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Home > Capital One paid off, then up again

Capital One paid off, then up again

March 4th, 2010 at 06:55 pm

Got the Capital One card paid off on 2/26. I started concentrating on that card 1/13/10, when it had about $1475 on it, so a little more than a month and I got it completely paid off. Through some "creative accounting" I could come up with entire amount from my gas/food checking account, so I didn't have to cheat by using the line of credit.

By creative accounting, I mean that my usual way to do things is to subtract from my checking register on the day I wrote the check so I know what is going out, even if it hasn't cleared yet. Then, on pay day, I sweep whatever is left to the special emphasis item at that time. I had my gasoline bill to pay for due 2/28 for an amount of $353.20. Well, that would have made me in the red if I paid that before pay day. So, I wrote two checks that day, one for $170 for that day and the other for $183.20 for the day after pay day. I had them apply both of them and paid it on time, but the date stamps were straddling the magic day, which cleared up the $98 I needed.

So, once Capital One was at $0, I waited a day and then transferred $1900 from my higher interest Bank of America card to Capital One. Bank transfer fee of 3%, interest of 3.9% for a year.

That went through on the BoA side yesterday, so along with my usual payment to BoA and the $1900, that balance is down to $11,617.75 (originally $14,222.29 on 11/30/09).

Got two bills in the mail today; city bill and natural gas bill. Both were less than I budgeted, by a total of $50, so I applied that to BoA today.

I guess my new philosophy is to not wait until I make a huge payment when the bill is due, but instead to apply each payment when I have the extra money. Cuts out a bit of interest that way, though not much. I can still keep track of what I pay each month extra. Hopefully that has the same emotional impact as sending a big chunk all at once.

My new goals are to get that card down to $8,000 and pay off G'ma by the end of the year. Should be doable.

Don't quite know what the snowball will be as I don't know what the minimum payment on the Capital One card will be now. I'll figure that up when I get a new bill.


When cleaning off my shelves I found a book I had borrowed from a co-worker at my previous job. This is the guy I left on a bit of bad terms, as he know I was going to be laid off the Friday before I was laid off (on Monday) and he wouldn't tell me. Although, the rumor he started did give me a bit of a heads up so I could steel myself for it, but he could have told me, nonetheless.

Anyway, I sent the book but didn't put a note or anything in it. I'm kind of odd about cutting ties with people. Once I cut them out (or move away) I tend to lose track of them pretty quickly. I got a nice card and letter today in the mail from him thanking me for returning the book and updating me a bit on the situation at my old job. They are down to half of the IT staff, and the person who was CIO has had his status changed from reporting to a Vice President (when I was there he was actually pushing to be a VP himself) to reports to a lower VP.

Part of the letter was:
"I have completed the conversion of Bgate to a completely parameter driven system where I don't have to touch the code for additions or changes. The standard template still uses your PGP processing exactly as you wrote it. A few months ago the PGP processing had an error in a piece that is not executed very often. I was surprised because my experience with your code has been that it works every time. When I debugged the problem I found that I (!!) had made a typo when I added it to the standard template. I corrected the typo and it is back to working per your standard of excellence."

Well, that is high praise. I think I wrote that bit of code in 2006, and he hasn't had to make any changes to it since. It is amazing how long stuff like that hangs around when it just works.

By the way, I thank God pretty much every week that I found this new job. I keep thinking about sending a thank you card to my old job for laying me off because I never would have found this perfect fit otherwise.


Got an offer on a tractor we had bought 3 years ago to start our baling business. It had broken down three times in the past few years with >$1500 repairs, the same repair each time. It was obvious that we were missing something, but none of the local mechanics knew what was wrong (can't complain too much...the local mechanics took their payment in Crown Royal and Coors light). We took it to the shop and they found the real problem and said to really fix it, it would cost ~$3500. Dang. We only paid $6000 for it originally. So, instead, they offered us $1500 for it for salvage/parts. DH thought it was a good idea, but wanted to run it past me first, so we talked last night and we both agreed.

This money won't go to the credit card, but to the farm. The swather payment of $12,300 was due this week, and the refund from income taxes was $9300, so we need to make up the difference. The $1500 will go towards that (or some other farm bill).

Baby progress:
The mucinex really worked this past month, though only for one day. Stretchy, lubricative and clear, just what is needed. That was called my "Peak day". I started taking blood tests on "peak plus 3" and will continue every other day until "peak plus 11". This is testing for progesterone levels and estroidals, to see if I need a supplement. We did try for a baby that night, and I should know if I am pregnant in a few weeks. The doctor said if I have not started menstruation 16 days after I ovulate (Peak + 16), take a test. Only on on Peak + 6 right now, so waiting. I am feeling a bit of pressure in my lower abdomen, though, although I know that is no sign. It just feels a little different. Trying not to let my emotions get the better of me here, but I do have hope.

8 Responses to “Capital One paid off, then up again”

  1. baselle Says:

    Here's to hoping that your possible pregnancy is like your PGP code - working well unhindered. Smile

  2. thriftorama Says:

    Wow, all that baby science stuff made my head spin! I say keep track, but go out, have some margaritas, and have fun. Margaritas gave me BOTH of my boys, no lies.

  3. cptacek Says:

    thanks, baselle! Smile
    thriftorama, I know it probably seems like overkill. But I miscarried last June and haven't got pregnant again since, and I probably miscarried because I didn't have enough progesterone. This is the only thing giving me hope. If I hadn't found this system, with a medical explanation as to why my body is doing what it is doing, I would be pretty despondent. And scared to death if I did get pregnant again.

    Please note, though, we certainly aren't waiting for a sign before we fool around Smile We just make sure that when there is a sign, we fool around then too!

  4. Petunia Says:

    "...my experience with your code has been that it works every time. "
    Wow, what a great compliment!

    "Trying not to let my emotions get the better of me here, but I do have hope."
    I will hope for you too!

  5. Helen Says:

    Came across your blog this a.m.
    My husband is laid off and I am trying to get bills paid off. We owe about 12,000 in credit card debt.
    You mention making payments during the month, when you have the extra money, instead of a large payment when the payment is actually due. I have actually thought of doing this but thought it would some how mess with the billing, so that it looked like I was sending a late payment. Please tell me how you do this.. Is it just as simple as it sounds ? Make a payment during the month when I have extra cash ?
    Thanks for any help you can give me.

  6. cptacek Says:

    I just log in and send the money. I haven't done it by regular mail. They will keep track of what you have sent, and how much you have left by the due date. If you pay the amount due and then add another payment later in the same billing cycle, you will just see a bunch of "payment" lines on the next statement. It won't "pay forward", though, so if your minimum payment is $100 and you send $50 today and $75 tomorrow and the due date is next week, it won't lower the minimum payment by $25 the next month.

    I have found with some cards you can't schedule more than one payment at a time. I like to schedule the full amount due a few weeks ahead so I won't forget it, but if I want to send more, I have to unschedule that one, submit the payment I want to pay now, and then reschedule the rest of the payment the next day.

    Also, make sure that you give your payment time to process...some cards don't credit your payment until the next business day, so if it is due on a Sunday, you better submit it before 5:00 on Friday.

  7. cptacek Says:

    Also, Helen, I am sorry to hear that your husband lost his job. If you read back, you'll see that I was laid off for 6 months this year, and it takes a financial and emotional toll, that is for sure!

  8. Jerry Says:

    That was a really nice note from your former colleague, and it has to lead you to be glad that you sent the book back to him. Good luck with the pregnancy efforts! My wife is 7 months along and feeling very uncomfortable at the moment, but it's exciting stuff. (There's no insurance about fertility, of course, but my wife swears by guaifenesin. It's two for two for us.)

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