My life SUCKS! Not my complete life, just the financial aspects of it. And so today I take the first step towards recovering my finances! I have debt, there is no doubt. I owe some very old student loans, I am sure there are some old medical bills, and possibly some utility bills from years ago. (10 of the last 12 years I had no income and was unable to pay on anything.) I don't have much income - in fact I am below the Federal Poverty level (more than 25% below the poverty level, to be more precise) - so getting things paid off will be very hard for me. But I am determined to get my life back, no matter the cost. And step 1 is to find out how much debt I really have. *sigh*
I wrote letters to the 3 credit reporting agencies: Experian, TransUnion, and Equifax. I asked them to send me copies of my credit reports so that I can begin to recover my credit. As I said before, I don't have much income. I have begun cutting down expenses. I don't have TV, my major expenses are internet (which my phone runs through), utilities on the house, car insurance, and gas for the car. My other expenses include paying off a vet bill (will be paid in March), my car payment (paid in May), and a cellphone bill. Which may have to be given up if my hours at work don't pick up and I can't find another job to supplement my income.
I work part-time at a fast food place. i have been there for 15 months now, and I am considered a valuable employee. I have gotten the store three 100% marks on our secret shopper, and I have consistently received glowing reviews and raises every time it rolls around (usually every 3 months). I have been approached by one of the managers about becoming one of them, but nothing has come of that. I also made mention of my desire to move up to the owner. There are only so many more raises I can get as an hourly employee before I am capped off salary-wise. By my estimation, that would be about another 6 months. But for now, with business being so slow, I am getting hardly any hours at all. And I really only need 100 a month to squeak by on my bills.
I am doing a few other things to help, but they are slow going. I belong to a handful of survey sites, and I have a couple that I am able to cash out on a regular basis. Still it's just enough money to cover gas or pay for the luxuries of life - like toilet paper. I clip and use coupons. I have started thinking of knitting hats for an etsy store, and selling items from around the house on ebay. At least in December I will be able to reduce my car insurance! But so far, I'm barely keeping my head above water. Like so many other Americans. And I'm tired of it. So here we go!