July had many surprises in store for me. I had collected almost $200 in an emergency fund, and had a car problem that used most of it (thanks emergency fund, though!), our power bill almost doubled its normal value (luckily it’s split 3 ways), and I had a few computer expenses necessary to do some side work. At the end of the month, my total credit card debt comes to a total of $8,875.09, which is almost $200 more than it was last month. Now, the computer expenses I put on my lowest APR account, so it isn’t going to kill me. Hopefully doing the side work will quickly make up for the initial outlay.
At any rate, I am officially over getting late fees and overdrafts, and think I have a handle on things. It is tempting to not go back to spending a ton of money everywhere, but I’m still motivated. My only real difficulty is eating meals prepared at home, instead of going out. August will be my month to really work on that. I’m also excited because September 1 I’m going to make the call to all my creditors asking if I can have a rate decrease. Hopefully that will jump start my process. I decided to wait a few months to do that so I could make payments on time more often and decrease my balances, to show good faith so they will hopefully be a bit nicer.
I’m not feeling too bad even though I have more debt to deal with. I made some extra payments towards my higher-interest accounts, and I have two side jobs that may be bringing in extra income this time around. I have a solid budget I stick to well, and have really worked on all the psychological aspects of why I got myself into so much trouble. I start back to school in a month, and feel like I’ll have much less stress this time around, since I have a handle on other areas of my life.
So, my plan for August is to really work on eating at home and brown-bagging my lunch. In addition, I hope to collect another $200 in an emergency fund, and put an extra $100 towards my higher interest debt. In addition, I have a few more light bulbs to replace with CFLs, and maybe that will help the power drain. I feel like I’m in a good position, and well suited to finish this by the end of 2008.