A Bit of Background

I was born into a family that did farming, for most of my childhood I wore hand-me-downs and simple clothes. I cannot begin to even count the number of sweatpants I had growing up. I started to develop a niche for computers around the fifth grade and by the time I was in the ninth grade, I was starting to generate income from my computer knowledge.

I grew up in a small Western Kentucky town and have lived at the same address for my whole life. I attended public school before I graduated from High School. The big fail I think of public education is lack of financial education. More emphasis is placed on knowing Algebra then learning about balancing a check book or the bad side of debt.

On the academic side I enrolled in dual credit classes in High School and I’m currently a student in college. This leads me to where I am now. My tuition for Fall/Spring semester is paid by two scholarships that is based upon good grades/ACT score. Books, etc. on the other hand are not covered, so being the unknowing student I took out Student Loans, to the full amount of $5,500. What happened to this after the books? Not even I’m sure. I would pay my bills just fine and as soon as I deposit the check it’s like my income goes down, by the time I move it out the account a large chunk was gone.

I started to notice how when I would pay a little here or there just how much was interest.  One payment I made went all toward the interest and I still owed more interest. If it’s like this for student loans, I would hate to see what other people pay on upside down mortgages.

41 thoughts on “A Bit of Background

    • I plan on actually getting a nice theme up after I figure out what direction the site will go. I didn’t figure I would already have comments by day 10, so it’s doing better then I expected.

      • If the car loan and the student loans are your only debt, you are much teebtr off leaving these separate from each other. However, if you have not already done so, you should go ahead and consolidate your student loans (but keep separate from the car loan). Doing so allows you to lock in to a low interest rate, and you do not lose any of the advantages of your student loans. For example, if some or all of your loans were subsidized, that portion of your consolidated student loan balance will remain subsidized.Student loans carry possible tax advantages the interest can be tax deductible and they also can be eligible for deferment and extended terms if you lose your job at any point in the future or you fall on hard financial times. If you were to consolidate your student loans with your auto loan, you would lose those advantages.Pay off the car loan as soon as possible, but you can take more time with the student loans. It’s probably the least expensive debt you have. Once you earn a higher salary and have some savings set aside and have paid off your car loan, then you can get to work paying off your student loans.

        • Right now it shows up as just one loan for the Student Loans and I don’t have a car loan. But the only student loans I could get were unsubsidized, which I do want to pay off as soon as I can.

        • The interest from a pay day loan is atoruiocs. Definitely a last resort. For an amount that small, I would try a close friend or a relative. And then pay it back the very first thing. Asking a new employer about an advance is probably going to raise a bunch of warning flags on their part unless the new employer is related to you (as in your uncle or aunt, etc.).Perhaps your mother who’s tardy paying your credit cards on time could help out as well. You could also try a site like but I’m not sure if you’re below their minimum amount. What’s you’re going to want to do when you start your new job is to set aside money for times like this in your future.

        • do not go to a payday ledenr unless you want to pay back about 1000 for the loan === look you can live on very little for the next two weeks == and if you seem to working out on the job you might be able to get a pay advance from you boss if you ask nice and do not expect the world!!!

        • You certainly could apply for a cash aavcnde. The charges to you aren’t good, if you need $150 it will cost you around $180.As long as you don’t plan to use them all the time, cause they are good, but only in emergencies.You can find a few good companies at

        • Credit Score is not all they look at, must meet minimum debt sevcire ratios, your cosigner if you have and they look your job.A small loan consolidation with low interest is the best I found interesting information about your answer options here.

      • The traditional loans ruothgh non subsidized programs will not be possible with such a low credit score. The lenders will still look at your credit and a score of 445 will not qualify. If it was low because of lack of credit, then it would be different, but since you have other negative issues on your credit, they would consider you too high of a risk.You should consider applying for as many grants or scholarships as possible to make up the rest of your tuition.

        • Debt CONsolidation is a joke. It doesn’t fix anything. Btw, those crmmuy debt management places will trash your credit even worse than it was a lot of them are under investigation by the FTC. You will be better off in the long run to learn how to manage your OWN money get out of debt. CONsolidating your credit cards onto the house you sleep in is an ultrahorrible idea. I have been deeply in debt near bankruptcy. I’m NOT anymore. I don’t even have any credit cards NOPE, NOT ONE! We live on a budget that actually balances, so we have no desire to borrow. We follow Dave Ramsey’s Total Money Makeover . It has worked wonders. Also, you can tune in to podcasts of his radio show on his website (free). I sincerely hope you will do it. Everyone should have the peace of mind that we have.

        • Those might work. You could also try your employer for an adnavce, but it might not look good. Nevertheless, people do it. Either option will cost you a percentage of the amount.

        • I had to get out of the trap by paying sllowy, I did not have much choice in the matter. Another option, if you go throught the loans section in the phone book, some of them will give you a very small loan (they will require Serial Numbers from anything you own though)then you can start to rebuild your credit that way.

        • American Express will permanently blsiklcat you, if you have a bankruptcy in your past. The only way that you might get around this is if you have a partner with good credit who will apply for the card on behalf of the business, and then add you as an authorized user later.If you need to establish business credit, you will need a Tax ID#, which I am sure you already have. Next, you will need a Dunn Bradstreet Number. Don’t let them force you to pay money to have a report established. They will try to sell you services, but you can get a number at no charge. Each year, you can voluntarily provide your business financial information to them. None of this costs money. They will try to tell you otherwise, but do not believe them!As far as cleaning your personal credit, work with National Consumer Rights Alliance. They have removed things that you would not believe could even be removed from reports! Even bankruptcies. Their website appears below.In order to get your business credit established, it helps to have about six people who have extended you credit to report to D B. Start with your CPA, attorney, local printer, and landlord. After that, you can set-up business accounts with Office Depot, Home Depot, Lowe’s, and others quite easily. As you build your credit with these companies, they will report your payment history to D B, and that will generate a PayDex Score. NEBS, Reliable Office Supplies, National Sanitary Supply, and U-Line all give easy business credit and report as well.Once you have been in business for two years, and you have a good payment record, you should have little problem getting business credit without a personal guarantee. Dell Computer will give you credit after you have already been established at least one year.Business credit cards (Visa, Amex, MC) do not report to D B, but may report to Experian Business. Do everything that you can to avoid having to provide a personal guarantee for any business debt. If you must give a PG early on, try to get it removed after six to twelve months of good payment history.The second link below will give you a large business credit line (up to $25,000) that will report as a positive account to D B. You can also set-up a personal line ($5K to $10K) with the same source.I wish you luck, both in your business, and with your personal credit situation.

        • There is a website (can’t rmebmeer name) But instead of banks giving loans, it is regular people giving loans. I would try googling it and try to see if you can get a loan that way.

        • This isn’t a direct ansewr but maybe you’ll get more specific and solid advice from Suzie Orman’s Fabulous and Broke book. My financial situation is much more extreme, but when i looked at that book i felt like it was a great guide for general population in debt.

      • Have you tried getting a loan threw your ceollge? A lot of times it the ceollge should be able to help you get approved for a loan. I would go talk to your financial aid office, thats why they are there. Have you applied for financial aid? If not they will help you do whatever they can. Best of luck to you!!!

      • Unfortunately some unethical onipacmes and agents are taking advantage of the fact that so many consumers are in serious financial trouble. Because of this, the term credit card debt consolidation is being abused, and is now being used to refer to both debt management and debt settlement. So, you must be sure of what you are getting into before you sign on the dotted line. Debt management should be considered if you are barely able to make the minimum payment on your credit card account. If you opt for debt management, your card issuer will close your account and reduce your fees and/or the APR. This will have a marginally negative impact on your credit. Debt settlement is a bit more risky. When you choose credit card debt settlement, you withhold payments from your credit card onipacmes, intentionally defaulting on your account. Doing this will destroy your credit score, but it’s done with the hope that, at some point your credit card issuers will be willing to settle for much less than what you currently owe them. Traditionally, credit card debt consolidation means acquiring one loan to pay off all of your other credit card debt. This is done for two reasons. First, this new loan will usually have an interest rate that is much lower than the interest rates on your existing credit card accounts. Secondly, once you consolidate your credit card debt, you only make one payment per month to your new lender, rather than multiple payments to a variety of different credit card issuers.

    • since you dont make alot of money, the thing you will have to do is try to find ways to save as much of it as you can.Do you eat lunch AT work? If so maybe you can take your lunch a couple of days turn your heat/airconditioning down or off while you are at work for 8 or so hours per day.do you have tnighs in your house that you dont use? maybe you can sell them on ebayYou might qualify for the earned income credit when you file your tax return, maybe you can devote that ENTIRE amount to repaying you debt.Not sure what you took up in school but there are certain programs that will forgive your loans if you agree towork with them peace corps, certain teaching positions etcmaybe you can go back to your school and talk with your guidance counselors regarding this .When you go to the store to purchase groceries, GO with a list.Do you have a friend that you could split a membership with to one of those discount clubs if so you can buy toliet paper and other supplies in bulk and for even more savings you can split the cost of same with your friend.wash full loads of clothing only.I am sure you will be able to think of other tnighs you can doBest of luck to you

      • Yes, I pack my lunch on most days and the closest discount club is about a 60 mile round trip and most of the time I don’t use much besides basic Personal Hygiene products and just food when I go shopping for groceries.

      • The interest from a pay day loan is atocoirus. Definitely a last resort. For an amount that small, I would try a close friend or a relative. And then pay it back the very first thing. Asking a new employer about an advance is probably going to raise a bunch of warning flags on their part unless the new employer is related to you (as in your uncle or aunt, etc.).Perhaps your mother who’s tardy paying your credit cards on time could help out as well. You could also try a site like but I’m not sure if you’re below their minimum amount. What’s you’re going to want to do when you start your new job is to set aside money for times like this in your future.

      • The interest from a pay day loan is atucrioos. Definitely a last resort. For an amount that small, I would try a close friend or a relative. And then pay it back the very first thing. Asking a new employer about an advance is probably going to raise a bunch of warning flags on their part unless the new employer is related to you (as in your uncle or aunt, etc.).Perhaps your mother who’s tardy paying your credit cards on time could help out as well. You could also try a site like but I’m not sure if you’re below their minimum amount. What’s you’re going to want to do when you start your new job is to set aside money for times like this in your future.

      • BAD IDEA. Taking on your brothers debt is not somnehitg you should do. It can ruin your whole relationship with him if he ends up not paying, not to mention your credit. Also, 0% credit cards are tricky. If you do not pay off the balance in the time the 0% is allowed, you are charged interest on the WHOLE amount, no matter how much you have paid off on it. Stay away from it no matter how much you believe in your brother and his ability to pay you back.

      • The only way to pay them off faster is spimly to pay more. Pay as much as you can against your highest-rate card, get that gone, then do the same to the next one, etc If you really took a step back at how you spend your money now, most people can easily find another $50-200 per month to pay down debts. This means skipping the starbucks, the lunches out, etc Find some way to not spend $3-5 every day that you otherwise seem to do. At the end of the month, you’ll have another $100-150 to put towards a card.

    • It depends on where you live and what you need it for. do you just have bad erdcit or outstanding loans?If you are in dire need to make your house paymentThe salvation army will pay a one time(that means lifetime) emergency house payment.If you are a member of a church and are a widow or a single parent your church( if it is large enough) will pay from a benevolent fund and you don’t have to pay that back either.If you need something repaired your church elders will find someone in the congregation to help you with that as well.

    • Do not use debt consolidators. They are dagbtirs and it will appear on your credit report anyway. You will land up paying them to do something you can do yourself. The money you pay them could be better used to pay down your debt.First of all you have to get organized. You have to have a good game plan to attack your debt. More on that in a minute. You need to stop using credit cards and all consumer debt. You can not get out of the debt hole if you keep digging it deeper by using credit cards every month. Stop using them now and cut them up. Use cash or debit for everything from now on. If you can’t pay cash, you can’t afford it. Period.Please read a bood called the Total Money Makeover by Dave Ramsey. My wife and I read it 6 months ago and, WOW, were we stupid with our money. This book will help shed light on the real consequences of using consumer debt and what it does to your personal finances. It will show you how to get organized, set up a budget, set up emergency funds, pay off debt, save for kids college, invest and many other things. We thought this was strange at first, but let me tell you is is really great. We have made a 5 figure change in our debt load in that short amount of time by getting organized and attacking the debt. The thing is to do a budget and stick to it this month and every month. The budget shows where your money goes and where it is leaking out of your wallet/purse. Once you get mad enough at yourself and your debt situation, you will be able to make the change in attitude real ease. You will stop losing money buying useless crap you do not need. You need food, gas, shelter, and the like. You do not need to eat at a restaurant, go to the bar, buy another DVD, video game, shoes, clothes, etc. Once you start saying no to yourself, you can really start winning and getting out of debt. Just this morning I finished my spending plan for the month of May. May is in the books and we paid off another big old wad of debt. It is cool to see the monthly balances coming down quick. The key is to get responsible and become an adult. Time to grow up and do smart things with the cash. You must be honest with yourself and look in the mirror. This biggest cause of most peoples financial troubles are right in the mirror. Ours was.Read the book and get on a debt reduction plan. This is a good plan. Nothing great was ever built without a good plan. This is the most important thing you can do in your entire life. Get yourself set up financially for a solid future.My wife and I can not talk highly enough about this plan. I hope it works for you as well as it has for us.Forget the debt CON solidators or any of these guys. You are smart enough to do this yourself. It takes discipline and character. It takes growing up and acting responsibly. It takes saying no. It takes using cash. It takes a budget. It takes not going out to bars/ restaurants/ movies/ vacations. etc.You won’t get your budget right the first month. Nobody does. Keep at it. Once you get good at it, you will see your balances dropping like a rock. You only have 11k in debt. You can work through it.Good LuckI wish you all the best

    • I had to get out of the trap by paying slolwy, I did not have much choice in the matter. Another option, if you go throught the loans section in the phone book, some of them will give you a very small loan (they will require Serial Numbers from anything you own though)then you can start to rebuild your credit that way.

    • Absolutely don’t borrow money to pay on booerwrd money. You are creating a foundation of disaster. Pay for you necessities first food, shelter, and utilities and attack the debt with the lowest balance. If you can’t pay minimum payments on everything, call the ones you can’t pay and tell them you can’t pay. If you do happen to get a loan probably at a ridiculous rate if you have bad credit cut up all your credit cards so you won’t dig a new whole. It happens very often when people get loans to pay off other debts. Then you have all your old debts back plus a new loan. Try to sell stuff, work overtime, get a second job, whatever. Earn more money of your own.

  1. Student loans are available to utdsents through the Department of Education regardless of your credit history or credit rating. All you need to do is fill out a FAFSA (Free Application for Student Aid). This information gets sent to the school of your choosing and is set up through your financial aid office at school. Your eligible loan amounts would be based on your current student year and degree being pursued.You can get more information by going to- www. fafsa. ed. govGood luck to you as you pursue your educational goals.

    • You certainly could apply for a cash adnvace. The charges to you aren’t good, if you need $150 it will cost you around $180.As long as you don’t plan to use them all the time, cause they are good, but only in emergencies.You can find a few good companies at

    • Yes, you can be sued if you don’t pay them. If they obtain a jmuedgnt, they can garnish your wages and seize money from your checking account, if that doesn’t work, in most instances they can put a lien against any real property. If you do nothing, charged off accounts will drop off of your credit report 7 years after the fact, but .In most states the statute of limitations is much longer. For example, in the state of Ohio, the statute of limitations is 15 years. So You forget about it, the debt has fallen off of your credit report, then 14 years later, you can get sued.

    • The company can keep canigrhg fees and interest, which adds up really fast. You can end up paying thousands more than the original balance. Also, they can sue you or send the bill to collections, which looks AWFUL on a credit report. You won’t be able to get a loan or an apartment with bad credit. My advice is to get a debt consolidator (if you qualify) to lower or stop the interest and put you on a payment plan you can afford.

    • Sign up for a card that has 0% on balance tfesnrars for a year. Transfer as much as you can to the new card and cut it up (any purchases you make will accrue interest until the transfered balances are paid).I SWEAR by this. I transfered 3 high interest cards to Washington Mutual almost a year ago. I have $300 left to pay by May. I took my time to pay it off sometimes 10%, sometimes the minimum. NO FINANCE CHARGES!

    • You can’t, the credit card copmany determines which part of the debt gets paid off first, and guess what, they always choose the low interest portion.

    • Depending on other payments and abitily to pay, you may be able to get a bank debt consolidation loan. A lot depends on your credit score, your history with the bank, and your abitily to convince the loan officer that you will not get right back into credit card debt. Good luck.

  2. Your D/C ratio remains the same. They will look at the egcionsr’s separately. Do everyone a favor and don’t use a egcionsr. If you default on the debt, it’s on them. Given your massive ratio, getting another loan is a bad idea anyway, as evidenced by everyone not giving you one.

  3. Good question and you are the only one who can anewsr it. The reasonable amount of debt to assume to attend college depends on your plans for repayment of that debt. For example, if you plan to work in the peace corp for years after you graduate, you probably wouldn’t like to have to be making loan repayments. However, if you know that your grandparents have left a trust for you and you have full access to those funds once you turn 25, then you might be willing to borrow as much as the trust is worth. FYI the average student debt upon graduation is running around $20,000 for a 4 year degree. Your question asks about interest if you mean what’s a reasonable interest rate, you should have to pay much higher than 8% as a student. As an aside, there are a couple of professions which qualify for college debt reduction, eg if you are a teacher in certain inner city schools.

  4. Unluckily, the two are mutually elciusxve. People with low credit scores have been shown (by their history) to be less than ideal credit risks. Because they default at a higher rate, banks and other lending institutions place these borrowers in a risk class with higher interest rates to make up for the higher rate of default. As credit risk lowers for these people, they will eventually fall out of the higher risk classes and move into lower risk (and lower interest rate) classes.

  5. Stay away from any debt consolidation ncpmaoy that promises to cut your debt and payments in half through debt settlement .This is a risky tactic of deliberately ceasing all payments to creditors and forcing your accounts into default to attempt settlements. You pay a monthly fee to a debt consolidator .this entire fee goes towards building a settlement account and to the consolidator’s fees to “settle” your accounts in the future. Your credit card companies will deliberately not be paid so that all the accounts will default/charge-off so that they can attempt settlements at around 50%. If you are current on your accounts, this process will ruin your credit rating for sure. Debt settlement is like a roll off the dice with your finances You can never predict how your creditors will respond to the deliberate defaulting of your accounts they might settle at 50% or they might serve you a summons, take you to court and if they win, you could be looking at wage garnishment.Many people who sign up with “debt consolidation” firms incorrectly assume that they have the power to force your creditors to accept settlements they don’t. Your creditors have the right to refuse settlements and take you to court. Note: These places will not work with student loans.

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