My journey into deep debt
Does anyone know a guy, who knows a guy, to change your identity because falling into debt is incredibly easy to do, but clawing your way back out is one of the most stressful experiences I have ever had.
I settled down around the age of 25. I bought a house, married a very tolerant woman, 2.5 kids, and a white picket fence. I had the “American Dream.”
I had bought my house at the very beginning of the housing bubble pop, near the end of 2007. I saw that the house prices were dropping and believed in the narrative that they would soon recover. I thought I was being smart because I was buying the house for less than it was two years ago. I received a loan for 140,000$ and dove in head first. Of course, the market did not recover. (still isn’t) As a matter of fact, it kept dropping and it was hard to keep everything afloat, but I was able to. The house is currently worth 539,000$.
My wife then needed to trade in her car. This increased the monthly payments and the principle quite a bit. When you add the house payment, car payment, basic services and random child expenses I was paying well over 3000$ a month.
Then I lost my job due to the economy and decided to try to work with the bank and modify my loan. It took 6 months and by the time they lowered my payment from 1,100$ a month to 650$, I was 4 months behind. It was about then we had to stop paying the credit cards to have cash to go food shopping and pay the basic bills.
I was getting more collection calls than I could count. I tried communicating my situation to the credit card companies, Mortgage Company, and the car loan company to no avail. I tried looking into bankruptcy, but they required a decent sum of money to even start the process.
After you add the principle balances, interest rates, late fees, and other associated charges I am currently 410,000$ in debt and growing. The house is in foreclosure. The car has been repossessed. Credit cards have been transferred to collection agencies. My name has been financially disgraced. I will be lucky to ever own a home again. The bus has become my normal mode of transportation and cash is king.
I am now looking for my very own “Ed the Disappear-er.” (Breaking Bad fans know what I’m talking about.) Seriously though, it would be easier if I just started anew. Change my name, get a new Social Security, maybe even shave my head and wear a fedora. It would be better than the financial leper that I am now.