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No Retirement, No Savings, Drowning in Debt. – Randy

“Dear Steve,

Self employed – earned about $80K in 2010 (up from 2009); 58 years old.
$10K in savings; no retirement plan other than to work ’till the end.
Home owner – mortgage etc. about $2K/mo; no equity, but not underwater either – just about even.
Unsecured debt is about $50K.
Not behind yet in anything, but between self-employment taxes and paying debt, I just can’t seem to reduce the debt.
If it weren’t for the debt, I could likely pay taxes comfortably and maybe even save a little.
Considering bankruptcy (California)

Can you help?
Should I file for bankruptcy?
Any reputable contacts in Contra Costa county Calif.?


Dear Randy,

The focus at this point needs to turn away from servicing your debt to servicing your future. You are 58 with no retirement savings. That’s not a good prospect.

I think you should read my guide, The Honest and Unvarnished Truth About How to Get Out of Debt.

People can lay all sorts of guilt on you about you created the debt, you need to repay it, blah, blah, blah. Actually the points raised are true and factual but what is also factual is you are only rolling towards your non-income producing years, you have nothing saved and without taking drastic action you will not be able to protect your future. Instead you’ll be trying to repair your past and leaving yourself more open to a disaster when you can least deal with it.

Let’s say you entered into a five year repayment plan and paid back your debt. Now you’d be 63 and starting from scratch. How does that help you? But hey, if that’s the path you want to follow then look at a credit counseling solution. Personally, in this situation, I would not be a fan of that approach.

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 post your responses and follow-up messages to me on this in the comments section below.

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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.

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