My Business Failed, I’m Selling Everything on eBay, I’m Maxed Out and Scared. – Lori

“Dear Steve,

I had a small store for about 25 years, and a much larger corporate owned store selling the same items opened up 2 blocks away. I hung in as long as I could, but eventually closed up, getting nothing for it, and starting my credit card debt at $12,000. I was almost 50 at the time, and having been in retail all my life, I really had no marketable skills, except to be a min. wage cashier. After being my own boss for so long, I just couldn’t do it, and after being in retail for over 30 years, I just didn’t want to do it! Enough is enough. So, I looked into work at home jobs, but couldn’t find anything legit that anyone could actually survive doing. I started selling on Ebay, inventory from my defunct store plus having been a collector for many years, some of my personal possessions went on the auction block. Whenever I couldn’t make ends meet the credit cards came out.

It has been 5 years now and my credit card debt is up to $65,000. I can not physically go out and work, so I need to stick with at home and Ebay. My uncle paid off my mortage when I was going under, so I own my house, on paper, outright. I have been borrowing from friends and family all year, and see no way to pay my maxed out cards any longer, not even the minimum payments. I should be able to pay half of the minimums, but it will still be tight. What is my best option? I do not have a job on the books, and I don’t want to lose my house. Today was the first time I did not pay my minimum on 1 of the cards. I need oil or I will soon be freezing. I want to do the right thing, but I’m pretty desperate at this point. I hope you can help, please!


Dear Lori,

I can only imagine how scared you are at this point. The situation seems to feel desperate and it seemingly is.

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While much of what I’m about to share might feel like unfortunate news, the bright spot is that by the end, you will have found a more sustainable life and no longer need to live in fear.

Ultimately what we have hear is a situation where the item out of balance in this equation is income.


Your income has been deficient for a long time and you’ve made up the gap using the credit cards and the generosity of family and friends. However, what the access to both of those resources did was simply allow you to dig a deeper hole that is going to be tough to get out of.

Before we even start to fuss about how to deal with the past debt, I need for you to ask yourself how you can liv within your current income without support from others? Is it even possible?

It’s probably time for you to strongly look at government benefit programs at Benefits.gov.

You should also contact your state or local division of welfare assistance to find out what local benefits might also be available.

The good news is that there are helpful programs out there that can assist in lowering your expenses. These programs can provide you with heating assistance, food help, and other benefits. The bad thing is that applying for these programs is time consuming and often a real pain in the ass.

Next, depending on the state you live in your home may not be protected from creditors. I need for you to click here to find a local bankruptcy attorney and go talk to them, for free, about your situation and the house.

It might be that it may make more sense to sell the house and settle the debt or for you to remain in the house and let creditors place liens against it. After you apply for benefits and talk to the bankruptcy attorney I want you to come back and post an update in the comments section.

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You can click here to find a local bankruptcy attorney and if you’d like a second opinion about your situation or a personal consultation by another debt coach, please feel free to contact Damon Day.

Please update me on your progress by

You are not alone. I'm here to help. There is no need to suffer in silence. We can get through this. Tomorrow can be better than today. Don't give up.

Do you have a question you'd like to ask me for free? Go ahead and click here.
Damon Day - Pro Debt Coach

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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.
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