a number of ways to reduce the cash flow out of the home so that you can pay off debt. Here is a sampling:

No cable, cell phone, magazines, newspapers. Entertain for free at the park and library. Cook from scratch, use cloth diapers, use wash cloth for wipes, wash in cold and use bleach for the wipes and diapers, use half the soap for everything (toothpaste, shampoo, handsoap, clothes, dishes...), turn off the lights, turn down the heat, plant a garden for fresh veges, shop from a list that is created from a menu, only wash full loads in the dishwasher and laundry, hang clothes to dry, don't buy any new clothes for adults for a year, make gifts, take shorter showers, cancel any yard service or cleaning service, use cloth napkins and rags rather than buying paper products, increase the deductibles for the car and house, pay bills on time, sell stuff around the house and declutter (eBay for instance), carpool, cancel any extras on the phone (3-way calling, call waiting, etc.), don't eat out -- not lunch, not coffee, nothing.

By following some of the principles above, I was able to pay off all my debt and buy a home a single mother in the 1980's. It can be done.

L

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<<Having earlier reported decreasing our cc debt from 27K to 18K over the past year, we have not been able to maintain that momentum, and find ourselves slowly creeping back up.

My wife not working and grad school are the main culprits.

>>



Perhaps you could remind her that the National Organization of Women expects her to be an equal partner financially in your marriage and working full time?



Seattle Pioneer

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Perhaps you could remind her that the National Organization of Women expects her to be an equal partner financially in your marriage and working full time?

That would not go over well. We had to make a lifestyoe decision regarding daycare, and her staying at home was the decision for a number of reasons.

We have been taking many of the steps that most on the board recommend (there are some things I can't always do, such as not eat out at lunch, because of business). I suppose there is a bottom line that says I cannot afford to go to grad school, but then, in my business, I can't afford not to. There will be returns on this investment later, but it hurts right now, both in terms of money and time.
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There are a number of ways to reduce the cash flow out of the home so that you can pay off debt. Here is a sampling:

No cable, cell phone, magazines, newspapers. Entertain for free at the park and library. Cook from scratch, use cloth diapers, use wash cloth for wipes, wash in cold and use bleach for the wipes and diapers, use half the soap for everything (toothpaste, shampoo, handsoap, clothes, dishes...), turn off the lights, turn down the heat, plant a garden for fresh veges, shop from a list that is created from a menu, only wash full loads in the dishwasher and laundry, hang clothes to dry, don't buy any new clothes for adults for a year, make gifts, take shorter showers, cancel any yard service or cleaning service, use cloth napkins and rags rather than buying paper products, increase the deductibles for the car and house, pay bills on time, sell stuff around the house and declutter (eBay for instance), carpool, cancel any extras on the phone (3-way calling, call waiting, etc.), don't eat out -- not lunch, not coffee, nothing.

By following some of the principles above, I was able to pay off all my debt and buy a home a single mother in the 1980's. It can be done.

=== === ===

Absolutely just chock full of GREAT suggestions.
And I've spotted four of them for IMMEDIATE application to my own family, starting this very morning.
Thank you for the detailed run-down.
--BigBunk
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Having earlier reported decreasing our cc debt from 27K to 18K over the past year, we have not been able to maintain that momentum, and find ourselves slowly creeping back up.

My wife not working and grad school are the main culprits.
--- --- ---

Perhaps you could remind her that the National Organization of Women expects her to be an equal partner financially in your marriage and working full time?

Seattle Pioneer


=== === === ===

Well, that's certainly a major consideration.

But maybe, like, to duck ASAP.
--BigBunk
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I have a 2nd job working for Hallmark as a merchandiser. I'm able to set my own hours. The pay isn't the best but it's flexible. 45 minutes at one store, 1.5 hours at another... You simply maintain (restock, straighten, order ---so simple) stock in the non-Hallmark stores that carry Hallmark cards and gifts. You come in when it's convenient for you -- as long as you hit the store 2-3 times a week (depending on the size) you're done. The stock is shipped to the store -- not to your home.

To get started, have your wife call a store that carries Hallmark and ask for the Hallmark sales reps name and phone number. That person would know what stores need merchandisers.

My sister and I have teamed up and have 5 stores. This works really well as we can leverage one another to keep the stores covered and the kids watched. We average about 12-15 hours/week each -- which nets between $350-$400/month.
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I swore I would never have the mentality of wanting the designer clothes for my totster... my sis-in-law does that for her daughter... wasteful in my mind...


But it is nice to find the designer clothes for kids at garage sales.


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I have a 2nd job working for Hallmark as a merchandiser.

Do you get a Hallmark discount too?
Christine
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Thanks for the idea, that sounds doable.

My wife loves to organize things.

;o)

Kaigun Chusa
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Actually, she has done some stuff out of the house. We ended up with a small loss after writing off some office equipment and furniture. One of her main accounts had a change of ownership and has pretty much dried up. Our toddler does not make it easy for her right now.

Hi Kaigun!

Fool, you've been around a long time, so I won't bore you with posting ideas regarding budgets, saving money, cutting back. You already know all that, and it's how you've managed to knock off the 9K worth of debt that you have.

That said, here are my thoughts on your situation...

Not being able to maintain the momentum that you've enjoyed is not a terrible thing. You're in grad school which is an investment in your family's future. Your wife is a stay-at-home mom, which is the choice you've made for your child's future. Not bad at all.

My suggestion is to just do what you can to not build up more debt if possible, and then attack what you have later on, as you are able to once you've landed a job after you've completed the degree. Once your toddler starts school, your wife will be able to take on some employment also.

These are the sacrifices we sometimes make now, in order to secure a better future.

Best,

Tony
...but I still am...

Off2Aruba
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I thought I recalled a board that dealt with selling stuff on line, or was there a thread on that here?

Kaigun,

Aside from the Ebay board, we don't have any board on this topic.

However, it sounds like a good idea, and you're certainly free to request a board on this. Perhaps "Online Buying and Selling" would be a good name for one.

If you (or anyone) would like to request this board, or any new board, just go to http://boards.fool.com/Request.asp?speakerscorner=y.

Hope this helps!

Tony
...but I still am...

Off2Aruba

Are you a Select Fool?
http://www.foolmart.com/Shopping/Product_View.asp?PRODUCT_ID=MF4200_01&REF=CSBO03123
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Honestly, I don't know. I doubt it since we don't work in a HM store. Can you imagine the blank look on the grocery store cashier's face when I would go to ask for a discount?

Would be nice, though. Add to my list of items to ask manager when I talk to her next.
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Honestly, I don't know. I doubt it since we don't work in a HM store. Can you imagine the blank look on the grocery store cashier's face when I would go to ask for a discount?

Would be nice, though. Add to my list of items to ask manager when I talk to her next.


=== === ===
Prolly you can buy quite nice cards elsewhere at a better price.
IMO, those HM cards ain't cheap.
FWIW.
--BigBunk
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Perhaps you could remind her that the National Organization of Women expects her to be an equal partner financially in your marriage and working full time?



Seattle Pioneer

OMG, do you ever stop?

L
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Prolly you can buy quite nice cards elsewhere at a better price.
IMO, those HM cards ain't cheap.
FWIW.
--BigBunk

___________________

Actually, HM offers cards in many, many, many price points -- from .99 to over $5.00. Many retailers now have large sections called Warm Wishes, where they are .99 and another section called Comedy Club, which retails for $1.99. I don't normally go the the Hallmark Stores -- I think their price points are higher.
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Prolly you can buy quite nice cards elsewhere at a better price.
IMO, those HM cards ain't cheap.
FWIW.
--BigBunk

___________________

Actually, HM offers cards in many, many, many price points -- from .99 to over $5.00. Many retailers now have large sections called Warm Wishes, where they are .99 and another section called Comedy Club, which retails for $1.99. I don't normally go the the Hallmark Stores -- I think their price points are higher.


-------------------

Which reminds me I have to stop after work and pick up a couple of Mother's Day cards. I shop at Hallmark but I only get the $.99 cards and use my Hallmark card so I can get the gift certificates and coupons in the mail.

Kim
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Tony,

Maybe they had a thread on that over at LBYM, because i seem to remember people talking about a site called something like half.com.

Tom
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Maybe they had a thread on that over at LBYM, because i seem to remember people talking about a site called something like half.com.

Tom,

half.com is owned by ebay, and is a great site for selling and buying books.

(forgive me if I've missed the point, it could be the Percodan taking over) ;-)

Tony
...but I still am...

Off2Aruba
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Perhaps you could remind her that the National Organization of Women expects her to be an equal partner financially in your marriage and working full time?

I'm not sure if this was meant in a serious tone, or not.

If it wasn't (ie: you're just kidding), I'm sorry to misunderstand.

If it was (ie: you're serious), I think this is a really rotten response to make to someone. I was a stay-at-home mom for seven years. I feel it was one of the *best* choices I made in my life. My son attended day-care part time before Kindergarten to have a change to socialize with a large mix of kids. Otherwise, we did *everything* together. He rarely saw my husband, (who "worked" to pay for this lifestyle).

I got alot of flack for staying home with my son. Members of my husband's family and my circle of friends all commented on me being a "lazy housewife". With women fighting for the chance to work and have careers, the tables have turned, and the attitude seems to have become "If you stay at home, you're not doing work."

I grew up in a single parent household, as a latch-key kid, where I didn't see my mom. I fed myself, did my homework, did housework, and put myself to bed, usually unsupervised (obviously doing more as I got older).

Having experienced "working moms", I promised myself I wouldn't do that to my son. Spending the first seven years of his life *with* him made such a difference for both of us. Now that I've gone back to work, I'm alot less happy as a person. I've taken a job for the next few years that has alot of opprotunities and training built into it, but, I have to work nights and weekends. I spent his birthday at work. I spent Mother's Day at work. I keep telling myself that in another year or two I'll be able to work days and it will be a manageable schedule, but, it's a really rough choice to be missing out on that time with my son.

Two working parents who don't see their kids until they retire...is *not* what NOW was fighting for!

PS -- I *don't* think that it's wrong for two people to work. I certainly understand the other side of the picture. I just have issues with people coming down on women (or men -- dads count too) who *do* choose to stay home with their kid!
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