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When the job is gone and the money runs out!

1909 Views 38 Replies 24 Participants Last post by  JW Parker
I'm OK for a few months but many of the people laid-off have nothing when the unemployment is used up. What are they going to do? How are they going to pay the bills?
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These last couple days I have had that awful panicky mentality that sticks to you when you're worried about something. I am terrified that we will lose our income and not have enough money to pay the mortgage. Terrified is a strong word, but it is the appropriate one for this emotion.

My husband still has his job, and we even have a little money set aside. I worry that it isn't enough. I worry that something will come up. I worry and worry and worry. I try not to, but this feeling has been so overwhelming that rather than avoid it, I decided to embrace it. That has helped, because I have started making lists of other ways for us to make income, ways for us to lower costs, people that could move in with us to lighten the load, that sort of thing.

It's funny, because we are doing better financially than we ever have before. And yet I am more concerned about our finances than I was when we first started tackling maxed out credit cards. Now we have not had any credit card debt for several months. We have a very modest mortgage payment, it is equal to what we used to pay for a studio apartment when we were first married. But here I am, worrying.

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The whole situation frightens me. My 20 year old son is moving back from Ohio, and giving up his baby for adoption because his job does not make enough to support it. Last night, I told him to bring the baby and come here. Better to combine incomes and have me here to care for the baby than to lose a child simply over income. It will be tight, but we can manage. For now.

What worries me is what DH will do for a living when people stop buying stone. If the stone quarries start shutting down, there will be no demand for the pallets he builds. I'm going over to the recycling plant, myself. A job is a job. A paycheck is a paycheck. I've heard from several people that they would never sink so low as to work in recycling or trash for a living. Hey! The garbage man makes more money then I do! I am not too proud to haul trash for a living. It's better than nothing.
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I agree, Ninn! It will that 'can do' attidude that will make or break many.. Good luck with you grandbaby.. Ours is such a joy, I can not even imagine our lives without him...Prayers QB
I think we'll start seeing things the way they use to be, with multi-generational homes. Families getting back together to work and support one another. IMO, this actually would not be a bad idea. DH and I have already told both sets of parents to keep exta gas on hand for their vehicles and to come to us when it gets too hard for them, since they are all on very small fixed incomes. We have room for extra people and would have enough word to keep us all for extra hands. The experience and wisdom of our elders would be a wonderful benefit. My Dad learned how to forage at a very young age and knows how to do most things related to a farm. My Mom is a retired nurse, so she could help with medical needs. My in-laws each come with their own valuable knowledge. Besides, I think grandkids could greatly benefit from having grandparents around. I disagree that it takes a village to raise a child, but it sure would be nice to have family around to help. :)
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Sonshine, we are anticipating my mother and her husband possibly coming to stay with us at some point too. My mother is still young (46...don't tell her I told y'all!) but she has some problems with her neck from a car accident long ago and can't do heavy work. She does love taking care of children though. If things get bad, I'm going to tell her to come stay with us. They are renting a place now, so they don't have a home to try and hold onto, and they have no family nearby them now.

Plus if my mother was home with the toddler and the baby due this spring, I would be able to be out and looking for work. She wouldn't be crazy about the animals, or working in the garden, but having someone to "baby-sit" while I work on the garden or work at a job would make things easier.

A lot of people probably look at me and think I'm poor. I'm raising a family in a little 800 sq.ft. house. I drive a 91 model Jeep. I only have part time jobs and probably only average $1000-1200 a month. But it's all paid for and when I consider whats probably gonna happen to all those people whose eyes were bigger then their wallets, I don't feel so poor but well blessed. Thankyou father!
We're there too....dh has been laid off a month and no prospects. Once unemployment runs out I don't know what we'll do. I'm just praying that he finds something before then. We're even considering me finding a part time job to help out.
When the unemployment runs out, apply for welfare. Also look to Community Action Centers and Churches for assistance. Most have food pantries and clothing at least. Also, it helps to make yourself known in the community. If people trust you, you could get offers for work where you are paid "under the table". No benefits, but no taxes either. Both sides benefit. No, not legal, but feeding one's family has priority over a government's greed. I've been seeing a lot of that happening this year. A lot of bartering going on too.
We used to have about 1 person go down the alley every week or so looking for saleable "junk". Now we have at LEAST one a day FOUR different people came down the alley trash-picking!

Got a kick out of one guy I saw the other day,though. Most trash-pickers use shopping carts, and every now and then a wagon. New fellow that came down was on a bicycle with a re-made bicycle trailer he could haul off either LOTS of things or BIG things! That guy's gonna go somewhere!

First thing to do is NOT panic. Go thru your budget and eliminate ALL unneeded expenses such as cable, Internet, cell phones, club memberships, kids activities, all recreation, etc. Immediately stop paying credit cards (every $ goes only for necessities). Do not use credit cards...using a credit card when you are insolvent is considered FRAUD. Sell extra vehicles or let them be repossessed which eliminates expenses related to them. Close bank accounts and operate on cash only...can't garnish your employer if you're not working and can't garnish your bank account if you don't have one. Cash and money orders are the way to go.

Then, if you have a mortgage, you need to contact your mortgage holder and let them know you have lost your job and see what they can do to accomodate you. Most are more willing to accomodate than they were before the deluge of foreclosures. Know what your rights are. For instance, you stop making mortgage payments...1st month you get an overdue notice...2nd month you get an stronger letter...3rd month a notice of right to cure...4th month foreclosure is filed (you have a timeframe in which to file an answer before they get their judgment plus the courts are now backed up with foreclosures which might gain you additional time)...5th or 6th month foreclosure is completed. In Iowa, if you filed a delay of sale with the Court as soon as the foreclosure is filed, you gain an additional few months after the entry of the foreclosure before you have to move out. So all told you have 9 to 12 months before you have to vacate. I have no clue about other states laws but you should inquire before you get too far down the foreclosure road. This time allows you the opportunity to make contingent plans, maybe even find a job. Unfortunately, at some point you will likely face bankruptcy to clear all the debt, but what else can you do?

Keep necessities first i.e. food, shelter, transportation, medical. Don't be pressured into sending $'s to nasty bill collectors. Use an answering machine to screen calls and delete rather than returning calls. Sure you owe the money, but you simply cannot waste any money needed for survival now on past mistakes.
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Got my first unemployment check a few days ago. Since I didn't work very much this year it was pretty small, right around a hundred bucks. I work as a painter so the work is seasonal. Before I was laid off last year I was told I could come back to work 4-5 months. I waited and waited, bugged the boss, waited some more and finally I ran out of unemployment half way through May. I had been laid off since November of last year. I took a job as a relief milk truck driver. It was only part time but it was enough for me to make it and start saving some money. Mid-August I got a call from my old boss (they had previously told me that they lost some contracts and were cutting back due to high gas prices). She wanted me to come back to work, figuring that milk was going to be going down very shortly and I was going to be out of work anyway I reluctantly took my old job back. After coming back to work I found out that someone else had been hired and had been working the whole time. Needless to say I wasn't happy but I kept my mouth shut since I needed the money. This company is a very small and is ran by husband/wife team. The husband (who loves to drink) hired an acquaintance of his while he was drunk. This acquaintance is a woman and I think there is a little more going on than meets the eye. The wife wasn't too pleased but went along with it anyway. I was able to work until the first week of November and it got too cold to paint. I tried getting back my other job of hauling milk but predictably milk is down enough for the dairy not to need my help. So I have been hunting for work, and right now there doesn't seem to be much of it around :( I have a bit of money in savings but I hate to blow through it all since I was going to use it for a down payment on a house (I sold my old property this year). I think I am going to sell my car and just drive the old farm truck. They both get about the same mileage anyway, just the car looks much prettier. It is the wrong time of year to sell my motorcycle otherwise I would sell that too.
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The job picture around here don't look very good. I'm not going to panic but I am getting concerned. On Thursday this week I'm going to try and find out how long I can draw unemployment. If it is 26 weeks then I have until the second week of April. I don't plan on using any of my savings to live on. I will take any kind of a job before I will do that. I have to bring home $600 a month or give up something. I have a debt that I am trying to pay off. Min. payment on that debt is $280 a month. I own my house so everything else is adjustable.
In Florida you can't get welfare or food stamps if you own your home.
My heart goes out to everybody facing this crisis. Is there any way to set up a "buddy system" to help out any Homesteading Today members in every state (or province if it hits us here too) that are in dire need? Things such as a few pounds of potatos or cabbage, childrens winter clothes, etc. Keep in mind a trade or barter system.....
DH and I were just talking about how if you HAVE a good job, you need to be real vigilant to keep it at this point. Even tho it may feel like it's a pain to get up and go in everyday, at least you're not sitting at home worrying about NEEDING a job and not being able to get one... or having to take one for a small fraction of what you used to make.

My heart goes out to those who have lost their jobs are expecting to be laid off soon. Very hard times ahead.

ETA: There are a lot of things I'd like to hire someone to do around the place; and I have no problem with paying cash for the work.
In Florida you can't get welfare or food stamps if you own your home.
Really??? That's not fair! I knew people in Florida who owned their own homes, but they were falling down shacks!
I'm not really planing on wefare or food stamps. I have enough food to last at least a year. I could live without utilities if I have to. It is just my debt that I don't know about. Min. payment on that is $280 a month and the intrest rate is 6.2%. If I get behind the intrest rate jumps way up there. I don't think it would be good to fall behind on that. This being unemployed is cutting into my 5 yr. plan to move to the country. I need to put back $200 a week to keep that plan on track. It cost me about $150 a week to live without giving up something. $600 a month don't sound like much but without a job that will be a lot when the unemployment runs out. I applied for a job today that starts at $10.82 and advances to $14.48. I could make it on that.
I think there is a 13 week extension on unemployment right now.
This afternoon, I talked to another fellow that was laid-off the same time I was. He is broke, drinking alot more and spending his days down at some bar. He has a wife and at least one child to think about but obviously he isn't thinking. I tryed to tell him that drinking up his unemployment money is not going to help.
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