Post # 17
I totally agree with you about financing cars. Stay away from it if at all possible!
I drove a $525.00 Ford Tempo for 5 years! I put maybe $500 into work in in over that time and didn’t have to have the full coverage on it. I paid like $40 a month to insure it. I just sold it for $600.00. I bought a newer Ford Taurus wagon because I wanted something for when I start a family.
Post # 18
Oops, I didn’t realize you were in the southeastern US, I can totally understand why you need a car in summer. Doing anything outside for 1 mile is going to be gross. Hopefully you can find a good deal and insurance won’t be that much 🙂
Post # 19
I am totally jealous of your budget. I’d love to know where you get rent for $375 and cable for $22 in Atlanta… 🙂 It looks really good and reasonable to me. We are in the process of planning for a new car too (hopefully at least another year out), and I’m thinking we’d like to keep ours under $300 a month. I think $200 is totally doable if you can save up the down payment first. Just make sure you get a good reliable car. Sounds like you are on the right track and doing good with your money.
Post # 20
Not helpful for your question, really, but check out Mint.com!! It’s free, tracks your spending, and you can set GOALS and see how much money you need to save vs. your budget, etc.
I looooveeee it, since my Fiance and I don’t have joint bank accounts.
Post # 21
LOL I don’t actually live in Atlanta, I live in Oakwood. Which is about an hour and 15 minutes away from the ATL. No way I could afford to live there on my current salary lol!
And cable is that low because I don’t pay for any premium movie channels. I’m never home enough to use them! I’m actually considering canceling cable altogether because I hardly ever get to watch tv. But it is very hard to say goodbye to my DVR…lol.
Post # 22
Your budget looks good to me except the phone bill. $93 is a lot! Is there any way you can get a cheaper plan?
Post # 23
Still, paying more a month on the CC for the collection agency will get the amount you own down quicker and that bill out of the way sooner. 1 less thing to worry about sooner than later. Doesn’t matter about interest – the point is getting rid of it. Period.
You should always pay more on your lowest debt to get rid of that debt first, then work on the next lowest, and so on.
Like if I owe
1,000 on a CC
10,000 on a vehicle
100,000 on a mortgage
My main concern would be the CC. It’s the lowest, get rid of that. Don’t pay the minium. Set it at 100. when that’s gone, You have the vehicle and mortgage. Put an extra 100 towards the vehicle to get more of the principal paid than the interest each mont. When that is gone, put the extra 100-200 towards the mortgage principal and get the PMI lowered quicker.
So more-less you want to pay $200 for a car and $50 to a CC instead of $250 for a better car? doesn’t make sense to me, but it’s not my $ or my budget.
I know my system works, because I am not in debt and I have no bills besides a Mortgage without PMI and my utilities.
Post # 24
Is it possible to get a cheaper used car? I drive a 94 Honda Accord that I bought for $2500. My Fiance drives a 2004 Hyundai Accent also for $2500. We spend probably about $200 in repairs on my car every year and about $400 on his. Both of our cars are quite reliable, although mine is better because we didn’t have as much time to search for his when his $500 car he drove for a year finally broke. It feels great to not have a car payment.
I would up the food budget to at least $130 a month. I would also try to coupon as much as possible.
Can you get a cheaper phone bill?
I’m jealous of your rent!
Post # 25
More suggestions for ya! You’re probably getting overloaded by now.
I would not buy a car in that price range. I would buy a car for about $4k. I bought a $2200 in 2009 that was a 1998 Saturn SL Sedan and it’s doing me just fine. OK it doesn’t have AC but I just deal. Especially if you’re working that close to home.
I would not pay over $100/month for a car honestly. Under that would be best. You need money for the car insurance, retirement, savings, health care, etc. I’d make sure my car payment took up a very small percentage of my take home.
Also, I pay $49.10 total for unlimited calls/texts/data with StraightTalk. Cricket has a silimar deal. That’s $574 a year you could save.
I lived without cable for years. Of course I started grad school and worked 30 hours a week, so I rarely even sat IN the living room where the TV was. It wasnt’ that bad. That’s $270 savings a year.
Post # 26
I respectfully disagree. If OP’s credit card debt at collections has no accruing interest, then she should pay that miminum amount. With time, depending on how long that payment plan is, she will actually be paying less than $50 (in present day terms) due to inflation. Moreover, if she uses that extra money she would have been paying into the collections debt and puts it somewhere where it can actually EARN her money, for example, as a contribution to her ROTH IRA, then she will actually start getting ahead of the game.
I also have no debt. My rule is, pay the highest interest loans and credit lines first, and attack the principle if you have extra money. If you are paying loan at 0% interest, pay no extra (because the cost of borrowing is nothing), and put any extra money to either other interest bearing loans, or into saving/investments where it wil earn money for you.
Post # 27
don’t get a car payment! IF you absolutely have to get it on a 4k dollar car and just start paying off all your debts just a little at a time. If you can’t afford to pay more then the minimum on your credit card, you can’t afford a car. Heck you work that close to home i would just ride a bike to work until u can afford to buy a 2k dollar car in CASH! From there you can always save up more money and upgrade the car in a year if you want to.
Trust me, I bought i 10k dollar car and got a 216 dollar car payment when i was making just as much as you and i got screwed. I could never afford the payments and my mom had to lend me money most of the time. Then the car was a hunk o’ junk so i was constantly making repairs. My 3k dollar civic i had before that was a lot better then that, and almost never had a single thing wrong with it and most importantly, it was PAID FOR! Just because the car costs 8k dollars more doesn’t mean in any way its going to give you any less headaches then a 2k dollar car.
If i were you i would pay off that credit card before i even THOUGHT about buying a car. You only have 1400 on it and i’m sure your paying what somewhere close to 20% interest. If you can go 2 months without a car , then you can go 4 months. pay that credit card, then save 2k and buy a 2k dollar car in CASH! You will thank yourself later.
Post # 28
WHY would you pay the minimum amount on a bill, especially to a collections agency? That just hurts your credit score also! Longer payment plan, the longer she goes without extra money in her pocket. The longer she has to pay on a loan. It’s better to just get rid of debt quicker than to extend it out. I’d rather have it paid off in 2.5 years than the 5 year plan if I could afford to pay a little extra here and there. I’d rather put that extra money towards something more useful, like a car instead of a CC payment for another 2.5 years.
And hey, if your plan works/worked for you, more power to you. My plan has been working for me for 20 years of having bills, cars, debt and multiple mortgages.
Post # 29
A 1 mile bike ride takes 5 minutes max. It doesn’t matter if its super hot outside…I would think 5 minutes would be doable.
But if you really need the car, I would definitely get something used and not have any car payment at all. And I agree with those that say to cancel cable. We don’t have it and haven’t missed it at all.
Post # 30
Whatever damage the collections agency will do to your credit score will already have been done by the time you are paying them through a settlement. There is not “extra” damage for paying the payment plan as agreed upon. The way I see it, in the OP’s case, just consider that $50 as never having been there. Auto-debit it, and forget about it. That way, she pays the lowest possible amount to that loan, while being able to use any extra money in a more efficient way. Generally put, it is not efficient to pay extra to a loan that is not costing you anything. The money can be better spent elsewhere.
Of course, we will all do whatever works for us. I’m speaking from strictly a cost and cost of money standpoint.
Post # 31
What about savings beyond the down payment? Like for incidentals (car repair, medicine if you get sick w/o HC) or misc things (toiletries, etc) did you include those with groceries? If you need to cut anything, I’d say cut the cable-I did and Hulu enhanced my life lol