Thursday, September 29, 2011

Chris McGinty - Enemy of Debt - Episode Twelve

Welcome to Episode Twelve of: Chris McGinty – Enemy of Debt

For an explanation of this feature, and disclaimers that talk about how I’m not a professional money anything, go to Episode One. If you are caught up to speed though, we’ll begin discussing my friend who called me in financial desperation on July 10, 2011. Out of some, perhaps slight respect for his privacy, I’m not using his real name. I am instead referring to him as Genghis N. Consistent.

So we got together on the Wednesday of his check for his main job. His check was short because of a missed day somewhere in all of that mess. I’m going to make him go get his pay stub, so I can make sure he’s not using his money behind my back. Sounds funny, huh? The thing is that much of his ability to pay this stuff up has been leveraged on my money. He’s owed me some amount of money this whole time, up until we cashed his check. I don’t think I will be loaning him any more. And there is a reason. Read on.

I told him we needed to go see about getting the loan from the bank. Better to have the lower upkeep on a bank loan than the payday loan fees. He got all lazy on me, not that this is anything new, and said that the paperwork took too long to fill out. I pointed out that we had an hour before we could even start paying his bills. He had time to fill out paperwork.

The problem was that we wouldn’t be able to get it until Friday. It’s some odd thing where, because he has overdraft protection, he can get $500 even though he doesn’t have any money in his account. They then set it up as payments, and he pays small fees. Again, it’s still better than the payday loan places.

The plan was to get the loan, pay his rent, pay the two payday loans that were due, and try to actually get rid of both of them. Something has been telling me lately to get my money back, and not loan him any more. He’s finally in a position that he can pay everything on his own. My thought process was that if I loaned him enough to get rid of two payday loans that it would save him quite a bit in fees in the long term.

The problem is that I don’t know which time that he called in to work caused his check to be short, but it still compromised our ability to pay stuff by nearly $100. Each time he gets money, the first thing I have him do is pay me back, and then choose whether to loan him more. This time when I had the money in my hand, I had this feeling that I should keep it. I’m tired of struggling financially because of his issues. I can struggle financially just fine on my own, thank you.

We went and paid the one payday loan that had to be paid before Friday, and then we went to our respective homes to get some sleep for our respective guard shifts. No issues there. I was tired, and I’m sure he was tired, but we got through them. Luckily, I got to go home and sleep all day. He had a doctor appointment for his daughter. While I feel for him that he would be tired for work, I’ve had to point out to him a couple of times that I always end up being tired after helping him when it’s not even my financial troubles.

If you haven’t already figured out where this is going, he called in to the guard job. His excuse is that he had no sleep, and working a fourteen hour shift would be hard on no sleep. I admit that that is true, but I’ve done it before, and I’ve managed to stay awake. He could have done it. Yes, he would be tired, especially having to pay bills the next day, and then work his regular job that night. My issue is that he is losing out on a little over $100 that would be useful when he gets that paycheck. He keeps doing this crap.

The first check he got after I agreed to help him, back in July, was short because he was sick. He tried calling in the day he was waiting for the check from the stock option account, but I insisted that he go in. He missed two days at his main job when his van broke down. He also missed two guard shifts because he had no vehicle. Then he missed four days when his daughter was in the hospital. While almost all of his days off from his main job were covered by paid time off days, he still ended up short on this check.

Let’s ignore that for a moment though. The real point here is that he’s using up his paid time off excessively fast. Eventually if he misses days, valid or not, it will start to affect his check. Since he is a pretty lazy person, who calls in a lot, I imagine it will happen sooner rather than later.

I think it’s the laziness that is bothering me. We’re all lazy. We all like to chill out sometimes. I took some time off recently myself. No kidding. I took a week off by only working 46 hours. I’m such a slacker. I spent that entire time taking care of my day to day life though. I didn’t even really get to catch up on sleep, because I had so much to do that normally doesn’t get done when I’m working the hours I do.

It just makes me nervous having him owe me money. Excessive calling in can lead to job loss. If he has no job then he can’t pay me back. Further, I’ve always felt that I’m more serious about getting his bills paid than he is. At some point, I need to just back off some. I need to quit putting my money at risk, and I need to stop losing so much sleep over it.

So I think that I will go with him tomorrow to get that loan. We will pay his rent. We will pay just the reinstatement fee on the second payday loan. We will pay his electric. We will put the rest of his money into his gas tank. He will owe me nothing.

The trick from here will be to simply save up for his bills for next month, and whatever isn’t held aside for his bills will be thrown at the payday loans. I think he’ll still have them paid off by October, provided he doesn’t keep shorting his checks by calling in. After that the matter will be one of him saving for a car, saving for Christmas, and saving to pay off the title loan before they sue him. Hopefully, by the end of the year I can just hand it all back over to him. And hopefully he won’t mess it up.

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