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Stephen G.
Stephen G., Sr Financial Expert
Category: Finance
Satisfied Customers: 4009
Experience:  Extensive Experience with Tax, Financial & Estate Issues
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Hi I need some help ASAP.I am currently active duty in the

Resolved Question:

Hi I need some help ASAP.I am currently active duty in the Air Force.I am hoping to use my Top Secret clearance to get a job for when my Date of Separation comes in September.Currently our apartments lease has ended.Im struggling with a few things.First is financial issues.I am not able to save any money becuase my wife doesnt make enough to help me pay for rent.So I almost all of it and the rest goes to bills.Which leads me to whats more important;saving money for emergencies or paying off debts so that I can save more money as time goes along..Needless to say, I have parents in the local area;well actually about 60 miles from where I WORK, that said they would be willing to let us stay with them and basically pay a measly $300 for rent.Right now I get roughly $1800 each paycheck because I have dependents.Anyways, they offered to let us stay with them for however long I would like.I would take that chance without question it would seem right?Well a few things have thrown me off.Firstly,the drive is absolutely ridiculous.Thinking about wear and tear on my car is saddening.Next, I have two dogs that I have become EXTREMELY loving for.My parents told me I cant take both of them because one of the dogs is a Blue PitBull.He is a really nice dog and fun but the biases and opinions the media have portrayed on them make them the BAD DOG.So that means I would have to give him away knowing all the memories and money I put into saving the dogs life.Not to mention I have been reading that a lot of pounds in the area may put him to sleep because of his breed.That breaks my heart.Moving on....We have two apartment options that we have.One is $1245 for rent and that does NOT include gas,water and electricity.The other is $1325 but includes EVERYTHING except electricity.The rent I'm paying here is $1415 with nothing included besides it being renovated.To sum it up

1)Do I stay with my parents and make that LONG DRIVE,SACRIFICE PRIVACY,RID OF MY DOG and DEAL WITH THE INCONVENIENCE OF LIVING UNDER THIER ROOF TO SAVE $1000 OR MORE EACH MONTH?

OR

2)DO I GET EITHER OF THE APARTMENTS,KEEP THE DOGS AND ENJOY THE GREAT PERKS OF BEING AN ADULT UNDER MY OWN ROOF WHILE COMPROMISING FINANCIAL STABILITY.ALLOW ME TO SAY IM STABLE BUT LATELY I HAVE BEEN TAPPING INTO SAVINGS SO NOW MONEY IS NOT LOOKING GREAT.I HAVE A WIFE AND A 4 MONTH OLD.

PLEASE READ THE DETAILS AND GET BACK TO ME ASAP AS I HAVE UNTIL FRIDAY FOR ONE OF THE APARTMENTS.THANKS IN ADVANCE.
Submitted: 8 months ago.
Category: Finance
Expert:  Stephen G. replied 8 months ago.

Stephen G. :

Hello, my name isXXXXX & I'll be helping you today. My goal is to give you a complete & accurate answer that you can understand.

Customer:

Ok did you answer the question already?

Stephen G. :

Life doesn't always go the way we'ed like it to go, that's for sure.

Customer:

Exactly

Stephen G. :

First of all, on this Veterans' day, let me say Thank you for your service.

Customer:

Thats no problem serve.Its my honor

Customer:

Thank you.

Stephen G. :

Interestingly, I personally faced just about the same thing that you are dealing with many years ago.

Customer:

Oh really.

Stephen G. :

You can pretty much figure out that the path that is the most difficult for you do deal with is probably the best financially. What does you wife feel about living with your parents with the new baby?

Stephen G. :

Will your mother be able to watch the baby while she works?

Customer:

She doesn't mind it.But she's a little put off with the drive from their house to her job just like I am.No we will still have the baby sitter as well.

Stephen G. :

As an aside, 60 miles isn't the worst thing unless the travel isn't highway travel.

Stephen G. :

Will your wife keep the same job or is it possible for her to switch jobs closer to home?

Customer:

She will most likely keep the job she has now.

Customer:

Becuase we arent too sure how long we would stay if we do decide to live with my parents.

Stephen G. :

Having the chance to save on the rent and be able to save $1,000. a month +- would give you a big boost in terms of your financial situation;

Customer:

I agree with that.

Stephen G. :

The first thing to do is to pay down your debt and try not to use your credit cards for anything you can't pay off within the 30 days.

Stephen G. :

I lived with my mother for a year when I went out on my own and was able to save enough money to come up with a downpayment for a house.

Stephen G. :

Are there potential jobs for you after you leave the service in an area that you want to live that are relatively high paying compared to what you have now?

Stephen G. :

It's not too soon to explore the possibility of a job now for next September.

Stephen G. :

What are your special skills?

Customer:

Yes well I have been told that with my clearence a military background I could make about 60+ a year.So I have been told.I have no idea whether I would get hired in the first place.

Customer:

I deal with COMSEC(Communications Security) and I do radio for fighter and cargo jets.

Stephen G. :

Where are you now, what state?

Customer:

Im in the DC area.I live in Virginia.Stationed in Maryland.

Stephen G. :

Well, that's a big plus; you should consider a government job outside of the service; as a veteran you would be eligible for preferential hiring.

Customer:

Yes I was told that by someone who worked for CACI.

Customer:

I hope I can.Just got to get my problems sorted out that I have now.

Stephen G. :

What about the CIA, FBI, NSA or even a civilian employee of one of the services; can you get a job training employees somewhere?

Stephen G. :

Well, if you can put up with the circumstances, you should strongly consider living with your parents.

Customer:

Not sure. Havent looked into it.

Customer:

But whats your advice for ALL the issues i have now

Stephen G. :

How about the possibility of leaving the PitBull with a friend temporarily rather than giving him/her up completely.

Customer:

I had considered that too.I would just have to find someone who is willing to watch a PitBull.Its sad people are so judgmental of them.

Stephen G. :

The issues you have now; I covered, but to summarize:

Stephen G. :

Financially, way better to live with your parents; first pay off your debts, try to reduce your spending so you don't run up any more debts; save as much as you can each month; I'd put 2/3 toward debts until paid; 1/3 in the bank;

Customer:

So a third of roughly 1800 would round off to be about how much>

Stephen G. :

60 miles isn't that bad for the area you are in;

Stephen G. :

Not the 1,800. You have to spend something for everything except rent, which is reduced to 300. If you have $1,800, $1,200. toward debt, $600. in the bank.

Stephen G. :

How much do you owe in debt?

Stephen G. :

You are going to have increased gas expense; can you & your wife carpool?

Customer:

$560 for a car note. $99 for insurance.I a $70 phone bill.I have $75 for tsp each month.$120 for cable and internet.$160 for motorcycle insurance and another $100 for the motorcycle note itself.On top of some store credit cards which I pay almost $200 for totaling all of them.

Stephen G. :

One thing that will be critical is that BOTH you & your wife are committed to whatever you decide. If your wife isn't committed to living with your parents and there will be sacrifices involved, your life will be miserable; and that can lead to all kinds of issues.

Stephen G. :

Well your debt isn't totally out of control, so that's positive.

Stephen G. :

What kind of vehicle do you have that is costing $560. a month?

Customer:

The big thing that worries me is i put a down payment on that car around $2000 dollars and its almost maxed because of my silly mistakes.I got a 2013 Camaro.Needless to say im upset with myself extremley.

Customer:

Maxed out being a credit card

Customer:

I have not faulted on any payments and for that im so low on money.

Stephen G. :

You must go into living with your parents with a very positive attitude; figure out what you can do on your time off to help them; whether it is in the yard; painting; something that either wouldn't get done or your Dad would have to do, or something above & beyond the norm; that will pay back big dividends;

Stephen G. :

How long have you had the Camero?

Customer:

For 5-6 months.

Stephen G. :

Are you a car guy; ie. are cars more than transportation to you?

Customer:

I love cars.But im starting to see why everyone says cars are such liabilities.

Stephen G. :

As you've already figured out, that car payment is way too high for your situation; I would have limited a car payment to $300 - $350. absolute max.

Customer:

I wish I could go back to that.

Stephen G. :

If the Camero isn't that great on gas, you may need to make a change & absorb the loss of selling it for less than you owe on it; hopefully you could get what you owe on it. That's another matter.

Customer:

Im pretty sure they will give me less.If I sold it what should I do with the money?

Stephen G. :

You need to work on your Dog situation; if you are able to place that Dog so you can still see it & eventually get it back, you will do yourself a big favor.

Stephen G. :

If you sell the car you won't have any money from the sale as you'll have to pay off the note.

Customer:

Youre absolutley right about that.

Stephen G. :

Ok, anything else at this point?

Customer:

So you would stay with your parents and make that long drive versus enjoy the many things we take granted in life as an adult?I just want to make sure Im not the only one.And if not whats best for me at this point.Youve been really helpful so far.Thanks for that.

Stephen G. :

As I said, my advice is from a financial standpoint with practical considerations woven in (as you can see from my comments); Why? The financial advice is useless if you can't live with it; that's why you need to sit down with your wife and go over the decision process and make sure she's 110% on board; make it her idea if you can; I was lucky, my wife got along with my mother very well & she was actually excited to stay with her; my job at the time kept me away working long hours and that meant she wasn't alone, so she was all for it;

Stephen G. :

As far as being the "only one", you wouldn't believe how many people have had to move in with their parents just to survive; you're doing it to put yourself in a much stronger financial position; so that's very fortunate;

Stephen G. :

Take my comments about helping your father with something, etc.; don't forget, they are being inconvenienced too; having you & your wife & a little baby in the house isn't going to be an ideal situation for them either;

Stephen G. :

I'm sure they are viewing this as helping their grandchild just as much as helping you; so that's a big plus. You've got a long life ahead of you; living with this inconvenience for a year or two isn't going to kill you & will help you financially; if you are able to get a decent job, then you can start thinking about getting your own home again;

Customer:

You are right again.

Stephen G. :

I'll leave my contact information here in case you want to reach me in the future; keep it touch & let me know how things are going;..........................

Stephen G. :

If you want to contact me again with any tax or financial questions, you can just ask for "Steve G" at the beginning of your question. Thanks again for using us for your tax and financial questions. You may get a short survey from the site; if it isn't too much trouble I would appreciate it if you would answer it; the survey results are used by the site as an additional tool to rate our performance;

Please remember to rate my response; it is the only way we get credit for our work.

Customer:

Where is your contact info?

Stephen G. :

You just need to ask for me "Steve G" at the beginning of your question.

Stephen G. :

If you want to contact me again with any tax or financial questions, you can just ask for "Steve G" at the beginning of your question. Thanks again for using us for your tax and financial questions. You may get a short survey from the site; if it isn't too much trouble I would appreciate it if you would answer it; the survey results are used by the site as an additional tool to rate our performance;

Please remember to rate my response; it is the only way we get credit for our work.

Customer:

Ok thank you so much.Ill contact you soon if thats ok.

Stephen G. :

Anytime is fine. If I'm not on the site, I will return shortly.

Stephen G. :

Please remember to rate my performance;

Customer:

I will thanks

Stephen G., Sr Financial Expert
Category: Finance
Satisfied Customers: 4009
Experience: Extensive Experience with Tax, Financial & Estate Issues
Stephen G. and 4 other Finance Specialists are ready to help you

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