Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Another Chapter Closed

Today I had to say goodbye to my car. And it broke my heart. This is what my poor baby looks like. A few weeks ago, some crazy old bat pulled out in front of me and I couldn't stop in time. It was 2:00 p.m., dry roads and the sun was shining (rare for this lovely town that I live in). I was headed to the grocery store. Minding my own business. And all the sudden she makes a left turn in front of me - she told the police officer that she "just didn't see me". She received the traffic citation and was remanded to appear in court to have her driving privileges evaluated. She is 88 years old and clearly should not have been on the road. At first I felt sorry for her. And now I just want to scream at her.

I will pay the consequences for her negligence for the next several years. After 2 1/2 weeks of fighting with her insurance company, they are finally in the process of issuing me a settlement. The car is a total loss - the repair bill added up to $7,600. I've decided that having insurance is an absolute joke. They don't make you whole. If that were the case, they would have fixed my car and not issued a salvage title. As it is, I will have to live with the settlement that they have offered and go buy a new car. And I don't want a new car. I want the car of my dreams. The car that was paid for. The car that I took care of so that it would last me for at least 10 years. We are using the money that we were paying for the car to save for a house.

And that leads me to fun fact #2 for 2010. Why do I need to save for a house, you might ask? Why don't I just sell my house in Utah and take the money from my down payment and buy a new house?? I just found out that due to all of the foreclosures in my neighborhood in Utah, I am now upside-down in my house in Utah. And to top that off, we are going to have to lower the rent by $150 - $200 beginning in May because the rental market is saturated right now. The rent we currently receive doesn't cover the mortgage payment.

And that leads to fun fact #3. The real estate agents are predicting that another wave of foreclosures is going to hit the market in the second or third quarter of this year. Which means the house value will drop even further. At this rate, it will be 5-6 years before we can even think about selling the house. Guess we'll be renters, in this town that I despise with all my heart, for the next 5-6 years. And really, let's be honest. At this point, I'm not just throwing money out the window. I'm shoveling it out the window. So let's just add a little more salt to the wound. It's one thing if you make a stupid financial decision yourself. Of course you should pay the consequences for that decision. But it's another thing entirely if you have to sit back and watch others make stupid decisions for you. I hate being stupid. I thought 2010 would definitely have to be better than 2009. So far, I'm not impressed.

At the end of the day, I realize that this is not a crisis. Cory and I are not destitute. We will not starve. It just means that it will take us longer to reach our financial goals. It just means that I have to re-adjust my hopes and dreams. And it might take me a while to be okay with that. Cory tells me to suck it up - this is life.

One funny thing about this whole ordeal. I did have someone from a chiropractic practice here in town call me to tell me that he had heard about the accident and wanted to offer me a free consultation and adjustment, if necessary. Really? I thought only lawyers (sorry Tams) were the ambulance chasers. You learn something new every day.