Learning to live on very little........

Discussion in 'Fibromyalgia Main Forum' started by silky17, Sep 13, 2005.

  1. silky17

    silky17 New Member

    Hi to all who reads this.

    I have been contemplating alot on how the heck to live on SS for the rest of my life. It is getting really scary for me. I was wondering how some of you have coped?

    Before I became diabled & (earning my own pay)I struggled with my house payment even then. It is about $716.00 a month. I wonder ........How am I going to survive? I have no signifagent other, no parents etc etc.I am not so sure if I had a person in my life if they would stick by me.

    My mortgage company has given me a forebearance since this started. Has anyone ever had that to deal with and what has become of that? It will be almost 8 months since I have not worked and I will have to pay that back. I was wondering if someone could give a heads-up with that.

    Thanks all,
  2. rileyearl

    rileyearl New Member

    I've been thinking about this, too. So far, I've been able to keep up with my home based internet store, but it's hard!

    I've heard about reverse mortgages, but don't know if you might be too young or what. Maybe someone else will know about that.

    Good Luck!

  3. silky17

    silky17 New Member

    Of course I am too young. I thought that would be a good thing to use

    How is that home based store coming along and what is it that you do??

  4. JLH

    JLH New Member

    Silky, if your house payment is $716/month, then you are in BIG trouble if the only income you will have is Social Security's disability insurance (SSDI)!!

    The average SSDI is around $860/mo. or something like that! It's according to what your income has been during your working career. Some people who have had decent jobs get around $1400/month. There is a max payment, but I don't remember that either.

    I get a pension from my employer of 30 years as well as SSDI, which is on the higher side, and I would never be able to make it with a $716 house payment!!

    I know my mother was widowed 4 years ago. She now has to live on $1560 month. Her house is paid for, as is her 2002 model car, and she had to make some drastic budget cuts in order to make ends meet.

    For example, she cut out an extra Sunday paper that she received, she cancelled all magazine subscriptions, she cut her TV cable down to the basic package, she cut out the internet, she cut down to spending on $25/ea for grandchildren ONLY for Christmas, she eliminated birthday gifts for everyone but the grandchildren, she only eats out so many days per month, she really watches how she cooks to utilize weekly specials at grocery stores, she turns her temperature down in the winter and goes around the house in sweats and a sweater, etc.

    I worry about her not buying enough groceries to eat a balanced meal. However, she has a lot of medical bills and takes a lot of meds that she needs to pay for.

    If she had to make a house payment, I don't know where she would get the money. If she needs an appliance, major repairs to her house, etc., her children (I am one of four) buy it for her.

    I don't know how anyone survives on Social Security alone if they are a single person still paying on property, etc. My in-laws have no trouble because both are still living and both receive SS checks in addition to my FIL's pension check, which is quite a bit.

    The only solution I could see would be to think about selling your house and moving to an apartment, or another house, which would be less expensive.

    Good luck, dear.

    I may have misunderstood your question and your situation. If I did, I'm sorry that I responded with such bleak info.

  5. sunflowergirl

    sunflowergirl Well-Known Member

    figure out. I would suggest possibly having a friend or someone else move in to share the expenses. Possibly rent a bedroom or two, making sure you carefully screen each person thoroughly.

    I've thought about this myself. At this point my husband still works but we've talked about it. We both said we could close off part of our house and rent two bedrooms and a bathroom to college students. Where there's a will there's a way.
  6. orachel

    orachel New Member

    First, so very sorry you're having to go thru this. I'm so new to the illness, I havent had to face those kinds of choices yet, but I see them looming in the VERY near future. Scary stuff!!!

    I obviously don't know specifics abt your situation, but I sold mortgages for 10 years, so I can offer some generalizations. First of all, forebearance and how its handled really depends a whole lot on your mortgage company. Some are fantastic dealing with clients in bad situations, some are terrible "foreclosure factories". The good news is you're not dealing with one of the nasties, or you wouldn't have gotten the forebearance in the first place. Your best bet is to gather all information about your new earnings, plus have averages of ALL your other essential bills. Really try to stick to "bare essentials" like house pmt, taxes and homeowners if not included in mtg payment, utilities, food, medicine, small stipend for incidentals, maybe even car pmt etc. You can add up any other monthly payments for "unsecured" debt like credit cards/personal loans as well, but mortgage co will most likely be interested in "bare essentials". Then you simply call them, most likely you have a rep who's been dealing with your forebearance. If not, ask for the "hardship" department. Many mtg cos have them, all called different things. Then you're basically going to have to prove to them that you cannot maintain your mortgage payments due to a permanant disability, your monthly award amount, and other bills. Most likely, they'll attempt to "restructure" your loan (this is like internal refinance...usually no or very very few closing costs, and none out of your pocket) into a longer term. I've seen mortgage companies cut interest rates by 6-8% to make payments (especially those that start out with highish rates) affordable for clients, waive months and months of back interest, etc. Most mtg cos really don't want to take your house, if that's any comfort to you. You need to appear to be a "sympathetic client" clearly...make them want to help you out, if you know what I mean. There are a ton of other options, like simply refinancing on your own into a longer term but all of that involves closing costs, and will really only be very beneficial if you've been paying on your mtg for many years. Lots of other ways to go, also.

    I can tell you that I'll be willing to help you in any way possible. If you have any questions, or need any other info, just post to me. Can you tell I'm stuck at home and miss going to work? lol...A lot of the options are really "situation specific"...so anyone working you thru it will need some basic info to advise you properly. Its a rough situation you're in, definitely.

    I'll keep my fingers crossed for you, but easiest way to find out what you're dealing with is to sit down with your financial schtuff and just call the mtg guys and ask.

    Good luck!!
  7. orachel

    orachel New Member

    You might even be able to find someone in a similar situation. If you found a roommate who worked full time, you'd still have the home to yourself all day.
  8. silky17

    silky17 New Member

    Thank you, I definently will keep in touch and probably drive you nuts with my insesive questions. But beleive me it helps to take off a load. Getting the help off here has really been a God send to me as well as others.

    I am hoping that I can get my mortgage co. to help me . The lady who is helping me is very sweet. I like the co. I have, Chase. When I tell people that they have helped me they about crap. They can't beleive I've made it this far. But honestly I give God the credit.I hope I am not offending anyone with that. But that is and has to be my belief.

    I did not know that they would work that hard on my mortgage. I worried a little about my mortgage ins. but it has been in the loan always. But if I am not paying who is?

    Thanks soooo much everyone. Also with getting a roommate doesn't that effect SS too?

    Thanks again,
  9. fivesue

    fivesue New Member


    You will find a way...I know that, and all these suggestions have been great. God won't drop you on your head! (-:

    Personal experience: In 1985 my then husband left me with two teenage boys, a house, a dog, a very small part time job and $800.00 a month. I was able to stretch it to meet our needs. I was also able to go to school (with the help of grants and loans) and get my BA and a teaching credential. My situation was different, the cost of living was lower, but it still was very little money. And yet, I did it with God's help.

    You will, too. I'm sure of that. I'm sure things look a bit bleak, but ways will open up...look at all the good support and advice you got here...

  10. Mareeok

    Mareeok New Member

    Hi Silky, I'm new. I had to quit my job this past May because the pain from my RSD and Fibro was too bad. That ment no disability. My doctor would not allow me to go on disabiulity so I had a long talk with my two adult kids. They told me to just quit and they would help me. So since I am renting I switched all the bills over to my daughter and her hubby who live with me. They had taken over a lot of the bills anyway. I got rid of my car since I go everywhere with my kids so I don't have to drive since it's too painful. Now I don't have to worry about car insurance. The biggest thing is that I am claiming bankruptcy (go to court the 21st). It is indeed an adjustment. I had no choice but it is working for us. The bad credit from bankruptcy will follow me for seven years once it becomes official on the 21st. It's ironic because I always had excellant credit. Oh well, what doesn't kill 'ya will make 'ya stronger.
  11. Sue50

    Sue50 New Member

    One day at a time and a lot of praying is how I do it, I try hard not to worry about the future, Keep the faith, our heavenly father will not let us down.
  12. silky17

    silky17 New Member

    I give my hand to you guys. Sooo many good ideas and suggestions, Believers with me too. I have to tell you it is so hard to have a child that adamantly has his thoughts about religion. He tells me that he isn't going to say that there isn't a higher power but he will NOT admit to believing in God. He literally gets upset about me sending something about God. It kills me. But, I have decided to quit having him see it from my eyes.Maybe one day he will realize that life here on earth is much easier to deal with when you let go and let God.

    His first real love was a christian, they broke up eventually and it all went downhill from there. He was very much in love. Thank God I've never let losing a man take away my belief in God. I would be in for it. Hahahaha

    Battleweary thanks for asking that question. One I have wondered about myself. I just have such a thing about letting go of the very first home I bought on my own. Another blessing from God.If I could only let my son see from my eyes. It is amazing the things that have come to fruition. (I think thats the word).

    I have to tell you guys one thing that happened to me back when I first reached out to God,............
    Here I was with two children , no child support and had moved into a low income apt to try and be able to stay afloat. I worked about 15 - 20 miles away from home and I was just about to pay my last two payments of a car I had bought on payments. I was waiting on someone to come over to do their hair, The knock came at my door and she said......Oh'.. you are home. I said Yes , why do you say that?She says well your car isn't out there. I said what? I ran out to the parking lot to look. It was gone!

    Here I was without a car and no way to get to work. I had to move to an apt (more rent):(, it was right down the street from my work. I then couyld walk. Then someone from church gave me a bike with baskets, I could then go get groceries. Thats not the big thing, maybe a couple weeks later , Someone offered to sell me a car for $2.00. Yep, you heard right 2 bucks. Back then it was about 1992 and the car was an 82'. Only 10 yrs old. In emmaculate shape. I beleive, that it was an act of God. A huge blessing. Taking care of me all the way.

    I am sorry this is so long. Hopefully you read this all the way through. But thanks again, to all of you who take the time to respond to me ranting on. Smile,and keep your heads up. :)

    Silky (Debbie)
  13. Adl123

    Adl123 New Member

    Dear Silky,
    There are different kinds of reverse mortages. I'm not sure about the age requiremets in your state, but I do know that you can arrange to get monthly payments for your lifetime, or you can take out a 20 year reverse mortgage.

    A friend of mine did this, because the repressentative told her that in 20 years her home will have appreciated in value so much that she would have enough money to pay off the first reverse mortgage and then take out another one.

    I don't know how wise this would be, but it is interesting iiformation, I think.

    I really feel for you. Good luck,
  14. mbofov

    mbofov Active Member

    You might want to consider a mobile home. My husband and I split up 2 years ago, sold our home, and I bought an older mobile home in a nice park last June for $31,000. I like having my own place, and also like not being isolated. ALso, there's a nice pool (which I'm not able to use very often). I pay space rent of $335 a month, utilities are extra.

  15. ldbgcoleman

    ldbgcoleman New Member

    Our church helps members such as yourself. Every one has hard times ocasionally. Financial, Emotional ect... If you go to church maybe you can talk with your pastor, or rabbi about this. We have a fund to help people, also we have those in our congregation in every line of work imaginable for advice or support.

    My husband cuts grass every other week for an elderly couple. When my grand mother was ill with lung cancer her church brought over meals every day. Take Care and good luck! Lynn
  16. ldbgcoleman

    ldbgcoleman New Member

    There is a place called modestneeds.org where you can post a request and possibly get help! Good Luck
  17. orachel

    orachel New Member

    for you? If not, I'll see if I can find it and keep it bumped till you get it. Hope all is well!
  18. victoria

    victoria New Member

    The cost of living in Mexico, yes the country, is much cheaper. DH and I plus his elderly parents are moving in about 6 weeks to Mazatlan, on Pacific, we've been planning this for a while. There are probably about 5,000 expats living in this city, English is often spoken as it is a stop-off for cruise ships, people are very friendly. It also has stores like WalMart and American chain restuarants.

    Cost of living is about 1/2 of where we are, and we are currently in one of the cheaper places that still has 'amenities', in fact is listed as one of top 20 places to retire. Well, maybe if you are from a more expensive area, LOL.

    A lady I know, on SSD who was stuck living with relatives, since she doesn't get much $$, listened to what we were doing, took the plunge, and is already living there, and loves it...

    she can now be independent, lives across the street from the beach in a hotel with swimming pool for less than $300/mo., AND can afford meds since cost of RXs are much less than what we pay in US.

    Just a thought.

    all the best,

    [This Message was Edited on 09/17/2005]
  19. LittleBluestem

    LittleBluestem New Member

    The Chronic Fatigue, Fibromyalgia & Chemical Sensitivity Coalition of Chicago has suggestions for surviving on a reduced income. Their web site is www.cfccc.net/
  20. ilovecats94

    ilovecats94 New Member

    I'm so sorry you are going through this. I'm not on SSD, my husband makes a good living and our house is paid off. That is how we make ends meet.

    My heart goes out to all of you who are struggling. Money is the root of all evil, I think.

    I'm 55 and I don't have enough work credits to even get SS when I retire. I'll have to wait for hubby to retire and get part of his. He is 4 years younger than I am.

    Everyone has given you such good advice. I hope that helps you. Just wanted you to know I was thinking about you and praying you will find a solution.