That One Time We Bought a House that We Couldn’t Afford


The truth of the matter is that if we are being honest, we knew we purchased too much home before they could tack the “SOLD!” tag onto the sign in front of the new home. However in practical terms it took us about 7 months to fully comprehend.

Starting Credit Card Debt (01.01.19): $126,310.77
Current Credit Card Debt: $109,570.87
Total Paid Off: $16,739.90
Income Going to Savings: 2%

My wife and I bought a house in June of 2018. We actually bought our 3rd home to be exact. Now before you think I’m some well-to-do, let me tell you a bit about my first two houses…

Our first home was a very modest rambler that was located just a stone’s throw from a Federal Correctional Institution, or in other words… a prison. It was close enough to our home that we could hear the prisoners playing softball on warm summer evenings, and I often took advantage of the way the yard lights illuminated my darkened house to navigate to the bathroom in the middle of the night.

Long before “Orange is the New Black” made prisons chic and hip, people would often asked us, “Aren’t you worried about living that close to a prison? What if someone breaks out?”

My response was always that if someone was going to break out, they sure as hell weren’t going head to the modest rambler a few blocks away and hang out for a month. At most they were going to steal one of our cars to get as far away as possible as quickly as possible.

When we moved into that home, we had a nice retired couple living on one side of us and a young family on the other. Across from us were some well maintained and relatively new duplex apartments, and all of this combined to make our dead-end street a pretty great place for a first home.

Within 3 years however, the retired couple moved to Arizona and sold their home to a rental agency. That agency in turn rented the home to a man who (get this) worked on race cars that he raced at the local race track on weekends. Apparently when you work on race cars, it requires that you rev them up to deafening volumes at all hours of the morning and night, usually while blaring Megadeth or Iron Maiden.

Within a month of this happening, the married couple with the kids on the other side got a divorce, and things went really sideways for the dad. The mom moved out, leaving the teenage kids behind, and the dad began drinking heavily. I know this because he offered to drink with me at least 5 times a week. His 15 year-old son held parties almost every weekend, usually with dad partaking, and we had the pleasure of catching young men standing on his roof peeing on to our roof next door on more than one occasion.

Yup… you read that correctly.Read More »

Your Parrot Knows You Pick Your Nose

This blog is my parrot and my debt is my finger two knuckles deep in my left nostril, so in the cage it stays for now.

Starting Debt (01.01.19): $124,310.77
Current Debt: $107,303.52
Total Paid Off: $17,007.25
Income Going to Savings: 1%

I’ve received some really flattering early responses to this blog, and I would really like others to read it. When you’re starting a blog, one of the primary tips that everyone seems to agree on is to share the blog on your social media channels. Start with those you know, and begin to build word of mouth.

And yet I’m still not ready to share it with people I actually know…

Not sharing has been an emotional struggle, because I know that I probably have several friends and family members who are in a similar financial situation to mine. Some may not be quite as buried as I am, some might be worse, but the simple fact is that in 2019 just about everyone has some kind of debt. I’d love for them to see these posts and follow along with me on my journey, because I know at times it can feel very isolating to think you’re probably the only person on the face of the planet dumb enough to get yourself into a situation like this.

And yet even knowing that I might be able to positively impact people so close to me, I still can’t bring myself to post a link on my various social media platforms.

I think part of the reason is that I’ve always outwardly portrayed myself as someone who has it all together — great family, fantastic job, active lifestyle, nice home on 5 acres, trips to Disneyland, etc. — and while most of those things hold true (I do have a great family, and a fantastic job!), the simple fact is that I’m living paycheck to paycheck. So far my wife and I have pulled it off each month and have never made a late payment on anything, but sometimes it’s by the very skin of our teeth!

Then there are things like my Dad. My Dad owns and operates a bar in the very small town that I grew up in. Unless something has changed recently, it’s the only bar in town, and it sits right across from the only supermarket in town, just down the road from the only gas station in town.

It would take all of 28 seconds for my situation to spread around that town, and while it’s nothing to be outright ashamed of — I am taking aggressive and thoughtful steps to remedy my situation after all — it’s still not a burden I want to put on him to have everyone who walks into his bar turn to him and say, “How is your boy doing? I read his blog. Is he going to lose his house?”

My Dad’s first response would be, “What in the hell is a blog?” After that though, it would get really exhausting really quickly.

Imagine if you owned a really rad parrot. You know the kind that are all red and have the rainbow feathers? You had this beautiful parrot and you wanted to show it to everyone because… well you know… parrots.

But this parrot knew that you picked your nose.

So now you have this really cool thing that you’d like to share with others that you’re really proud of, but the moment you do it’s just going to scream, “NOSE MINER! NOSE MINER! RAWWW! NOSE MINER!”

This blog is my parrot and my debt is my finger two knuckles deep in my left nostril, so in the cage it stays for now.

That’s not to say it won’t change. I’ll probably be much more willing to share when I get a bit more paid off. Show that I’ve learned from my mistakes and actually have my life on track.

In the meantime, if you are reading this blog and you like what you see, maybe share it with a friend or two. That way I can keep potentially helping others, and I don’t need to worry about my Dad.

To Summarize: Buy a dog. They can’t tell on you for picking your nose.