This is embarrassing ...

Posted by: NYWoman

This is embarrassing ... - 01/27/08 01:36 AM

For the first time in years, I have found myself behind in paying bills. Last February (2007), I was laid off from a job I had held for 13-1/2 years. It took me until this past October to find another job.

Because I was unemployed for seven months, I had no income other than unemployment. What is amazing is I was able to keep up with all of my bills during that period. I received a decent severance package and cashed out my 401(k), so that was a financial cushion.

So here I am, employed full-time, and now I can't pay my bills. The firm where I work changed their pay schedule to every other Friday. Sounds good, right? Unfortunately, instead of 24 paychecks, we now receive 26. Again, sounds good, right? Sadly, because the pay is spread out, what I take home is less. Does what I wrote make sense?

So where am I going with all of this? Here is my question: How do I approach my creditors to let them know I can no longer keep up with even the minimum payments?

If anyone has been in a similar situation, I would sure appreciate your advice.
Posted by: Dotsie

Re: This is embarrassing ... - 01/27/08 02:52 AM

I know a woman who had to compile her bills and turn them over to a bill consolidating service that worked with the people she owed. Apparently, the service told them what they could pay each month and they chose to accept it. I guess they thought it was better than getting nothing. I can find out the service if you'd like, but I'm sure there are some in your town.

I'm sure you've already considered what you can do to cut expenses in the upcoming months.

Sorry to hear you are facing a tough financial time. You are always welcome to hang out at BWS. It's FREE!
Posted by: Anno

Re: This is embarrassing ... - 01/27/08 09:22 AM

Don't be embarrassed, finances are tough in the best of times for many of us.

I have actually contacted creditors in the past and asked if I could skip a payment for one month. Usually, many creditors are happy to help out a bit, if you contact them. What they have no patience for is people that simply pay late without contacting them first.
Posted by: Louisa

Re: This is embarrassing ... - 01/27/08 01:15 PM

My company just did this as well. Beginning Jan 1, we started getting paid every two weeks instead of every week. However, I don't take home any less money. That part I don't understand. But, I did overdraw my checkbook the first week of it. Lucky for me, I have overdraft protection. I found I needed to come up with a plan to pay my bills a little differently and be aware that I have money automatically transferred into savings every week, which I had forgotten and that had not changed. But if you somehow end up with less take home, that won't work for you. It must have to do with taxes being taken out. Maybe you can go to payroll and change your deduction or something.
Posted by: Saundra

Re: This is embarrassing ... - 02/10/08 01:01 AM

Hi NYWoman. I've been away from the forums and missed welcoming you. Louisa's right about changing your deductions. I did that the middle of last year - from 1 to 2 to get more cash. I'll find out how that works for me when I get my taxes done. You can't forget about the back end.

I do errands in a circle so I don't waste gas and get all my books and movies from the library. It all helps. I'm sorry you're having such a difficult time.