I am pretty new to Dave Ramsey and his baby steps. I read the Total Money Makeover a few months back and after I put the book down my husband and I got busy putting our money together into joint bank accounts and creating a zero based budget. I thought we were on a roll. We had our debts listed from smallest to highest and paid off our smallest student loan in full.
Then my employer went through another round of lay offs which affected at least 50 employees. Well, it affected us all but 50 positions were cut. The rest of us are left with work loads that exceed capacity and we are barely keeping our heads above water. No one is safe. After the layoffs came the announcement that all “remote” employees living less than 100 miles away from the Institution are required to work in the office beginning September 3rd.
My husband and I have been waiting for this day for the past year and a half. There were rumors that leadership didn’t support remote work and flexibility. Sadly, our debt snowball had to stop and we went into ‘storm cloud’ mode. I scrapped together several thousand dollar over the next few pay periods and we initiated the refinance of our home. When we purchased this house, the sale of our other home came apart 11 days before the closing. We had movers booked and didn’t know what we were going to do.
Our realtor stepped in and managed to get us a bridge loan.This was essentially a private mortgage – interest only -through an investor. He fronted us the cash in full and we have 1 year to pay it back. Our “mortgage payment” is an interest payment on the amount of the “loan” at 2.5% or roughly $600 per month.
Not knowing what would happen with my job, we decided to start the refinance process as soon as the six-month mark hit. We figured it is better to show our dual income to the bank. Everything was going well. It was mid-July and we were excited to get his process wrapped up Then our assessment came back and fell about 16K less than the 80% debt to mortgage ratio we needed. Definitely not what we expected. When I looked at our bank accounts, the money we need to pay the bank is the same amount we have saved. Paying the closing costs will wipe out everything in our budget except our current paychecks. Our Christmas fund…gone. Our car maintenance fund….gone. Our clothing fund……gone. You get the picture.
So here we are, early September and we still don’t have a closing date and it seems the bank keeps adding on expenses to what we need for the closing. We were quoted one price and then another. Until we close, we are eating rice and beans and on a zero spend.
In the mean time, Murphy continues to make his presence known. Our vacuum cleaner is now rubber banded to keep the canister attached, our dog ripped the screen on the back sliding door (it is now duct taped) and my husband is not getting a full paycheck due to an overpayment from his employer during his paternity leave. To boot, my pay for the month of September will be at 50% until the insurance company send me the other 50% of my pay for my last 3 weeks of Paid Family Leave (the last 3 weeks of my maternity benefits). The check should come in early October, hopefully in time for the mortgage payment.
They say, when it rains it pours. Maybe its a test of one’s will and grit to make their way through the rain to other side of the storm.
What do YOU do when Murphy pays a visit? DO you become overwhelmed with stress or do you muster the strength to give gratitude for what you have and move forward?