Aye yai yai! Look at that credit card debt?!

I haven’t been this deep in the hole for years — I just did a quick browse of all of my previous net worth updates and I haven’t been this deep since I started this blog.

Ouch. Seems I’ll be back in digging-out mode for a few, um, years again…

The good news is that, though it’s hard to beleive at this junction, I’ve reduced my spending drastically since the last time (between 2006 and 2008) I’ve had to tackle something this large *and* I’ve got some emergency cash available — I’m not “just” getting by.

I’m doing alright.

That — and I’ve done this before. I can do it again.

Here’s the breakdown:

Nice! I finished up three bucks!

This drop stems from the final payment to the contractor for the $40k worth of work we had done on the house. Sure — it’s thrown my finances into a spiral but the end result was worth it.

I’m still unsure if I’ll leave what’s left in here alone or use it to start paying down the credit card debt. I’ve gotta be honest — it hurt to see this number fall below the 5-figure mark. In fact, it hurt more than seeing my credit card balances swell beyond the $20k mark.

Gov’t Bonds:
I haven’t bought any of these for 7 or 8 months now. The fixed return rate on any new bonds, as of November 1st, is 0% so I don’t see myself buying any more this year. The return rate that I’m receiving is pretty decent though so I won’t be selling any of these to pay of debt.

My 401k balance finally broke the $100k threshhold this month and then kept on going. It wasn’t my best month ever but theres something comforting about a fully vested 6-figure balance.

Don’t care about the drop. It still smells fresh and new — even though it’s 135 years old.

Auto 1 & Auto 2:
No complaints here.

Credit Cards:
Okay, so you might be wondering what happened? I told everyone about that 0% offer we used to help finance the renovation back in May but there must be something else going on here…

There is — it’s called a leather couch and a big television. Yep, even though the final payment to the contractor was made, there were some lingering expenses that were necessary. The good news is that I don’t foresee any additional large purchases in 2010.

This balance will start to fall. In a hurry.

Auto Loans and Other Loans:
Zilch. Zero. Nada.

Just another minimum payment. Since the re-fi, I’ve totally flip-flopped and hopped on that bandwagon of folks that say that overpaying the mortgage is stupid. I totally agree with them — but only if your monthly payment is insanely low…


  1. A quick tip…

    To get your finances in order you save up and then buy the couch and TV, not put in on credit and try to pay it off (what’s the interest rate on your CC?)…

    But I’m pretty sure you know that is the ‘theory’ — you just must have some perfectly valid reason why you HAD to have those items right now.

    • Hi EW! Well, I do have enough to flat out pay for the couch and television but I’ve grown accustomed (after so many years of being debt free) to having money in the bank.

      At this point, it’s much more comfortable to be carrying some CC debt than to tap out my savings to the point that I’m living paycheck to paycheck.

      80% of the cc debt is at a zero percent rate (yes, those offers still exist) and most of it went towards the renovation which is something most folks would get a second mortgage for — really, it’s all good. I’ll have it all paid off in a matter of months (any only a couple hundred in finance charges) while your average consumer would pay it down over a 30 year span and pay thousands extra.

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