Wednesday, April 30, 2008 back rewards

We've been saying it for years. We do not borrow money. Unless of course something really important, really cool, or really necessary came up. We've been saying it, but we didn't really, really mean it. This is the day that we change.

A couple of weeks ago we got a notice from our insurance agency that everything on the outside of our house stunk and we needed to do repairs to our roof, foundation, siding, brick work, and facia boards. Also, our trees were too big, (wonder what they are doing about our neighbors trees?) This news came moments after my husband and I decided that it was indeed time to hire an attorney to adopt our kids, and that credit would be ok, this time.

When you start adding it all up, it becomes a lot. We don't borrow money, but we're about to borrow a lot, because it is urgent. We had a little more than a month to make all of these repairs. It' s urgent, but what was more important? Do we change our conviction that we do not want to be slave to a lender? Or, do we let other people dictate through their urgency how we will live our lives? Urgency or conviction?

But how can we really justify the further use of the credit card? We can use debit, we've been choosing not to. Convenience or conviction?

So, there we sat with a $20,000 problem, and we didn't have the money in the bank. We don't borrow money. This seems like a problem. Of course, as with many problems, we look at what we think is the problem, only to find out later that the other side saw it differently. So, we found out exactly what the problem was, and exactly how to fix it.

Regarding the kids, they aren't going anywhere, important not urgent. Regarding the roof, important not urgent. Regarding the trees, urgent and important. So, in the end our $20,000 urgent problem turned out to be less than $1,000. We had that, without borrowing money. The rest of the important matters can be taken care of over time, once we've saved.

All of this is well and good, but there is more. I had to call the mortgage company and explain the insurance situation and find out if we were going to have insurance, if the mortgage company had paid the insurance who was dropping us, they had, and how to pay for the new insurance. Well, got to talking with someone who asked me if I wanted to refinance? We were in great standing with them, our credit scores were good (as high as they'll be from now on, because we don't borrow money), and we could save 1% with no closing costs. So, we're refinancing to a 15 fixed, down from the 24 years remaining on our current loan. It will raise our payment $140/month, but over the life of the loan save us $67,000.00 and nine years of a mortgage payment.

So, we are now vowing to never use credit again. Yikes, what if? I think God has it covered, two weeks ago we had a $20,000 problem. Today, we saved $67,000.00 in finance charges and 9 years of house payments. That's more cash back than I'll ever get from any credit card.

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Cast of Characters

  • BOB - Born of the body children
  • BOTH - Born of the heart children
  • Roran aka Big Girl - 18 year old BOB daughter - recently booted from the nest
  • Big Boy - 15 year old BOB son
  • Radical - 9 year old BOB son who fyi is not RAD
  • Felpsy aka lil middle - 4 year old BOTH boy who is RAD and is the cumin in our soup
  • Booger - 4 year old BOTH boy, sib to Felpsy, Twin to....
  • Princess - 4 year old BOTH girl. Diva,