My Go Fund Page
Before I got derailed by plague, I was talking about posting a discussion about my financial situation. Right up front I will say that many of our early problems that we are still paying for are of our own making. Borrowing thinking we would be able to pay back and then not getting the amount of money we were expecting. Getting laid off with a child is an enormous financial situation and we handled it badly, especially before our landlord decided he wanted to live in our apartment and we needed to rent something for half the space and more than twice the rent. And then we had two more children, one of whom was completely unexpected. We have certainly changed our spending habits even though we are not perfect. We want our kids to have what they need, and yes, what they want when we are able.
The current problem and most pressing that we’re trying to stabilize is with our home equity loan.
When we bought our house, there were many problems. Many problems. I’m not going to get into those here because that is literally a book in the making. We bought the house and immediately replaced the furnace. The next year we replaced the windows, both of which lowered our utility bill drastically. We are still paying for the windows seven years later (although at an excellent rate.)
But there were other things that needed to be done that were above normal home maintenance, and so we borrowed money from a bank for a home equity. At the time we took out the loan, we had one income.
For the first five years, we were to pay the interest only, and then the rate would change to include the principal. We anticipated that in five years I would have a job and my husband would have gotten raises, and we’d be able to do this. But if we didn’t, it was okay.
The bank had said that we could extend the interest only payment for another five years for a $50 (but the amount might change) fee. We were not worried having that assurance from the bank when we signed the contract.
In the meantime, I became ill and did not get a job. The economy tanked. My husband’s raises were eaten up in taxes, house repairs, health insurance, gas for the car and groceries which had increased practically exponentially.
In the year before the bill was to come due, we were told that they would not extend the interest only payment, our payment would indeed TRIPLE (from $95 to $404/month), and I should look for a job. (Yes, they actually told me this despite the fact that they gave us the loan on our one income and I was ill with problems walking.)
When the economy crashed and burned, our house went down in value, almost $25.000 less than what we paid for it, $35000 less than it was appraised at when we took the loan.
I tried to get the bank to honor their verbal agreement that we could extend the interest only payments. They said it wasn’t in the written contract, no one at that bank would have told me that (I took notes, but it’s seven years ago and I don’t know where that folder is). I asked if continuing to pay the lower amount would benefit us; I was told no, only the full amount, so I used that $95 for my medication as my insurance had ceased paying for the year until my deductible was met (it never was that year.)
As it stands now, we’ve been sued (and lost with a summary judgment and possible wage garnishment* of 10% our gross income, which is more than the triple amount that we couldn’t afford before.)
We were refused the opportunity to appear in court. We would like to pay; we can’t afford to.
Now, we’ve found out that our net income has been reduced by $124.10 each month due to higher health insurance costs.
We are once again in our deductible period, and our co-payments, co-insurance and prescriptions will cost more this year when we couldn’t afford it last year. We were barely making ends meet as it were and I still owe medical bills for my children and me from as far back as 2012.
*As of this writing we were served with an income execution for 10% of our gross salary. What this means is that every two weeks, we need to turn over $194** to the sheriff’s department or they will garnish my husband’s wages through his employer (this is never a good idea – many people get laid off when these kinds of financial crises occur.)
** This was my estimate of 10% after taking out the pre-tax amount the company gives us for health insurance. It is semantics, I know, but the company calls it income, but we never actually see it. We give it all back in premiums and then some.
So, this is the gist of our story.
We know many people are in our position, and that there are many worthier causes.
I’m posting in this much detail and asking for the internet’s help once again. We’ve modified our first mortgage and hope that will keep our head above water, but with this judgment and garnishment, I’m not sure how we will survive.
We’ve also requested a reduction and/or a stay of income execution in the garnishment, but we’ve been denied everything else thus far, so I have no real hope for these options and have so far, gone unanswered.
We have a Go Fund Page, and if anyone is able to help, we would greatly appreciate it and so we are blogging our page and praying for the best. Good wishes and prayers are always welcome.
Thank you for reading and we appreciate any reblogs and donations that can be offered.