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Wednesday, August 15, 2018
October 1 Debt Check In

We’ve made it all the way to the beginning of October together. There’s not that much time until the end of the year, so if we are to make all of our financial goals for the end of the year we really have to get moving.

I haven’t accomplished nearly as much in September as I hoped that I would. There was a massive flood in the area of my rental home which delayed the whole process of finding a new tenant. But, I have good news! A new tenant was to sign a lease with the management company on Friday, September 30, so we’re in business! While he wanted to have a two year lease, I opted for a one year lease with a renewal option. I want to make sure that the new renter and I will be perfectly compatible before committing myself to a lease of that length. I do want a long-term renter though.

One of the positive things about waiting this long to rent the home is that rents actually went up. Since the area flooded and my house was on a hill out of the flood zone, there was a lot of interest in my property. Well, that and the fact that there are simply less houses to be had at this time of the year and so many people are now looking for housing. It’s all about supply and demand. I was effectively able to tack on an increase of just about 10% more than my tenant from hell was paying. Considering that I have to pay the management company 10% of the collected rents, this worked out well. I will end up taking home only $7.50 less per month than when the previous tenant rented the location and I didn’t have a management company. I am going to have to pay them one full month’s rent for finding a tenant, vetting said tenant, arranging a city inspection of the property for an official occupancy report, and then having the lease signed.  I hope that it’s worth it.

Alright then, on to the money portion of this post.  Here we go with the debts again.

October debt
October debt

My debt went up from last month…again.  This isn’t a good trend and it’s concerning me more than I’ll probably say here.  The why?  Murphy’s Law.  I had a little emergency fund, but everything seems to pop up all at once.

  • When I brought my car into the dealership in late August, a $250 job turned into $1,500 and about 5 days with a rental car.  The rental car fees showed up on the credit card this month.
  • Tolls went from about $7.50 each way to $12 each way.  That one sucked big time.
  • Expenses related to the Financial Blogger Conference that I just arrived home from showed up this month and more will pop up next month.
  • Lots of gas from going back and forth to the rental property.  That stops this month, thank God.
  • Third month of no income from the rental property.

That was pretty much everything that caused the reversal of fortune.  Again, no excuses just looking at the why.  But if we look even further you can see that I could probably have avoided much of the hassle with a larger emergency fund.  The problem is that I’ve had to invest so much money into fixing the rental property that I basically have no emergency fund let.  That’s a major problem that I have to remedy.   Either way, I have to have something saved for when Mr. Murphy tosses the next problem at my head.

Alright, you want to look at how much I made online in September.

Blogging Income

Google: $120.17
Sponsored Tweets: $0.17
Commission Junction: $107.69
Private Ads: $825.50
Commissions: $191.90
Total: $1,245.43

I realized I’ve been making a grave mistake.  I’ve been listing the gross amount of my blogging income when I should list the net amount.  PayPal takes a good amount of money out of my income and blog ad commissions also eat up another percentage.   This time I’ve listed the net amount.

Do you see a problem here?  I made an extra $1,200+ and yet my debt went up.  What went wrong?

There are two things happening here.  I have not been paid for some of these things.  Actually, I haven’t been paid for anything except the private ads.  Still, I should be left with $825.50 that I should have either put towards the emergency fund or the debt.  I received pretty much all of that money on the Thursday night before I left to go to the conference on September 30.  All of the liquid income then, was received on the very last day of the month.

Interestingly, I no longer have that much available to me to push towards the emergency fund or to the debt.  By the time I got back home on Sunday, October 2, my BF managed to spend $825.50 down to $527.49.  Yeap, he spent almost $300 before I even got to look at the account.

Now, I’m not a miser, by far.  I’m definitely cheap, but I’m not stingy.  I also believe that when you’re in a committed relationship, any earned income jointly belongs to the couple.  The problem that I have is that I specifically told him that I would need to use that money to offset the costs of attending the conference.  Instead of taking my need to pay those NEW bills in full into consideration, he went on a spending spree, and he wasted money on stupid things. Let me list a few of them for you:

  1. $12.56 on cigarettes.  I’m against smoking and he knows it.
  2. $42.73 on McDonald’s over two days.  I have no words.
  3. $43.00 on two trips for $20 each to the ATM.  It cost almost 10% in fees to withdraw $40!
  4. $74.67 at the Vitamin Shop.  I don’t even know what he got.

And so it went on.  Lots of small purchases that he would not have made had I been home.  I find it to be dishonest and frankly, I’m ticked off. When I mentioned it to him as I was writing this post, be basically brushed it off with a “I won’t spend your money again.” That was not the point. I had told him that I needed the money, but instead, buying McDonald’s, the Vitamin Shop, ATM fees, informercial crap and other things was more important to him.  This is why I urge you to make sure that you and your spouse or significant other are on the same page financially and in maturity.  Not only are we not on the same page, we’re not reading the same book and it’s not in the same language. That’s a problem that needs to be fixed sooner than later.  It doesn’t have to be “my” way.  It just needs to be a medium and make it “our” way.  Remember my advice and talk about this with the person that you are dating much sooner than later.

Okay folks.  That brings us to the end of this post.  I’d like to thank you for reading through to the end.  How did you do on getting rid of your debt last month?  Are you trending downward?

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This messy little blog was all my doing. I started this blog four years ago as a way of keeping myself accountable to my own debt reduction plans. Now I'm using this blog to help others get out of debt as well. Consider subscribing to get more delicious posts like this at least twice per week.

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Obsessive Compulsive Daniela October 3, 2011 at 11:54 am

Wow, can’t believe your BF spent all that money on basically crap. I can’t remember the specific details of your financial arrangement with him, but that is definitely not cool. Add the fact that he refused to talk about the issue, and I would be pretty ticked off. Let us know how you resolve the issue!

Andy Hough October 3, 2011 at 3:18 pm

I don’t think I could eat $43 of Mcd’s in two days.

I heard you say at FINCON that you receive $25 per tweet. Is that from a different company than Sponsored Tweets?

    Sandy October 3, 2011 at 4:42 pm

    It isn’t different. I didn’t tweet anything last month. Those were just passive commissions from others. I’m putting an update to the Sponsored Tweets this up this week for everyone at FINCON along with a screen shot. 😉

Vanessa October 3, 2011 at 4:15 pm

I agree with the above comment! Your BF’s attitude was totally rude — you have every right to be ticked off.

42$ on McDonald’s… Unbelievable!

Congrats on the new tenant by the way!

Everyday Tips October 3, 2011 at 4:35 pm

Hey, you did a great job gaining income. Your debt might have gone up for one month, but if you keep earning, it is going to go down real soon. (One thing you can do though is close your purse to the boyfriend. I appreciate your honesty though, which is part of why your site is great.)

Focus on the positives (income), learn from the negatives (unnecessary spending) and you will have a totally different post next month!

Ninja October 3, 2011 at 4:44 pm

Kill it girl. $1,200 aint shabby at all.

Amanda L Grossman October 3, 2011 at 5:08 pm

Great job on the blogging income! It was nice to (briefly) meet you at FINCON–what a great conference:).

    Sandy October 3, 2011 at 9:07 pm

    You’re so young looking! I wish I could bottle you up and sell you. 🙂

Jessica, The Debt Princess October 3, 2011 at 8:46 pm

I don’t think we got the chance to meet during FinCon but I really enjoyed the questions you asked during the sessions.

I also put my debt on my blog, ok well I use to, then I didn’t, and now I am again. It’s very impowering. It also helps us open our eyes to what may be problem areas in our lives.

I don’t know anything about you beyond this post but I am very worried for your relationship. Couples really need to be on the same page with money. I hope you two can find a way to be so. As someone who was once in a relationship like this, it can’t survive if you aren’t. It sounds to me, like you know in your heart where things are going. I wish you luck.

    Sandy October 3, 2011 at 9:05 pm

    I saw you with the tiara on the first day! Don’t worry we will have more opportunities to meet. Put the debt on your blog if you’re comfortable with it.

    We’re more than 15 years in. It still doesn’t make thing easy.

Financial Samurai October 3, 2011 at 10:56 pm

Ummm, there is NO WAY IN HELL I could eat 40 double cheeseburgers in 2 days! Is he a big boy?

$1,200/month in blog income is great!

Can you create a separate Sandy Only blog income account so he doesn’t have access? this seems to be a recurring theme of him spending your money.

Financial Samurai October 3, 2011 at 10:57 pm

BTW Sandy, am I blind? I can’t find the Tweet button.

    Sandy October 3, 2011 at 11:07 pm

    Dammit, my Twitter button disappeared. I’m having caching problems. Lots of traffic today.

Money Reasons October 3, 2011 at 11:35 pm

Money and relationships is always tough…

My wife and I have separate checking accounts, but I pay all the bills since she’s almost a SAHM (she use to be one but now works 8 to 10 hours a week as a bookkeeper since both of our kids are in school).

Sounds like you have a great tenant now!

First Gen American October 4, 2011 at 7:22 am

Gotta love supply and demand. It’s great that you got your pick of the litter for tenants. That’ll make a huge difference I’m sure.

Alice @ EarningMyTwoCents October 4, 2011 at 9:07 am

Thanks for this post. You have inspired me to put all my debts in a spreadsheet so I can see them all and tackle them without them seeming so looming and opaque.

Also, thanks for sharing about your relationship financial fights. My husband and I are also trying to get on the same page as I try to point out that Chipotle is not an ok every day expense when we have a fridge full of food he can just bring for lunch! He’s getting better though 🙂 Thanks for being real and sharing your struggles and trimphs.

Little House October 4, 2011 at 9:54 am

The blogging income is great. Your BH spending quite a bit of that money, not so great.

Maybe you and your BH need separate accounts. If he can’t get on the same page as you, make him read his own book. At least that would free up some money and allow you to pay down your debt.

Good luck!

Evan October 4, 2011 at 2:58 pm

I am not the pinnacle of health but wow Between Cigs and 40 dollars worth of McDonalds in 2 days he isn’t going to be around that long! Jesus.

Where is the mortgage on the rental?

retirebyforty October 4, 2011 at 3:12 pm

It will get better once you start collecting rents. As a landlord, I hate vacancy too.
BF is not helping…

Christa October 4, 2011 at 5:12 pm

I think you’re doing great — the chart really shows how you’ve evened out after your last loan.

I would also be pissed at the BF for blowing $300 in 2 days. Ugh, Mickey-D’s alone… Hope you can whip him into shape (seriously, find a whip).

Pam McCormick October 5, 2011 at 12:05 pm

I think you know you have WAY bigger problems than just the BF “eating Mickey D’s” and spending money that you had previously dicussed.15 years in, 30 years in or more(myself going on 35)it is what it is….Call it something else,kill it with kindness,hide it under the bed.Find the strength, take a line from Nike JUST DO IT.You teach people how to treat you! Best Wishes

Ashley @ Money Talks October 7, 2011 at 10:29 am

I got a property managment company and I don’t regret it at all. It’s so nice to know that someone else is keeping track of things. It takes a little longer to get the rent since they clear it through their own accounts before sending it over, but that’s not a big deal.

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