First: Accumulation of stuff. Next: Diminution of cash to pay it off.

DH and I have accumulated over $11,000 of credit card debt this past year. The first part was due to buying new to newish furniture to outfit our brand new Florida condo. The second part was due to upgrading and remodeling our NY primary residence in order to prepare it for eventual sale. All the accumulation is over. Now, it’s time to pay the piper.

Granted, almost all of the consumer credit card debt is at zero percent (the other is at 2.99%) but when you are entering full-time retirement status, as we will be, it’s best to make your entry as debt-free as possible. DH keeps changing his mind as to when he wants to be retired. His main original goal was 65 (he’s currently 60). A few months ago he changed it to 62. Yesterday, he announced he wants to retire at the end of either this June or July.

DH recently took on a big project specifically designed to earn him enough money to pay off all our debt. So far, this month we paid off two charge cards in full. June we will be paying off another two credit cards and by the end of July we should be as close to debt-free as we’ll ever be.

We’ve also been socking away any additional cash into our savings account to tide us over till DH starts collecting Social Security in twenty months.

DH has been having a difficult time with his previous, horrendous Obamacare medical insurance. The first medical insurance company went bankrupt after only eleven months in operation. Obamacare switched him over to another medical insurance provider but they only lasted nine months. This time, NY State picked him up with terrific low-cost insurance. In the interim, the nine month insurance company reversed all his medical reimbursements and denied ALL of his claims from 2016. It took DH hours and hours on the phone, days and days in communication to finally get the matter resolved, only to have the nine month insurance company pull the same crap all over again.  When you are suffering from a heart condition, as DH is, you don’t need all this stress and health care worry. Trust me on that!

We just got another medical bill that the nine month insurance company denied (now they claim DH didn’t meet his 2016 deductible. How could he have when the insurance company reversed ALL the medical reimbursements for 2016, thus bringing him back to zero? Duh?) and DH decided rather than argue with the provider anymore, he just paid the $650 and will forget about it. That’s probably what the insurance company was hoping he would do. I hope DH didn’t set a precedent he may later regret. We don’t need medical bills on top of the credit card debt we’re currently paying back.

shoesAnyway, now that we are in credit card payback mode, for the time being DH and I are on austerity. It’s only a temporary condition and one we are quite accustomed to surviving through. This means for the next two or three months NO spending on anything extra. I’ve stocked up the pantry. Anything that needs to be bought has been purchased already. Other than gas and food (and monthly meds) I don’t see any new expenditures coming up in the very near future. DH needed a pair of shoes/sneakers and absolutely refuses to wear shoes purchased from either Goodwill or a thrift shop. That means DH gets new shoes. Not to falter, I had two coupons for a total of $15 off a brand new pair of shoes from DSW. DH managed to score a great pair of Sketchers that originally sold for $60, at $54.95 from DSW. When combined with my additional $15 off coupons, his grand total was $39.95 (total savings $20.05)

Live well and prosper, my friend. Live well and prosper.

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