Monday, November 22, 2010

Day 22- Something You Wish You Hadn't Done in Your Life

When I graduated high school and picked up my diploma (after the awesome graduation party), I remember that we received several other documents, including a Consumer Fraud pamphlet from Jay Nixon. I kept it, but never read it. This was highly stupid of me.

About 18 months after I graduated, I was dating Brian and somehow he convinced me that we should go to a few auto dealerships and try to take a loan out for a vehicle for me. First, it was for a red Mustang. Denied. Then to the local Dodge dealership for a 2003 Neon. We spent FIVE hours waiting to hear that we were approved, and it was through second chance financing. The following week, after my Dad intervenes and gets the loan moved over to our credit union (and with a significantly lower interest rate), I find out that my credit had been run by 13 different banks before it was approved.

That's only the beginning. After the car, Brian and I got a Best Buy credit card, which came with a MasterCard. I realized that we could get lots of cool stuff and make payments. So then I had an Old Navy card, and then my Visa (which I had since high school but never used) made it's way to becoming maxed out. Then a loan from my bank for deposits for an apartment for him and I. It only took a couple months for me to realize that there was no way I could make all the minimum payments, plus the car payment, and other expenses with our incomes combined.

I had put myself into credit card debt. I say myself because it was my credit that was run for everything; Brian's credit was already bad. So who's responsible for paying of the debt? Me. However, when going through the divorce, it was stated that Brian was to assume responsibility for all debt occurred during our 4 1/2 year relationship. Of course, Brian hasn't done anything about it. But, with the wonderful returns I have been getting when filing taxes, I have been paying off those debts. I only have the Best Buy credit card left to pay off before I am debt free. However, my credit still sucks.

Now I wish that I had read that pamphlet from high school and I would have asked my Dad about credit cards before I got into that cluster fuck of a mess. I could actually have money saved up toward a new car or something with all the money I've had to invest in to keep myself out of financial trouble. If I could give anyone advice about debt... the more you know about how to prevent it, the better off you will be for the rest of your life.


  1. ugh. My credit was ruined in a similar situation with my ex. Cars, credit cards, payday loans, dr. bills. I'm slowly getting it under control. Mike has some credit debt from college.. We're ALMOST credit card debt free. Then we'll be rapidly putting that money into the debt snowball and paying off our cars. Hopefully in the next 2-3 years we'll only have our house payment.

    If you ever are interested I recommend Dave Ramsey. It costs some money to get the program but it's really helped us out in paying stuff down. Just a thought. :)

  2. If it makes you feel any better at all I had gone through an Economics class where we discussed credit cards in depth. Also my dad treated credit cards like another form of currency. So I knew the dangers quite well. I still got myself into BIG credit card trouble. Its one of those necessary evils in the world we live in sadly. And misusing them seems to be a constant in most young adults lives.

  3. This is such a common thing to hear throughout North America (you may recall that I'm Canadian). Personally, my Jeep was repo'd this week because I was behind and could not catch up as fast as the financing company wanted. I have (had?) that Jeep because my ex-wife and I wanted to upgrade but didn't want to wait. Now, instead of denying myself things I wanted for a short time and being able to afford them, I must deny myself not only things I want but many things I may need in order to get myself out of this hole.
    Working as hard as you have to get yourself cleared up is something you should be very proud of, Casey. Keep it up, and remember that we ALWAYS get rewarded for delaying our gratification.