I really like the idea of Mini Money Monday’s when big things happen.
Yesterday, a big thing happened! If you follow us on Instagram (financiallyfrustrated) then you already know what happened. If not, you’re about to!
We bought a used washer and dryer set off Craigslist in December of 2015 when we moved into the house we live in. As always, the seller claimed that they were barely used and came from a vacation property. Whether that was true or not, I’ll never know. All I know is that the washer that I had only had for 6 months started to crap out on me in June 2016. We had paid for them with cash and agreed that they were in part our Christmas gifts to each other. Moving is expensive, and $400 on appliances a month after moving is a big hit.
It started with the water running very slowly into the drum, sometimes taking 30-40 minutes to fill before it could run a cycle. I was very patient with it. It was the first washer we had that was ours, every other one that we had had was owned by whoever owned our rental. It seemed monumental to own our own washer.
We went on vacation late June and when we came back our house sitter mentioned that the washer was broken. I shrugged it off and thought “eh, she’s not broken, she’s just slow.” I quickly changed my mind when I tossed in a load of dirty clothes from our suitcases and had to help fill the drum with pitchers of water from the kitchen sink before it would start, and then fill it again to help it rinse, and ended up with stained clothes. How?! As the laundry started to pile up we started discussing our options. In my mind we had only paid $200 for it and it didn’t seem like it would be worth it to pay someone to come out and look at it, parts to fix it, and take a day off work to do so. I felt like that would easily cost another $200 if we included my lost income. We will never know because I was so convinced that it would that I never looked into it.
I started looking up new washers and was surprised at how much they cost! Then I stumbled across the one that we ended up purchasing which was on sale for half off, included free delivery, and was in the prettiest Merlot color.
When we went in, I noticed the sign above it that said “interest free for 6 months” and thought to myself, “this would be a great way to build credit!” and even though I had the money to purchase it outright, I applied for the store card. I was approved and they charged our new washer and pedestal to the account. They then gave me an option of doing 6 months interest free, or 5% off my purchase. I asked her what 5% was and she said it was roughly $90. The interest was set around 23% so I made the decision to pay the full price and use those 6 months to pay it off and figured I would never have to worry about the interest that I figured would be around $230.
This was the day that we got our new washer. I was so excited! The old dryer was still working perfectly well at that point. You will have to wait for the story of that disaster, I’ll share it when we finally pay the new one off.
I called the customer service line for our card in late December to see when that promotional balance was due and how much it was. To my surprise it was still $563 and it was due January 20th. I didn’t realize until later that I had my payments set to divide between promotional offers instead of just paying on the first one.
I crunched number so many times yesterday that I was starting to get very anxious that I was missing something. Eventually I just said “to heck with it” and I hopped online and paid off our washer. So, 5 days before we would be hit with our interest fee, we now own our first new washer. Now we just have to pay off the dryer before we get hit with that interest. Haha!
Enjoy all victories on this journey, no matter how small they may seem.