Posts Tagged 'debt consolidation loan'

My mistakes in personal finance…

It was in 2001 that we made our 1st big mistake. By that time, our oldest son, Junior, was about 17 and a junior in high school. When he would bring his girlfriend or other friends over to the house, me and Beulah would have to leave the living room so he could entertain in private. Because we only had one television set in the house, this meant that I would miss “Who Wants to Be a Millionaire” on the nights Junior had his friends over.

So we decided to build a room onto the back of the house to be a kinda entertainin’ room so I wouldn’t miss my TV shows. We didn’t have any money in savings because we had been spending about everything we had on useless crap like “Big Mouth Bill Bass” wall hangings and “Catching Bigger Fish” infomercial products and stuff like that. So where do we get the money for this home addition? How does a home equity loan sound to you?

1st mistake – room addition — $30,000.00.

I don’t even remember the terms of the loan or what it even said. I just know that there was something about a “balloon” and “points” and some other terms that sounds like fun, but really isn’t.

Next mistake, Junior goes off to college. Nope, we didn’t do any kinda college savings or planning. Remember, “When you fail to plan, you plan to fail.” It was okay when Junior was attending the local junior college, but when he went off to the Big University, it got pretty costly. But it was no problem – we had good credit.

2nd mistake – Junior’s college — $8,000.00

Now things went along pretty good here because Junior worked part-time as a meter maid on campus at the University and paid some of his bills and we were able to pay most of his living expenses. But, tuition and books was what ate our lunch.

About the time that Junior graduated, Cletus started college. I never did like the idea of paying rent to some apartment and getting nothing out of it in the end, so brilliant businessman that I am came up with the notion that was the next part of our financial crisis. I always wanted an RV to go camping in. Cletus needed a place to live at the Big University, so I figured I could kill two stones with one bird. I buy an RV, Cletus lives in it while he’s going to college and, in the end, I get my RV that I always wanted. How to pay for it? Who cares, put it on credit.

3rd mistake – Buying an RV — $12,000.00.

Now what I failed to realize is that you can’t just pull an RV with just any old vehicle. So, I just had to have a new Ford F-150 extended cab pickup truck to haul my new toy around. My local Ford dealer was happy to sell me one and finance it, too.

4th mistake – New F-150 extended cab pickup truck — $25,000.00.

So here I sit, $75,000.00 in credit in the hole, and payments that are eating my lunch.

About this time, I find out that the meaning of the “balloon payment” has to do with being a clown for signing up for that kinda stupid deal because the interest rate jumps up and bites me worse than a rabbit being let loose at a Rotweiller show.

Payments are eating me alive, so I did what turned out to be a semi-smart move. I used a debt consolidation loan. It allowed me to roll all of those debts into one smooth easy payment on a 30-year note. The only problem that I see is that it won’t be paid off until I am 76 years old, if I make it that far. And the even bigger problem is that we are still spending everything we make on our stupid lifestyle.

Then something happened that changed my life for good.

To be continued …