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Month 21

May 6th, 2011 at 11:11 pm

I can't believe it's been almost two years. It's been a while since I updated things. I've been busy with the kids, especially our newest addition. Bryce was born in November of 2010. He is just over six months old, weighing almost 18 pounds now and 26.5 inches long. He is a healthy happy baby. The girls all love being little mommies to them. I haven't been working since September of last year so things have slowed down a bit on our debt snowball. Here is where things stand:

Total Outstanding Debt: $62,451

Total Savings, Including retirement: $64, 507

We went a little off track when the baby was born. In March of this year we recommitted ourselves to becoming debt free. We haven't really been tracking things very well. I have started us back on the envelopes system, using mvelopes.com.

We are getting ready to PCS this summer to our next duty station. We will only be there for 8 months then moving again. It's going to be a busy summer.

The big debate in the house right now financially is what to do with a car my husband inherited from his father when he passed away in February last year. It's a nice car, only a few years old but not practical for us. It's a 2007 Mustang Convertible. My husband has a Highlander so with this car it makes three. We took it up to Carmax yesterday and they said they would buy it for $19,950. The only issue is the sentimental side of it. My husband mentioned to his mom that he was going to sell the car and now she want's to buy it back from us for $10,000. She doesn't really have the money to buy it and she hasn't been able to drive for 11 years due to medication she is on and problems she has with her back and legs so it would be sitting in her garage. I know she wants to have it because it reminds her of her husband but it doesn't seem right selling her the car back. She is on quite a bit of medication on a daily basis and isn't always lucid.

If we keep the car, we will have to ship it do our next duty station which will cost us around $1,000 and then when we move again in 8 months, we'll have to ship it again. I would like to sell it and pay off our van or put half of it towards our debt and half into savings. We would like to purchase a home in a year from now so there seems to be more of an urgency to pay things off and save. It would be great not to have a car payment.

It's a hard decision and has brought a lot of stress into our house. Any thoughts or suggestions would be appreciated.

9 Responses to “Month 21”

  1. MonkeyMama Says:

    I think it makes absolutely no sense to keep the car (or sell it to his mom).

    How old is his mom? Will she know if you sell it? I generally don't advocate lying or deceit, but in this case, the nice thing to do would be to say you decided to keep it. Assuming she would never know otherwise. If it comes up down the road you can just say you decided to sell it. But I think I recommend deflecting, just because feelings are fresh, etc. Obviously it would make no sense for her to buy it, and as you said, and who knows how logical she is being, anyway.

    Honesty is certainly the best policy, but I think it's hard to reason with someone in a state like that. Well, I think it is impossible.

    As far as many misgivings on your and your husband's part? Sell the car. Being able to sell it is an extraordinary gift and the cash will bring you properity. Having to keep and ship a car is kind of the opposite. - will be costly. IT's just a car.

    Other than that - is there anyone else in the family who can use it? Who can afford it? Would be my only other recommendation. Might be worth selling for $15k-ish if someone can use it?

  2. WISEWOMAN Says:

    You should sell it. Otherwise, it will become a burden.

    The years he/she spent together building memories last a lifetime and should be cherished. Not cars/possessions.

    Just a thought. Good luck to you.

  3. creditcardfree Says:

    Take lots of pictures of the car, some with your DH and then sell the car. It definitely doesn't make sense to ship, nor for the MIL to buy when she can't drive. I would definitely use any proceeds towards debt.

    My husband will PCS this summer for school in VA. We think only 5 months, thus we will stay put until he moves to the next PCS. Where are you moving?

  4. leahb Says:

    His mother is 61 years old. There are two other siblings. One is 38 and lives in Philly with his wife, no kids. He has a Mustang. The other is a sister 33 and she's never been employed. His mother has been supporting her daughter and her husband for the last 5 years. Thankfully her husband got a job that will start next week which should alleviate her having to support them, which she can't afford to do anyways. The whole situation is a mess. It's like watching a train wreck in slow motion. She has the potential to be able to use what she has to support herself for the rest of her life but she has a serious spending problem. There is a very warped sense of reality, mostly because of all the medication and partly because her husband allowed it for so many years.

  5. leahb Says:

    We're moving to CT.

  6. CB in the City Says:

    I hear you about the train wreck. I'm watching my sister's train wreck in motion. There is no helping her. She will spend until she annihilates herself. Very painful to be her sibling. She has no sense of reality, either, but I can't blame medication. I do wonder about mental competency, though.

    Sell the car. You will never please an illogical person anyway.

  7. Joan.of.the.Arch Says:

    This is exactly what is meant by a white elephant gift. Something very nice and exotic but which costs you money again and again. Please, sell the car now for the $19K. Your life will be simpler and less costly without this white elephant. In fact your situation will be improved with that cash in hand to pay down debts by one third.

    Please don't pass on the white elephant to your MIL, either. She is marginal with her ability to survive the coming years even without having to pay for licensing, any personal property tax on the car, and the occasional maintenance that even a garaged car might need (Someone to go run the engine every now and then? Move the car to redistribute pressure on the tires?). Do EVERYONE a favor and sell that car at a price fair to your DH, the owner.

  8. Jerry Says:

    I agree that you can't reason with someone who is incapable, for whatever cause, of being reasonable... it just leads to frustration, and losing ten grand over this would just be a bad decision. Although she may WANT the car, she can likely ill afford the costs of insurance, license, etc. -- sometimes one person needs to step up and make the adult decision, and it looks like it might be DH's turn. Sorry it's so stressful for you...
    Jerry

  9. leahb Says:

    We have listed the car for sale. If it doesn't sell before July 10th then we will take it to Car Max and sell it to them. We told his mother that we would be keeping the car and that at some point we would be selling it. We are not going to tell her until she comes to visit again which should be Christmas at the earliest. There was a lot of tears from her but I really feel it's for the best and I am hoping that one day she will realize that too. She just purchased a home and my husband is flying down to help her move in in a few weeks. She hasn't switched her drivers license and when she does when he is down there I am 100% sure they are not going to give her a new one. She is going to have my husband test drive some cars for her while he is down there. A used one, that she hopefully can at least get in and out of on her own. It feels like some closure has come and I believe my husband is a little more a peace about this knowing his mother knows (at least I hope so).

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