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Author: impolite Big gold star, 5000 posts Top Favorite Fools Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: of 308847  
Subject: Re: Advice Needed Date: 3/4/2003 10:16 AM
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It sounds like you have a hole in the ship you haven't found yet. My guess would be the truth lies in tiny expenses deemed "fixed".

If you list your budget (including clothes, groceries, cell phone, etc.) here, we will be able to help you better. If you don't know these numbers, then you need to track expenses for an entire month. Write down everything you spend, from the pack of gum to the mortgage payment. At the end of this month, go back through and categorize each purchase (in groceries, household, clothing, etc.). When I did this exercise, I found a lot of CDs and DVDs included in the "grocery" column, as we shop at WalMart. That was a good category to cut from, as it saved us about $75 a month right off the bat.

NOW, on to the CCs. If you are having cash flow problems, don't even consider another loan! You need to work on the ones you have RIGHT NOW. Make a commitment that the car loan you just incurred is the last one for at least two years. By that time, the notion of borrowing your way out of debt should be gone from your head. It's a nice concept, but it never works. Why?

1) It doesn't change the habits that got you into debt.
2) It doesn't get rid of the debt, just moves it around.
3) By moving CC debt to a Home Loan, you are moving unsecured debt to secured debt. If you miss a few payments on your CC, they are just mean to you. If you miss a few on your house, they take it away.

MBNA: $11,500 balance of $15,000 credit line at 19.99% (They just raised my interest rate because they insist I am a "credit risk".)

You are. You have a vehicle loan for at least 5 years, you just refinanced your house, and you are in CC debt to the tune of $38000. You are a credit risk. PLus, MBNA is kinda poopyheaded, and kick to raise rates. Both things combined = rates raised. Sorry, nothing you can do about it except pay them off.

Discover Card: $5,000 @ 10.74%, $3,000 @ 9.9% thru 06/03, $4,000 @ 5.9% thru 09/03 Credit limit: $12,000

You are paying the highest rate right now, as you can't touch those lower rate balances until the $5k is payed off.

First USA: $3,300 @ 5.9% for the life of the loan
AT&T: $5,700 @ 4.9% (introductory rate may run out, not sure)


Find out if it does.

Chase: $5,500 @ 8.74%

Okay, questions:
1) How much are you paying to each of these in minimum payments each month?
2) How much above and beyond that amount can you use towards paying off debt?

Once we get those two things figured out, we can move on to a PLAN. Plans, my dear, are the heart of a debt reduction plan.

impolite
can't wait to dive in...please post the numbers!
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