1. #1

    Seeking advice, Or a time machine.

    So, as of last Friday, I was already up to 20,000 in school loans that I have not started paying back, 3,000 that I owe my parents for a car loan and rent a couple years ago. And about 500 on my credit card after my last check. Things weren't terrible, but obviously they weren't great. That day I purchased a cheap iphone at Verizon because things were starting to look up.

    That night, I swerved to miss a skunk, and hydra planed off the road through some bushes and trees and into a 10 foot drop and landed my car on its side in the middle of a pond/creek. The car is totaled.

    I have insurance, but considering what I already owed, with insurance getting up and the difficulty of finding a reliable car in these times for an affordable price without a car payment is next to impossible. I have a month to find one, and have a full time job to get to. I have a month because that is the time I am alotted a rental car from my insurance.

    The bad news is, hours are getting cut everywhere at my job and I am already one of the lowest paid people there despite being complemented on my work ethic and had my name tossed to the district manager for a possble promotion to another store.

    The advice I am seeking, is how I am supposed to manage to pay all of this back, get caught up, and have a comfortable amount of money to actually work TOWARDS my future instead of paying for my past. At 7.75 an hour working 33 hours a week, I feel like I will be living at home paying back debt for the rest of my life and I am only 23 years old.

    I would consider getting another job, but my place of employment has varied shifts and I can't ever be guaranteed that I would have a set schedule to work with another job. (Not including the difficulty of finding another job in this town.)


    So what would you do? Have any of you any creative ideas of earning a decent amount of money on the side? I've considered selling stuff on ebay in an attempt to just get enough money to attempt to pay my parents and credit card off so that I can worry about school loans at a later time. But I don't really have anything worth money aside from a few junk star wars figures, some skeleton keys, and some other random junk that isn't in mint condition or even worth that much value.

    I've considered trying to redevelop whatever miniscule amount of artistic ability I used to have to try and sell stuff on craigslist or etsy, but that just isn't a realistic goal unless you're a phenomenal artist. (Which I'm not.)


    I'm truly at a loss. If only there was some magical cheap business idea I could come up with like these website tycoons that just develop a social networking site or phone app that turn into thriving businesses. But I'm not tech saavy enough for that.

    Anyone have any similar experiences that they've overcame? Or any creative ideas that I haven't mentioned? I mean, I guess kidneys still sell for a decent amount right? What about selling some unborn childen at a bank? How much do they go for these days?


    I am seriously starting to feel like a strung-out broke crackhead ready to do anything for a few bucks.

  2. #2
    Firstly, since I'm pedantic, it's not "hydra" planing, it's hydroplaning, as in skipping over the top of the water.

    Secondly, that sucks, I'm sorry. I'm not clear on how you rang up $20K in college loans and have no real job prospects though? Am I missing something here?

  3. #3
    Well since I just had to refresh the page 17 times because mmo logs me out after 10 seconds of inactivity, and probably won't even post this comment, I guess I'll summarize what I just said.


    I thought it was hydroplaning as well until I saw auto correct on my phone correct me and assumed I was wrong.

    Secondly, it's difficult to even find a job with a bachelor's degree in this economy unless it's very specified. I have friends makng 10 or 12 an hour with their degrees. I actually went to UNCG for a year, realized I was wasting money and didn't have a major so I dropped out to figure things out and go to a technical school. That was 12k+ and then I went to a technical school nearby in hopes to get into a radiology program but can't because it's too competitive. I had to take out the largest loan I could because I needed a car at the time and that helped out.

    That's where that debt came from.

  4. #4
    Where do you live? I am assuming somewhere on the East Coast?

  5. #5
    Where do you live lol? You can't just swerve to avoid animals, that's dangerous.

    What is your degree in? I agree that you should be making more for all that debt.

  6. #6
    First, only swerve to avoid important stuff that if you'd hit would do damage. Like deer...swerve them. Children? Probably should avoid them. Buffalo>car. However...skunks, geese etc...hit them. Honestly I know it sounds bad but... what would you take, higher insurance cost/new car replacement or a dead rodent
    -You are now breathing manually-

  7. #7
    Yeah, I know that. I really didn't swerve that much, but when I corrected I hydroplaned. My back tires were kind of worn down a little and it had started to sleet a little bit before, and had been raining already. So it was just a mixture of a lot of things. And yes, I live on the east coast in north carolina.

  8. #8
    Quote Originally Posted by cptaylor38 View Post
    Secondly, it's difficult to even find a job with a bachelor's degree in this economy unless it's very specified. I have friends makng 10 or 12 an hour with their degrees. I actually went to UNCG for a year, realized I was wasting money and didn't have a major so I dropped out to figure things out and go to a technical school. That was 12k+ and then I went to a technical school nearby in hopes to get into a radiology program but can't because it's too competitive. I had to take out the largest loan I could because I needed a car at the time and that helped out.
    So, if you haven't done so yet, you need to talk to the creditor for your student loans. My understanding is that if you're underemployed, they're typically willing to either defer the loans, or decrease the payments temporarily. If you can do that, you absolutely should. Student loans are typically one of the least painful forms of debt, despite their big numbers. Don't worry about paying that off anytime soon; most decent financial advisors will tell you that debt at such low interest is something you should be in no rush to rid.

    I think the big thing after that is straight up flexibility. Look for jobs of different types, and don't worry too much about what the work is, worry about where you think it'll lead you, even in the short run. If it's something with even a small bit of advancement opportunity, or with any transferrable skills, take it! I realize this isn't easy at all.

    As far as cars, if you can get any help from your parents, I actually would recommend a loan or lease. A monthly payment might not be attractive, but with something like a new Civic, you can have completely fixed costs and not have to worry about repairs, and you'll decrease your gas costs significantly. Sometimes, trying to live as cheap as possible doesn't really pay.

    Best of luck man. You sound like a good guy doing your best, don't get down on yourself. When you can afford to, have fun with your friends, don't think you have to just live like shit because of a rough spell.

  9. #9
    I agree, look up and see if your loan provider has some sort of deferment plan or IBR (income based repayment) plan. If it has an IBR plan, I'd try that first as that may be the best route for you.

    As far as the 20k Student loans. While it's a lot of money for a recent graduate, 20k is manageable amount that won't keep you in debt forever. Just a tip so you don't suffer the same fate as some of my friends have: make sure to keep up to date on your student loan payments. Being behind on student loan payments is a very bad idea.

  10. #10
    Quote Originally Posted by Spectral View Post
    So, if you haven't done so yet, you need to talk to the creditor for your student loans. My understanding is that if you're underemployed, they're typically willing to either defer the loans, or decrease the payments temporarily. If you can do that, you absolutely should. Student loans are typically one of the least painful forms of debt, despite their big numbers. Don't worry about paying that off anytime soon; most decent financial advisors will tell you that debt at such low interest is something you should be in no rush to rid.

    I think the big thing after that is straight up flexibility. Look for jobs of different types, and don't worry too much about what the work is, worry about where you think it'll lead you, even in the short run. If it's something with even a small bit of advancement opportunity, or with any transferrable skills, take it! I realize this isn't easy at all.

    As far as cars, if you can get any help from your parents, I actually would recommend a loan or lease. A monthly payment might not be attractive, but with something like a new Civic, you can have completely fixed costs and not have to worry about repairs, and you'll decrease your gas costs significantly. Sometimes, trying to live as cheap as possible doesn't really pay.

    Best of luck man. You sound like a good guy doing your best, don't get down on yourself. When you can afford to, have fun with your friends, don't think you have to just live like shit because of a rough spell.


    The main thing I'm worried about is that I want to move out and kind of... have even a little room to breathe or live outside of this small town I'm living in, and I wouldn't want to do that plus my student loans. I can get those defered and need to, but I'm not too awfully concerned about those so much as just.. catching up with what I already owe and having enough to be comfortable with what I have coming in. If I could come up with the money to pay my parents back the rest I wouldn't be as concerned about because as you said, they really aren't that much and they are willing to work with you.


    As far as a place to work, I was kind of debating whether I wanted to leave my job. I work at a retail pharmacy, and have been complimented on my work ethic on multiple occasions. But despite that, and having my name thrown to the district manager for a possible promomtion at another store, I just don't see it happening. They've made no effort to get a raise, and the position I am is already constantly overworked anyway. I'm a photo tech yet responsible for seemingly the entire store without the pay to compensate. I've had the pharmacy manager and assistant manager attempt to get me moved or at least trained in the pharmacy which would boost me up to 12.50 if I got moved back there, which is pretty good money. But the store manager doesn't have the budget and doesn't seem to want to, whether it's because he doesn't want to have the extra work of hiring someone else for the front or just doesn't want to give up having me on the front. I don't know. I've also only been there for six months, so it's not like I've been there for an extremely long time. I see plenty of other jobs, that I likely won't ever hear back from, and have applied.. but at the same time I worry that I might be throwing away a chance to get a promotion to either staff leader at another store or pharmacy tech at this store. I have a friend that works in a warehouse making airplane seats for 10 dollars an hour, and I noticed his work is hiring. He has been getting about 52 hours a week, so it's pretty decent money compared to what I make now. But there isn't really a possibility of promotion there and who knows if the hours will be as consistent as his or stay consistent for a long period of time?


    As far as the car goes, I do like your idea. It just worries me having a car payment each month ontop of everything else I owe. Would be nice to have something paid off. Not a bad idea though.

  11. #11
    High Overlord Ycarene's Avatar
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    Look for a different job, not a second one. Keep applying for better paying work even if it seems that no-one is calling you back. You cannot go on the way you are at your current employment be able to sustain any kind of independence. I'd jump to apply to the factory your friend is at, it's a $2.25 raise and more hours, plus if your hours sync up with your friends you can save money by carpooling. You're worried about the chance of promotion within that job, but consider getting the job a promtion in and of itself and you might find that there's more avenues for advancement once you get in and have been there a while..

    How much did the insurance company pay to total the car? How much of that came to you? You might be able to come up with a good enough down payment for another vehicle. I'd avoid a brand new car, go for a "certified pre-owned" car if you can, but do your research first. If you go for a used car (not CPO) you need to do even more research, if you have any mechanic friends or if your parents know a mechanic, have the car inspected first before buying it. Brand new cars and CPO's usually require you to maintain full coverage insurance for financing, used cars usually don't unless the financing absolutely requires it. Also consider licensing fees, the older the car, the less those fees are.

    I don't care what anyone says, there's no shame in living with your parents if it's a way to get back on your feet. Obviously you're not planning on a long term stay, but don't jump to move out just because of pride, have a frank discussion with your parents about the situation and what they expect compared to what you expect.

  12. #12
    Quote Originally Posted by Spectral View Post
    Firstly, since I'm pedantic, it's not "hydra" planing, it's hydroplaning, as in skipping over the top of the water.

    Secondly, that sucks, I'm sorry. I'm not clear on how you rang up $20K in college loans and have no real job prospects though? Am I missing something here?
    Source on it being 'hydra' rather than 'hydro'? Hydro simply refers to water in the context, planing being the 'active' part referring to the skipping.

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