So broke :(

Discussion in 'Teacher Time Out' started by princessa48, Sep 21, 2008.

  1. princessa48

    princessa48 Companion

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    Sep 21, 2008

    Grrr, I am so broke it is not even funny. I really don't understand why I don't have any money. I do not make lavish purchases, in fact, I have bought anything but necessities for a very long time. Right now I have about $80 to my name, and my son has school pictures on Tuesday. I'm sick of being a working professional who can't afford to live :( I'm seriously considering selling some of my unneeded items on craigslist, just so I can pay my bills. I don't live extravagantly, don't have credit card debt, yet I feel sick just thinking about finances. I'm so tired of barely getting by!
     
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  3. Ms. I

    Ms. I Maven

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    Sep 21, 2008

    That's rough. I know what you mean. When you say you hv $80, do you literally mean that's ALL you hv? You mean zero in your bank acct(s)? The end of this yr should be better for me than right now.

    There were times I've thought about what things I have around my house that I can sell. I've had a couple of yard sales, but they are a lot of work & I'll try my best to never hv another.
     
  4. peggy27

    peggy27 Cohort

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    It is tough right now. I can't believe the prices of groceries. $6 for 4 double rolls of toilet paper. Hamburger is $4 a pound. You work hard but still go further back. I know how you feel. I feel lucky that both my husband and I work and seem to be okay. I don't know how single parents do it.
     
  5. SpecialPreskoo

    SpecialPreskoo Moderator

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    Tell me about it. We barely get by and sometimes we squeeze every last cent to get by. My thing is credit card debt that I'm getting paid off. Once that is paid off with my consolidation program, we'll have more money. Until then it is skimp and save the best you can. We have to buy the cheapest foods we can find. We carpool to save gas money.

    Just about everyone can feel the pain in their pocketbook.
     
  6. smalltowngal

    smalltowngal Multitudinous

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    I know how you feel!! With me not working (still looking for that job) and DH making peanuts, it is very tough to pay our bills. The only saving grace that we have had is the loans from my school. We haven't been able to spend money on anything lavish in a long time, and that's hard because he had a job that paid well and we were able to afford some extra things then. He quit because he was over 4 hrs away and his supervisor was verbally abusive. It has been tough for the past few months, but we know that eventually when we both have good jobs (he's getting his Bachelors', me my masters) that we'll get to a place where we can actually SAVE money.
     
  7. DaTeach

    DaTeach Comrade

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    Sep 21, 2008

    Gas is so high, and then that makes the groceries and everything else we need to live go up. I don't go anywhere except to work and to buy groceries every two weeks. It is just ridiculous. All of my bills are paid and my needs are met, but I'm in the same boat. I have no extra money. I'm glad it is close to payday. Most people I work with are in the same boat. It is just the economy. We have even reduced our eating out except once during the week (like Subway) and somewhere nice after church on Sundays.

    I don't drink milk, but my husband does. It is almost 5 bucks a gallon!
     
  8. SpecialPreskoo

    SpecialPreskoo Moderator

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    DaTeach, my DH drinks milk like it is going out of style!! Thank goodness Emily gets it at daycare. I don't feel so guilty about not having it in the house all the time for her. That was one thing I liked when she was on formula, DH couldn't drink THAT... lol. I thought we'd be saving money once she got off of it on and on regular milk... wrong. If we have anymore kids, I'm going to keep them on formula as long as I can... milk may cost an arm and a leg by then.
     
  9. giraffe326

    giraffe326 Virtuoso

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    I can also commiserate. I get paid once a month. I looked at my checking and I had about $130 in there. I needed gas but was OK on everything else until Friday when I get paid from my other job (I get paid on the 30th for my teaching position). Fine.
    Well, I bought a new car this month (because I hit the mile limit on my lease). I had to break my lease. Well, I bought a Dodge and GMAC has not been cooperating with my lease pay off. So, I was informed yesterday that they were mailing me a check for the lease pay off and I have to take care of it myself. Well, my payment was due on the 20th and I called GMAC- the payment is being processed and they can not stop it. So, they are going to take $300 from my account that has only $130 in it- and my gas light is on :eek: I have my "house money" but that is in my bank account in Michigan. So, I wrote myself a check and deposited it today to hopefully cover this issue. Well, they are holding all but $50 of my check until the bank balances the ATM. Ummm..... I am going to go to the ATM and deposit a few more checks in $50 increments. I hope this works. I do not want to pay all these penalties.
    As soon as I get that check from the car dealership, I am fine (sort of). Between not getting paid over the summer and the new car purchase, my $9,000 is now $6,500. And I am house shopping. :eek: My goal is to be back to $8000 by the end of October. I think I can do it. As long as my bonus check comes in October......
     
  10. MissWull

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    I can feel you guys. We live with my parents for the time being, because I'm waiting for that teaching job to tell us where we should move. We figure if we move out now and then I end up teaching far away, what's the point of moving again. We do get to put a good amount toward debt (never seems like enough), but in the end we NEVER get to buy ourselves anything nice. It's hard because I hate when we do go out and my husband sees something he wants (not often) I have to say no because we can't afford it, I hate that feeling. :( He makes the money for now and here I am saying no you can't get that. I can't wait for the day I get that job...AND for the economy to start looking up, sheesh!
     
  11. cosmoteach

    cosmoteach Rookie

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    I hear you! I have had some luck with selling unwanted/unneeded items on craigslist. I have found quite a few things that I did not need or want and then sold them there. It always surprises me when people will spend money on some of the things that were just taking up extra space in my house. I agree with you though, it stinks being a working professional and having to struggle like this!
     
  12. smalltowngal

    smalltowngal Multitudinous

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    Do you not get paid in 12 month increments?
     
  13. SpecialPreskoo

    SpecialPreskoo Moderator

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    I know several teachers have 2nd jobs. My DH is a custodian during the day and at night and weekends he referees and umpires HS and little league football and baseball games during their seasons to help get extra money. We do yardsales to get extra $ when we get around to gathering up stuff. Sometimes we do rather well, other times, no so well with sales. I've sold stuff on ebay before but it gets discouraging when you don't make what you wish you could make off of things or you see comparable stuff you have going for nothing hardly, if it even sells at all.
     
  14. Upsadaisy

    Upsadaisy Moderator

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    I just heard about this place where you can sell books. I haven't looked into it yet myself, but here's the site:

    www.cash4books.net

    Supposedly, they send you the mailing lable prepaid, then pay you for the books after they receive them.
     
  15. giraffe326

    giraffe326 Virtuoso

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    10 month. This year we had an option for the first time to get paid 12 times instead of 10. I chose to continue with the 10 month increments because I could not handle the smaller pay check for August. Plus, by next summer, I will be fine. I just started working a 2nd job in May and spent most of my summer savings on a plane ticket home for my mom's 50th b-day. So, I was flat broke at the BEGINNING of the summer.
     
  16. smalltowngal

    smalltowngal Multitudinous

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    Ah, I see. Here it's just a given that its 12 months. I've always opted for the 13 month pay where I get a check in August instead of waiting until Sept. I know it means less but its better than having to wait a whole other month for money.

    I was just hoping that NC schools didn't require you to do 10 or 12 month pay.
     
  17. Teaching Grace

    Teaching Grace Connoisseur

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    I hear all of you loud and clear! My fiance lost his job 6 weeks ago and we have had to ask his parents this month to help us buy formula, diapers, and pay for daycare for our 8 month old this month. I'm hoping he gets a job soon (several interviews lined up!) I'm not sure how we'll get through October if he doesn't. We are getting married mid-October and will owe several hundred dollars on final payments to different people and we barely have it made for this month! It's so hard! But we'll make it as will everyone else... that's what I keep telling myself!
     
  18. bonneb

    bonneb Fanatic

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    It is hard these days and it is always hard when you are starting out. We had it much harder in our 20s and 30s than now. We lived on one income for years.

    Here are a few tips:

    Go to second hand stores on a regular schedule. People often give away name brand clothing in good shape!

    Record your own movies from TV to watch later. Or disconnect cable for a while and get movies from the library. Ditto for books - no more buying, go to the library! Ours will order brand new books that we request at no charge!

    for milk - my parents had 5 kids and they would mix whole milk with powdered milk, making it low fat and the powdered was cheap. It is pretty good if it is really cold!

    Cheap meals: (of course mostly from scratch)
    tuna casserole
    lentil soup
    beans with ham hocks and cornbread
    stir fry, using veggies that are on sale
    rice and beans

    some of the most nutritious and cheapest foods:
    peanut butter
    tuna
    dried beans
    whole chickens (buy when on sale and freeze)
    oatmeal - buy in bulk, old fashioned

    Hang in there! I know it is tough but things will get better. Can any of you qualify for WIC, which would give you free/cheap milk, cheese, cereals? Check it out - when we are on hard times is when we need to take a turn at getting some help. Church pantries will also help with food once a month if you are struggling - let them help you!

    I know that we all get used to being able to have "things" and it is hard to not be able to have them. But in the end, it is kind of freeing to not be tied to those things. I have friends who did not understand why I couldn't go out to eat all the time, why I only "window" shopped, why I didn't buy everything that caught my eye - now they are so deep in debt that they will probably never get out.

    Princess - good for you that you are living within your means, no credit card debt - that puts you very far ahead. Once you all get on your feet, you will be far ahead of people with great debt.

    Just FYI - I am not slamming people with credit card debt, just pointing out that if you don't have it you are far ahead on the road to getting on your feet and being able to save and not worry so much about money.
     
  19. shouldbeasleep

    shouldbeasleep Enthusiast

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    Amen! I'm broke. (See post on stolen ATM/credit card)

    But I look at my statement and I think, "Why am I buying this garbage?" I don't need Starbucks. I don't need more resource books from Scholastic. I don't need to go out to eat.

    Ideas:
    No more buying coffee at Starbucks and Dunkin' Donuts.
    Save dump fees by putting trash in school dumpster.:haha:
    Cancel house phone and just use cell.
    Shoot everything I want to print to school and use their ink.
    Eat more peanut butter sandwiches.
    Park the truck and don't use it for anything.
    Drink more water and less milk.
    Fill water bottles from my faucet. It's good water, I just don't have
    an icemaker. I can freeze it part way.
    Buy soup or make soup.
    Don't vacume. It uses electricity. :unsure:
    No more cat treats. They're spoiled anyway.
    No more buying books for awhile. Get them from the library.

    Any other ideas, people?
     
  20. SpecialPreskoo

    SpecialPreskoo Moderator

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    Sep 22, 2008

    Cheap meals... RAMEN NOODLES!!! for a change, throw in some veg-all then brown some hamburger meat and throw it in there, too. TA DA! Sorta like a Poor man's hamburger helper but cheaper. Ramen noodles are what... 13 -20 cents a pack depending on the brand and where you get them and veg-all, get the store brand for 50 cents.
     
  21. Weazy

    Weazy Comrade

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    Isn't formula more expensive than milk? It was when my kids were on it. I couldn't wait for them to switch to milk. We go through at least a gallon a day, and it is still cheaper than formula! I have two boys (21 & 17), but I don't mind buying milk--just as long as I don't have to pay for formula again! :lol:
     
  22. time2teach

    time2teach Companion

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    Sep 22, 2008

    For those going through these tough financial times...I feel your pain. We've been there/done that. I love all the practical ideas that everyone is posting....here are a few others...

    Unplug anything that you aren't using...lots of chargers, appliances, etc pull a trickle of power even when not in use. If you can afford the new lightbulbs they have out, they WILL save you money on your energy bill. Also use a towel, etc to plug any drafts you have by your outside doors.

    Milk - mix powdered milk in with the regular milk to make it last longer. No one needs to know besides you. LOL. You can also use powdered milk in any recipe that calls for milk....soups, mac and cheese etc.

    Groceries- Get the customer loyalty cards. Shop and plan your menu by the weekly adds. If chicken is on sale....take advantage and make several chicken dishes. Or buy alittle extra and freeze it. I have become the "coupon queen" according to my family. LOL It takes time but it is well worth the effort. Check you area stores and see if any double your coupon value. The store may be a "higher end" store but their coupon policies may make it worth going for just the items on sale and with coupons. I just got $230 worth of food for $65 this past week. There are several websites both free and subscription that can help you with couponing and saving money. The Grocery Game, Hot coupon World, The coupon mom....are a few sites.

    Health and Beauty items - these are a KILLER on the budget right? Try not to be too brand specific. Watch the drug stores for good sales, get their customer cards, take advantage of their rebates, etc. CVS and Walgreens are two that you can do super well at if you learn how to use all they offer.

    Coupons - you don't have to buy a Sunday paper to get coupons, ask around, check your local coffee shop etc. You can fine someone who doesn't want their coupons...most people don't bother with them.

    Entertainment - Find all the free or really cheap stuff you can. Take the kids to a park, a museum, etc. Set up a scavenger hunt for them. Have a game night one night a week. Pull out the board games. Date nights with your hubby - wait and go out after dinner, or when you go out share a meal. Not only will you save money, but you will eat less! Invite friends over for a game night.

    Call your creditors, if you have been a faithful customer and are just falling on a difficult month or two..many times they will work with you. We have had them add a payment to the end of a loan so we don't have to make a payment that month, reduce the percentage on a credit card, forgive a late payment charge, etc. If you are upfront with them, you will get alot farther than if you avoid them, lie to them and tell them its in the mail etc.

    Craigslist, Ebay, yardsales, half.com - take this time to go through your stuff and see what you can sell. Sometimes the "thrown together" yardsales we have done have been better than the planned out -organized ones. Also look there if you NEED items.


    I could go on and on....but will spare y'all for now...lol
     
  23. SpecialPreskoo

    SpecialPreskoo Moderator

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    I bought the walmart brand. It was expensive but DH can drink a gallon a day if you let him. NO JOKE. It is a good thing it doesn't contain alcohol, he'd be a drunk. LOL Oh, I thought we'd be saving money, too, but I was wrong. $10 a can for formula that would last more than 2-3days with her a gallon of milk would barely make it a day. I guess what ticked me off more was the fact HE WOULD drink it all and then when I needed it for her, there wouldn't be any and I'd send his greedy butt to the store to buy more. At least I knew the powder would still be in the can when I needed it. :)
     
  24. bonneb

    bonneb Fanatic

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    Hey try mixing up the powdered for your child. It's cheaper and maybe DH won't drink as much, and you will have some on hand to mix up when you need it.

    I have to stress going to the second hand stores on a schedule. That is what my friend did and she had a beautiful wardrobe! You could also get clothes you don't wear anymore into a consignment store and earn a little extra money that way.

    I agree - if at all possible, park the car and use public transportation. Don't take the kids shopping with you! And use the library for everything. Even the newspaper.Cut out anything you aren't using or don't really need - cable, home phone, internet connection at home - use the one at work for free!

    We should make a game of it - maybe a new thread: what did you do to save money today?
     
  25. SpecialPreskoo

    SpecialPreskoo Moderator

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    OR husbands... lol He's just as bad.
     
  26. TeacherNY

    TeacherNY Phenom

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    The last time I went shopping with my hubby I think we spent about 30 bucks more than usual. He kept putting extra JUNK in the cart and I didn't notice until we were checking out!
     
  27. smalltowngal

    smalltowngal Multitudinous

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    And I bet that he pulled the whole "How did that get in there?!?" complete with shocked expression.
     
  28. dizzykates

    dizzykates Habitué

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    I shop alone, unless I know I am getting a lot of stuff (we walk to the store) and then I need my hubby to help carry stuff. He is pretty good about letting me get what we need and get out. I just make extra sure I don't linger and look at stuff because then he will decide we should have it. Generally, we end up with one or two extra things when he goes, but it's worth the help and it's usually not that much.

    We make a date to the library when we want to read or need something to do. This time we got a book to read together.

    We discovered a restaurant tonight that has $2 appetizers until 5, so we can just meet right after work and have a good "meal" for less than 10 bucks. It's a fancy restaurant to boot!!

    We batch cook, so when we don't want to cook there is always something in the freezer and we eat brown rice with almost everything which saves on potatoes and bread, which frankly are getting expensive too.

    Other favorite activities: games, a glass of wine on the patio, cleaning something out, redbox rentals when we KNOW we will watch it, long walks, bike rides, snowball fights, and reading to each other

    We also eat at my moms house about once a week. I bring a side dish, she makes the meal, we help clean up and hang out for a while and we get lunch for the next day. Good deal!

    Good luck! We aren't strapped for cash, but I want to stay home when we have kids, my husband is starting grad school and we want to buy a house in the next few years. All those things mean we need to get a good savings account together.
     
  29. loves2teach

    loves2teach Enthusiast

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    I love free redbox rentals

    http://www.insideredbox.com/codes/


    My hubby had to turn down a very good paying job today. With benefits... I cried! Hopefully we can make it until he finishes school!
     
  30. TeacherNY

    TeacherNY Phenom

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    Yeah, I shop alone 99% of the time. I just had surgery that one time so my hubby came along to help. I should have went alone and saved 30 bucks LOL
    I am pretty much broke until payday on Friday. Broke meaning only a few bucks in my checking account. I DO have a savings account but I had to borrow from it this month because I had to buy a present for a relative. Hopefully, I will be able to put the money back this week. I like having some savings just for an emergency. I don't know where all my money goes either. We don't go out for entertainment, we go out to eat maybe once a month (if I'm lucky LOL). I should start writing down what I spend each week and maybe I can figure it out :confused:
     
  31. smalltowngal

    smalltowngal Multitudinous

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    That stinks!
     
  32. DaTeach

    DaTeach Comrade

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    I like that part about not vacuuming...can I give up laundry too??? Yippee! I hate doing both...
     
  33. SpecialPreskoo

    SpecialPreskoo Moderator

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    LOL DaTeach... I'm there with ya!
     
  34. bonneb

    bonneb Fanatic

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    Haha! Yes, I think in the interest of our budgets and Global Warming, we should stop doing so much housework!!

    Here is a good money saver. Put your laundry through an extra spin cycle - they will dry faster. Also, put clothing in the drier for only 5 minutes, then hang everything up. It will dry without wrinkles. Or do the opposite - hang to dry then run in the drier for about 5 min w/a wet towel, and the wrinkles will come out. I hang wet clothing in the furnace room, so all that heat build up is put to good use.

    I know unplugging everything helps too. Juneau, AK actually had their electrical towers wiped out by an avalanche this past winter. They were on generator electricity, and the cost of fuel was just beginning to skyrocket. Everyone was asked to unplug everything until they were going to use it, and they used alternative heating - cut total electrical consumption by 33% over all!!!
     
  35. SpecialPreskoo

    SpecialPreskoo Moderator

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    Going back to the no vacuuming to save money. Don't dust either... pledge and endust cost money... lol so do swiffers, can't use old t-shirts either, got to wear them, can't afford new ones... LOL

    Forget cooking... the ingredients cost too much and so does the oven to cook it. Get cheap store brand bread, cheese, lunch meat and mayo. Save more money, eat it dry - no mayo.

    Drink water - even cheapo store coolaid costs money.

    Stand over the sink to eat, won't need a plate, glass or paper. Glass you have to wash, paper you have to keep buying. Just put your head under the faucet to drink the water so you won't dirty a glass.
     
  36. DaTeach

    DaTeach Comrade

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    I can't do without my computer though!!! and hot baths....I took enough cold showers after Katrina knocked out our power for 3 weeks....I had enough of those...

    I like your ideas, Special!
     
  37. crinkles

    crinkles Rookie

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    everyone here has had good tips and yeah times are tough for most people. I am blessed with a decent paying job even though it makes me feel horrible, yet I am thankful for my job. we can't afford to buy a house but live pretty comfortably.

    If there are three words to managing finances they are budget, budget, budget...
    (i'm not having a go at anyone here it is just how we keep track of our $)
    for example, if you have a $300 electricity bill due 9 months from now... put away $34 every month in an envelope somewhere... it can even be an imaginary envelope like a spreadsheet.

    do that for every single expense you can think of (oil changes, groceries, clothes, fuel) and it should work out OK and will show you where you can shave off $$$. Over time you will fine tune your budget so well that there will be money left over to save or invest

    It is hard not to spend that money but when the bill comes and you can put the money down without breaking a sweat, it sure is a good feeling.
     
  38. crinkles

    crinkles Rookie

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    I reckon there is this secret government (or corporate, for that matter) sensor embedded in everyone's car which KNOWSwhen your wallet is low... then it makes all your bills come in AT ONCE at that very point in time... for us it's usually June/July/August
     
  39. jenngugs

    jenngugs Companion

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    Haha, this had me hysterical. Also reminded me, my grandmother's best friend used to re-use paper towels to save money. I remember going to her house and seeing wet paper towels laid over every surface drying out.
     
  40. bonneb

    bonneb Fanatic

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    Ok, I thought of some more ways to save money!

    My friend saved all her bread bags and veggie bags from the store (veggie bags have to be washed or turned inside out to use). She used these for sandwiches, etc., in her family's bagged lunches. She figured she saved about $12.00 a week this way!

    I heard a woman on K-love yesterday who had some good ideas: shop at the plain stores, not the fancy stores; buy off brands; buy whole chicken instead of cut up (it is cheaper and easy to cook!); buy a whole pork loin and cut it up yourself for porkchops (the butcher will usually do this for you if you ask); make your own baby wipes -!yes!-cut paper towels to the size to fit one of your empty containers, douse with water and a few drops of baby bath!

    I think we should all make this a game and post what we have saved and how! I am saving by hanging my laundry in the furnace room - warmest room in the house - instead of putting them in the dryer. Then I fluff just before I put them on. I figure I am saving about $25.00/month this way. Of course, I have wasted that by leaving lights on all night several times. :p

    Anyone else?
     
  41. tgi1515

    tgi1515 Comrade

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    Sep 27, 2008

    :lol: BUT... I already do this and I'm STILLLLLL broke. (OK, I do eat on plates but only run the dishwasher when absolutely crammed full.) I got down to $28.26 in my checking this month. I can't stand to tell my boys that they can't have school pictures or be in sports. They are already on reduced lunches, and stretch every meal.

    I think I'm going to check out the Angel Food program. We send home flyers in backpacks every month. Food for $30 and it doesn't look too bad. Does anyone else do this?
     

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