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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I know I said I was leaving for to do some stuff, but I thought this was more important for the moment. :laugh:

Sen Reid has come right out and said that it looks like we're headed for a shutdown. HR 1297 is stuck in committee. It really looks like our military families are not going to get paid, and if they do, it will only be half as much as it normally is because they'll only be getting paid through the 8th.

I'm asking you guys because you are the experts. I'd like ideas to share with everyone about how to get through this. Things I'm looking for are places to go for help, which bills to pay first, how to talk to creditors, etc. The only thing I'm really not looking for are the obvious ones, things like selling stuff.

I'd also like confirmation on something. Am I right in assuming that late bills won't show up on credit reports until they're late for 30 days, and is it safe to say this to people?

Remember this is short term stuff. Saving 10% of your income isn't going to be helpful.

Thanks in advance, guys!
 

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If they belong to a credit union, see if they might have shutdown loans.

My dept has a credit union associated with it and I saw they are offering loans up to $3k with no interest for 60 days (so I assume people could easily pay that back as I don't think we're in for a 2 month shutdown). Taking out a loan is not ideal, but if anyone is desperate and has no other way to pay essentials, the terms are decent.
 

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Remember to pay for things on the basis of most essential first:

Shelter
Food
Utilities

Everything else is secondary. It might not be fun, but you can live without your car and your cable. You can get by with only cheap groceries. You don't want to be homeless or sitting in the dark without heat.
 

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The (insert appropriately named service branch here) Emergency Relief Fund can be of assistance to those families in dire need.

Welcome to Army Emergency Relief Navy-Marine Corps Relief Society Air Force Aid Society Armed Forces Relief Trust

The USO may also be able to provide relief. I also strongly recommend people to look at Military OneSource They have great information/resources there.


You are correct on bills only showing up on credit until 30 days late.

Call their banker and explain the situation (if they don't bank with a military bank that will understand). The bank may be willing to cover a few checks if needed or roll a car payment over, etc.

That's all I have off the top of my head.
 

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I agree with Daisygirl - pay only the essentials.

I'd also call all the other companies and explain the situation....most will be able to either postpone the bill or let you pay a small amount and then catch up when you can. Most are understandable if they're aware of the situations and not downright ignored (I did this when I was unemployed and could only pay $50 on my line of credit for a few months...as soon as I had work I paid the full amount plus some extra...the bank totally understood, made a note on my file, and didnt ding me for the small payments).

Learning some recipes from the homefront is always a good idea as well as a lot of them used the most basic ingredients; cook in smaller batches so that you're not tempted to over eat. Cook everything from scatch and if you can't dont buy it out! Have tea lights and other candles on hand and spend a few evenings with those instead of electrical lights; go look and learn about the constallations in the eveings to save on power. Picnics in the park and by playgrounds so the kids can play outside and again, saves on elec. Dont take long shower or baths, just a quick rinse is all you need. Same goes for clothes - most of what you wear does not have to washed after one wearing (except for undies and those can be done by hand each evening in a bucket and hung to dry....).

There are a ton of little things to do to keep your bills to a minimum when you dont have the cash upfront.

{{{hugs}}}
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Thanks all, I'm going to pass these on. :)
 

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Call your banks/ creditors. Services Bank here announced that if there is a shutdown, they'll offer 0% loans up to the amount of the last LES until military gets paid. They also stated they will work with people on deferring loan payments at no cost.
 

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I'm an army wife and very paranoid about this! We used all of our ( my premarriage savings) to pay off all our consumer debts but there are still the mthly bills. Every military family I know lives pay check to paycheck and most are 1 income households so this is a big deal! We already went on a spending freeze in our household besides the absolute essentials and must pay bills.
 

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If I could not make ends meet and I KNEW it was a short term problem (like waiting for a guaranteed chq to come) I think I would just rob Peter to pay Paul.

I have a borrowing account where the minimum payment is about $250. So I would pay the $250 and then use my borrowing account to pay energy, phone, cable Internet and heat. Then as soon as the money came in I would pay borrowing.

To do things like cut cable you are not going to get the instant cash flow boost you need.
 

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I already think that some great advice has been given. My best advice is to pay the basics...house and utilities and buy basics for food and cook from scratch. No eating out. Cut down on electric and water usage. *lots of tips here at Frugal Village for those. The weather is good so why not declutter and have a yard sale. The extra money can go for bills or food. I don't know how many times when money has been short and I didn't have quite enough to pay my bills that I've loaded up a few things...outgrown clothing, toys no longer played with, unused household items and taken them out to a local flea market and made enough money to cover what I needed and sometimes a few dollars extra.
 

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If I could not make ends meet and I KNEW it was a short term problem (like waiting for a guaranteed chq to come) I think I would just rob Peter to pay Paul.

I have a borrowing account where the minimum payment is about $250. So I would pay the $250 and then use my borrowing account to pay energy, phone, cable Internet and heat. Then as soon as the money came in I would pay borrowing.

To do things like cut cable you are not going to get the instant cash flow boost you need.
You may not get the cash up front if you cancel things like cable (although some companies will suspend your account for a month or more if you ask), but it's one less bill to pay at the end of the month.

This is one of those situations where making super drastic cuts may not have to happen but taking steps to lower your bills is never a bad idea anyways :couch:
 
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