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Home > Ask The Get Out of Debt Experts > My Husband is Active Duty Military and I Can’t Make Ends Meet. – Carrie

My Husband is Active Duty Military and I Can’t Make Ends Meet. – Carrie

“Dear Steve,

My family and I are sinking deeper and deeper everyday. We have done alot of things right ,but for everything we do right it seems we do 2 wrong. A normal 1 of the month looks like this:

First of the month 1900
Ssi 235
Ssi 188
Clothing allowance 300
Total 2623

House 862
Insurance 153
Power 250
Gas 100
Net 90
Carmel 100
HOA 45
Budo 40
Water 30
Pest 60
Phone 200
Golds 100
Cue 30
Direct tv 160
Total 2220

and that is only the first.

Our 15 has credit cards topped at 15000, line of credit 3000, ADT 50 and a nice car payment of 340.

Most of are extras are still on contract so we can’t get out. We payed the extra to switch are phones to a much lower plan but won’t feel that relief for another month. Direct tv also cut but only by 40. We pay the credit card bills but have to take the money right back out to pay the bills!!

We are trying to sell the car so we don’t have a car payment but we live in vegas so no one is willing to pay what it is worth. We thought about trading the car in but are to scared that trading it in to lower the payments we will only hurt ourselves buy going for a cheaper vehicle but still adding a few extra thousand to that car.

We are a family of 5. We have 3 large boys who can eat there weight in food and my husband is active duty. We live 40 minutes from the base so gas hurts us as well. husband has a cheap vehicle that is good on gas but the durango is killing us at every turn. Gas costs us 100 a week.

We are completely lost! We recognize we are in trouble but now we are so deep we are not sure to start. Please is there anything other then bankruptcy in are future??

Carrie”

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The Answer

Dear Carrie,

It looks like things are very tight and the least little bit that comes up will sink you. I suspect you are also unable to save and have no emergency fund either.

Small changes are good but they probably won’t add up to a major change or probably give you enough breathing room for a significant difference.

We are going to have to make some bigger changes to get your life to fit within your income.

Since the vehicle is costing you $100 a week or $400 a month, it might not be enough just to sell it, Even if you purchased a smaller vehicle it is unlikely you are going to cut your fuel bill in half. You might have to consider more drastic action and relocate closer to the base to reduce the commute time and energy costs.

I’d also take a look at getting into couponing to save big bucks on your food bill. We’ve got a number of articles on couponing tips in our Moving Forward section of the site. You might want to join our online coupon group and we will help you get going to save lots on groceries.

If you absolutely want to stay where you are at, the first order of business is to see if it is even possible. You’ll have to cut the gym, lose the DirecTV, and not get by putting more expenses on credit cards. Oh yes, you’ll need to save money at the same time.

While cutting those expenses might allow you to get the income and expenses to get a bit closer, it will also leave you with a life that many would face with dread.

So what’s the goal, to make it within your income with a life of deprivation or to face your debt, make tough choices, and move forward even if that means bankruptcy?

I can get you headed where you want to go once we decide where it is you are heading.

Big Hug!

My Husband is Active Duty Military and I Cant Make Ends Meet.   Carrie
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My Husband is Active Duty Military and I Can't Make Ends Meet. - Carrie by

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About Steve Rhode

Steve Rhode
Steve Rhode is the Get Out of Debt Guy and has been helping good people with bad debt problems since 1994. You can learn more about Steve, here.
  • Steve Rhode

    The bigger issue is that even without the $15,000 in credit card debt you are still not able to makes ends meet and save with your current situation. The budget you gave me didn’t include all the transportation expenses.

    What changes will you make that will allow you to live within your income and save $500 a month to protect you and your family?

    If there are insufficient adjustment easy at hand you are going to have to look at a modified approach.

    Money troubles are resolved by increasing income or lowering expenses.

    Are you able to increase income? If not then we need to concentrate on lowering expenses. A bankruptcy would be a legal way to discharge some of that debt but that eliminates the credit card debt and car payment.

    A replacement car after bankruptcy is most likely going to be more expensive. You might be able to find a more fuel efficient smaller vehicle so you can save money there.

    With $15,000 of credit card debt a bankruptcy would reduce your debt payments by about $350 a month. Is that enough room to make ends meet without credit and save?

  • carrie

    We are not able to move. We bought the house in 09. We received the  tax credit and payed off credit cards. The unfortunate thing about where we live is you have to live far from the base to keep your family safe and have your children in a good school. The vehicle we pay on cost 400 a month with the payment and insurance. Another 100 a week in gas. We are planning on using tax returns to pay down bills but are still lost on what to do about now.

  • carrie

    We are not able to move. We bought the house in 09. We received the  tax credit and payed off credit cards. The unfortunate thing about where we live is you have to live far from the base to keep your family safe and have your children in a good school. The vehicle we pay on cost 400 a month with the payment and insurance. Another 100 a week in gas. We are planning on using tax returns to pay down bills but are still lost on what to do about now.

    • http://GetOutOfDebt.org Steve Rhode

      The bigger issue is that even without the $15,000 in credit card debt you are still not able to makes ends meet and save with your current situation. The budget you gave me didn’t include all the transportation expenses.

      What changes will you make that will allow you to live within your income and save $500 a month to protect you and your family?

      If there are insufficient adjustment easy at hand you are going to have to look at a modified approach.

      Money troubles are resolved by increasing income or lowering expenses.

      Are you able to increase income? If not then we need to concentrate on lowering expenses. A bankruptcy would be a legal way to discharge some of that debt but that eliminates the credit card debt and car payment.

      A replacement car after bankruptcy is most likely going to be more expensive. You might be able to find a more fuel efficient smaller vehicle so you can save money there.

      With $15,000 of credit card debt a bankruptcy would reduce your debt payments by about $350 a month. Is that enough room to make ends meet without credit and save?

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