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Posted: 5/18/2014 12:57:14 PM EDT
Brief Synopsis:
Laid off Govt Mil Contract job of 4 years in Sept.
Been living in an RV.
Been trying to get back into my field.

Most of us prepare for disasters like bad weather or govt collapse.
I prepared for the most likely scenario, Personal Economic Destruction (PED)!

Thanks to this part of the site, we are still doing OK, not good, but OK.
Information has been our best friend.

When we first suffered this PED we were so lost. Unemployment didn't kick in soon enough. Bills went unpaid.
First thing you have to come to terms with is MINDSET. My wife was paying bills! Why, because she was CONDITIONED too. She was throwing money in the burn barrel rather than save it to feed ourselves and our kid. She didn't know what else to do.

Prioritize! Credit Card Bills... let them ride! Concentrate on those things NECESSARY for SURVIVAL. Electricity, water, fuel, food, auto insurance.
Anything else can ride. If you are in a PED state for more than a month or two past your savings... you are going to have to declare bankruptcy anyway.
Accept that your credit will be trashed.

The very first thing we did was secure housing that we could afford and maintain on unemployment which is $800 a month.
We took the last of our savings and bought an old but mostly functional RV and paid 6 months lot rent in a shady RV park in advance.
No one can take the RV away! It cant be repossessed, it can't be seized during a bankruptcy because its basically worth nothing and its our only residence.

We had a house in PHX, but I had to work 250 miles away at the govt job, so we weren't living there. It got broken into and stuff stolen. We put stuff in storage in our current location and it was burgled too. Accept that stuff is stuff. You are going to lose or sell most of it. Accept.

Make friends that are already in your situation. We allied ourselves with the homeless community in our town. Most of them have serious issues but some are just like us, down on their luck. They taught us what resources they use, churches, shelters, vouchers for food and power, etc. I shared my knowledge of survival and how to improve their camps and what cheap but effective equipment purchases that can make life easier. I teach them about security and keeping a low profile.

I give materially to these friends when I can. I keep a look out at all the thrift stores for gear and equipment and trade it to them for gear or food that we need. I repair tents and coats and backpacks, sharpen knives, perform first aid, etc.

The knowledge and experience of my friends has been an invaluable resource for us. I hope they see us in the same light.

In the Community, we are known as the Motorhome Family.

Somethings to keep in mind for a PED.
Gather resources and know where to get more.
Food banks, churches, charities are there to HELP YOU!
Set your PRIDE aside! Do not let your children suffer because you WON'T accept help.
Are you a Christian? God answers prayers by sending people to help you! Are you going to turn God's help away?

We now have 8 semi reliable people that are constantly looking for resources for us, as we look for resources for them.

Former coworkers have also been very generous. They let me know when a position at my old employer opens up so I can post for it. I'm 0 for 4 right now, but I have Faith and Hope.

We stockpiled food after the layoff notice. We gifted all the furniture from two homes to a family that got burned out here in our current town. We had no use for it, and the bank would have just trashed it or sold it.

We are Surviving better than I thought we would.

The Biggest help has been lodging, a place to park. A kind lady whose father was a vet is letting us stay in the backyard of his old house, rent free. He has since passed but she says he would be honored to know that we were staying there and he was helping us in some way.

This economy has devastated this entire community. I'd say we have about 50% empty retail space on the main street. We now have 6 thrift stores when we only had 1 two years ago. The military base continues to make reductions in the # of civilians they employ.

Its gonna get worse.

If you are in an OK place right now, make plans for when you are not, and save money!

I hope this helped. I just feel like we are all talking about TEOTAWKI but ignoring what could happen by the end of your day at work. Fantasy is great, but I'm stuck in a harsh reality right now.

This is not a veiled call for money or anything like that.Arfcom already helped in Grand Fashion once. If you want to help someone, find a suffering family on your street, there is always at least one, and give food, not money, toys if they got kids, but open them so they cant be returned to buy smokes and liquor. You will know who REALLY needs help PDQ. Be someone's Angel.

I will be paying this forward for the rest of my life, helping others like I was helped. This experience has really opened my eyes.
Link Posted: 5/18/2014 2:08:36 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 5/18/2014 2:11:14 PM EDT by die-tryin]
Honestly, your probably living better now than before..You have income coming in, you sorted out your living arrangements, many people live in trailers and campers, nothing wrong with that. If anything it teaches you to prioritize your belongings and realize how much "Crap" people truly have.

It was good idea that you befriended the less popular locals, but honestly, you wouldnt have done so if you didnt get laid off and I dont know anyone that is living a good life going to hang with the 'bum', its just something I dont seeing people going out of their way to do. While its true, there could be a wealth of info to be had.

Its good that your "helping yourself" , too many people want to sit around and wait for the handouts.
Link Posted: 5/18/2014 3:59:47 PM EDT
Boeing has openings for engineers in New Orleans and Huntsville Al that I know of as well as Remington in Huntsville.
Link Posted: 5/18/2014 4:19:09 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 5/18/2014 4:21:08 PM EDT by sporter]
Come to Indiana...

We have a ton of jobs. If you want more specific info you can PM me.

There are many entry level positions that pay a decent wage and fairly well with overtime worked.

We are a manufacturing based economy out this way.

Why are you "waiting to get back into your field"? You should be actively seeking any employment to support your family.
Link Posted: 5/18/2014 8:17:56 PM EDT
Link Posted: 5/18/2014 8:30:10 PM EDT
I can's say I know what field you are used to working in. I know the Omaha area always seems to have jobs open, has a phenomenal VA, and is very military/veteran friendly. I wouldn't count on the base having openings however as it has recently felt a lot of cuts as well.
Link Posted: 5/18/2014 9:29:37 PM EDT
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Originally Posted By sporter:

Why are you "waiting to get back into your field"? You should be actively seeking any employment to support your family.
View Quote


My field pays 63K a year. Due to injuries over the years, I can't work a manual labor job that pays $8 an hour. My back is too effed up.

I'm about ready to admit its time for a new career, one that stands outside the economy, like Auto Mechanic, or HVAC tech, or Electrician.

Between regular work and side jobs, I could make a good living. Welding scrap steel in weird shapes and selling to liberals seems profitable, too. I'll call it Art!
Link Posted: 5/19/2014 12:03:13 AM EDT
OP, there are a ton of oil field related jobs here in my area.
I can send you a link for another field also. It's just not for everyone.
Gov. job, but very secure.

If you have questions, PM anytime.
Link Posted: 5/19/2014 11:03:24 AM EDT
Damn, what a depressing post. It's like you have given up and conceded to simply surviving instead of thriving.

Probably the best part about your current situation is that your new home is mobile. Fire it up and point the wheels away from what you acknowledge is a dying town.

Opportunity is out there. Still lots of oil field work in North Dakota. The BNSF Railway is having such a difficult time attracting and retaining new employees there that they are offering a $5,000 referral bonus.

I guess thanks for the reminder of what I prepare to avoid.

Link Posted: 5/19/2014 12:00:45 PM EDT
Originally Posted By azcopwannabee:
Most of us prepare for disasters like bad weather or govt collapse.
I prepared for the most likely scenario, Personal Economic Destruction (PED)!
View Quote



When we first suffered this PED we were so lost. Unemployment didn't kick in soon enough. Bills went unpaid.
First thing you have to come to terms with is MINDSET. My wife was paying bills! Why, because she was CONDITIONED too. She was throwing money in the burn barrel rather than save it to feed ourselves and our kid. She didn't know what else to do.
View Quote



These two parts don't seem to add up... If you had prepared for the job loss, why were you not able to pay bills? I realize that 9 months later, you may not be able to continue paying out of savings, but to immediately go into the red because unemployment didn't kick in tells me that you really didn't have any significant savings to speak of.

Also not sure why you didn't move back to Phoenix after the job loss and look for work there. Try to make enough to keep paying the mortgage instead of just giving it up to creditors?
Link Posted: 5/19/2014 12:02:30 PM EDT
OP, sounds like you've learned some valuable lessons. I thing the hardest one is, as you said, stuff is just stuff and in the future, you'll be able to buy more stuff. Taking a couple of steps backwards (e.g., going from owning to renting), while it hurts temporarily, it's better in the long run.

As others have mentioned, the energy sector is a good place to look for work. It's one of the few fields that is actually growing year over year, but you'll have to move.

I was never laid off, but I was under-employed for a long time. I took a step backwards, got some additional on the job training that led to a great job that I have now - it was a slow process. It felt as though things were never going to get better. I still feel like it'll be forever before we can get back to where we were, but this time, we're moving a lot slower, building a much stronger foundation.

Most important thing to remember is "don't ever give up, don't ever give up, don't ever give up".
Link Posted: 5/19/2014 12:27:26 PM EDT
Midland, TX has a lot of jobs. But not a lot of space.
Link Posted: 5/19/2014 3:12:37 PM EDT
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Originally Posted By 155mm:






These two parts don't seem to add up... If you had prepared for the job loss, why were you not able to pay bills? I realize that 9 months later, you may not be able to continue paying out of savings, but to immediately go into the red because unemployment didn't kick in tells me that you really didn't have any significant savings to speak of.

Also not sure why you didn't move back to Phoenix after the job loss and look for work there. Try to make enough to keep paying the mortgage instead of just giving it up to creditors?
View Quote View All Quotes
View All Quotes
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Originally Posted By 155mm:
Originally Posted By azcopwannabee:
Most of us prepare for disasters like bad weather or govt collapse.
I prepared for the most likely scenario, Personal Economic Destruction (PED)!



When we first suffered this PED we were so lost. Unemployment didn't kick in soon enough. Bills went unpaid.
First thing you have to come to terms with is MINDSET. My wife was paying bills! Why, because she was CONDITIONED too. She was throwing money in the burn barrel rather than save it to feed ourselves and our kid. She didn't know what else to do.



These two parts don't seem to add up... If you had prepared for the job loss, why were you not able to pay bills? I realize that 9 months later, you may not be able to continue paying out of savings, but to immediately go into the red because unemployment didn't kick in tells me that you really didn't have any significant savings to speak of.

Also not sure why you didn't move back to Phoenix after the job loss and look for work there. Try to make enough to keep paying the mortgage instead of just giving it up to creditors?


Hard to explain, I compressed time a bit. We used all of our money to BUY the RV and pay lot rent. We had no savings. We were putting $2000 a month on a mortgage that I knew we would never keep, but the wife was still paying. I was making 63K a year.

Why not go to PHX? Because outside of my field, I have no other job skills. I have skills, just not that people would pay for. Hard to explain. PHX has Zero possibilities for my FIELD. ZERO. Here in this town I have the possibility of getting a job in my Field.

I acknowledge a lack of prep on my part. You never really believe its gonna happen to you till both engines go tits up and the nose starts to dip.
Life lesson. Pay myself first, bills second.
Link Posted: 5/19/2014 3:38:19 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 5/19/2014 3:45:04 PM EDT by die-tryin]
So you alone made 63k *not taking into account your wifes pay, had 2k mortgage and no savings.

Maybe learn to live at or below your means and learn to manage money. This is a lil more than "prepping", its a lifestyle of better financial decisions.
Link Posted: 5/19/2014 4:37:10 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 5/19/2014 10:57:49 PM EDT by Martel_C]
Op, might want to look at the railroads for a job. Most of the big carriers are hiring in anticipation for a wave of retirements that is starting to hit. I left a career that I had held onto a little too long, to take a job as a conductor a year ago today. Haven't looked back. You'd be be breaking your old income within a year, with pretty good benefits and railroad retirement.

Eta: see I missed Boomer making the same point.
Link Posted: 5/19/2014 7:03:35 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 5/19/2014 7:05:15 PM EDT by Duggan]
No shortage of $15-20 / hour jobs in plenty of states.

Live life the way you see best, no argument there. We don't see what you see and we don't know the whole story, so no judgement here.

However, were I in your situation, I'd be taking that RV to greener pastures in search of reclaiming a "real" life, not developing my homeless network and mastering the food pantry / soup kitchen hustle in an area that offered no hope for advancement.

Animals, humans included, are capable of incredible resilience and can survive terrible situations, but choosing to stay (and become comfortable) in a terrible situation when an alternative exists seems a questionable choice.

Either way, best of luck.
Link Posted: 6/18/2014 11:40:40 PM EDT
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Originally Posted By die-tryin:
So you alone made 63k *not taking into account your wifes pay, had 2k mortgage and no savings.

Maybe learn to live at or below your means and learn to manage money. This is a lil more than "prepping", its a lifestyle of better financial decisions.
View Quote


My wife is very ill and can't work anymore. 63K bought a whole hell of a lot less in 2013 than it did in 2009.

I admit it, I didn't adequately prepare for a PED of this duration. Its been nearly 9 months now.

Unemployment just ran out for me.

I have been working a few hours here and there doing manual labor for $8 an hour.

I have been writing a book series on kindle.

I do like this simpler life. I feel like I'm no longer part of the rat race. I just walked off the track and threw my middle finger to the crowd!

I can't imagine working at walmart and having some 20 yr old manager bitch me out about SYNERGY and ONENESS without police involvement.

God, I miss my old job.
Link Posted: 6/19/2014 12:01:08 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 6/19/2014 12:08:33 AM EDT by ICEAGE]
Originally Posted By Duggan:
No shortage of $15-20 / hour jobs in plenty of states.

Live life the way you see best, no argument there. We don't see what you see and we don't know the whole story, so no judgement here.

However, were I in your situation, I'd be taking that RV to greener pastures in search of reclaiming a "real" life, not developing my homeless network and mastering the food pantry / soup kitchen hustle in an area that offered no hope for advancement.

Animals, humans included, are capable of incredible resilience and can survive terrible situations, but choosing to stay (and become comfortable) in a terrible situation when an alternative exists seems a questionable choice.

Either way, best of luck.
View Quote

Same here. As my 63 year old uncle would say, "as long as I can walk or talk I can earn a dollar."

Originally Posted By azcopwannabee:
Originally Posted By die-tryin:
So you alone made 63k *not taking into account your wifes pay, had 2k mortgage and no savings.

Maybe learn to live at or below your means and learn to manage money. This is a lil more than "prepping", its a lifestyle of better financial decisions.
View Quote


My wife is very ill and can't work anymore. 63K bought a whole hell of a lot less in 2013 than it did in 2009.

I admit it, I didn't adequately prepare for a PED of this duration. Its been nearly 9 months now.

Unemployment just ran out for me.

I have been working a few hours here and there doing manual labor for $8 an hour.

I have been writing a book series on kindle.

I do like this simpler life. I feel like I'm no longer part of the rat race. I just walked off the track and threw my middle finger to the crowd!

I can't imagine working at walmart and having some 20 yr old manager bitch me out about SYNERGY and ONENESS without police involvement.

God, I miss my old job.
View Quote

Gotta think of your kid though.

Do you want your kid growing up living this lifestyle? Is Collecting unemployment and hustling with homeless folk for the unforeseeable future something you want to do and more importantly something you want to raise your kid doing?


If you wanna stick with the 'simple' lifestyle that's cool. If you search youtube you can find some pretty cool channels about minimalistic living/minimalistic homes. Les Stroud has a pretty good documentaries on off grid living with his family.

In my mind hustling soup kitchens, shelters, etc. is absofreakinglutely unacceptable. I can see if after disaster immediately strikes to keep from going hungry. But after 9 months?

Your comment about working at Walmart and the 20 y/o boss makes it seem like your unwilling to take a job 'below' you, but you are accepting nearly being 'homeless'.


The economy isn't THAT bad. As many posters have stated there are jobs to be had. You've an RV. Pull roots and find work man.


What is your field if you don't mind me asking? You see set that its the only thing you can do for a living. Regardless of skills if you are a vet and have a solid work history you have a leg up on others.
Link Posted: 6/19/2014 4:53:04 AM EDT
First post but I gotta chime in.

Man, BTDT. 2008 crippled my self-employed income streams. In 2 years the rental properties, house, shop and extra vehicles were gone. All sold off at substantial loss. No repos/no bankruptcy/NO MONEY. I went to work operating heavy equipment from experience gained 20 yrs earlier and then the wife was rear-ended by a no insurance illegal and could no longer work due to permanent back injury. Self employed = no unemployment. We never got around to signing up for an EBT card.

By 2011 we were living in a decade old RV I had bought as a toy when things were fat. We gypsied to each excavation job around the state and every day that bulldozer beat my 55+ yo neck and spine to a pulp. Plus, it wasn't all sitting in an air conditioned cab and 'operating'. Plenty of physical labor better suited to the young turks half my age. The wife was feeling useless sitting around all day because everybody gotta feel like they are contributing something to the effort, right? Not a real bright future.......

I got to looking around and the place to be in Texas is the oil fields. Low unemployment (2% in this county), good pay and slackers are few. If you want to work there is a job -PERIOD. The local McD is paying $12/hr and never has enough help; just for an example. We ended up as security contractors at oil field locations. We BOTH work 12 on / 12 off 7 days a week. We live in the RV onsite with ALL utilities furnished, My daily commute is about 20' and we work as much as we want. Work a few months; take a few weeks off and there is always another assignment waiting. We are getting ahead slow but sure.

The key is NO DEBT / NO DEBT / NO DEBT. The PTB can't take your stuff if it is paid for.

I hope I don't come off as preachy but the way I have lived my life --- everybody gotta work. If you spend your whole day scrounging and scamming something for nothing and you plot and plan what the IRS/GOV can or cannot take, you are on the wrong channel.
Link Posted: 6/19/2014 5:53:41 AM EDT
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Originally Posted By STX45:

The key is NO DEBT / NO DEBT / NO DEBT. The PTB can't take your stuff if it is paid for.

View Quote


Quoted to reiterate.

Priorities when you get back on your feet, or for the young guys reading this who are just starting out:

1. Live cheap starting out. If you don't have at least 20% more take-home income than budget needs you are living too expensively. (At 20%, if you save all of your extra income it will take you 2 years to fulfill priority #4 below.)
2. Save $2,000 as a bare-minimum, untouchable emergency fund.
3. Pay off all credit card debt and avoid auto loans with any significant interest.
4. Save a minimum of 6 months of your minimum budget needs. Keep it in an account that is reasonably accessible.
5. Start saving in earnest for your retirement. You are never too young to start doing this, and if you start too late you have frittered-away the tremendous power of compounding interest.
...
87. Buy guns, ammo, BOLs, tactical bro-dozers, whatever. Never use a credit card to do it and don't make a single EOTWAWKI purchase until items 1 through 5 are well in hand.

Link Posted: 6/19/2014 5:57:53 AM EDT
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Originally Posted By Pangea:
Boeing has openings for engineers in New Orleans and Huntsville Al that I know of as well as Remington in Huntsville.
View Quote


+1

http://www.al.com/jobs/

http://www.indeed.com/l-Huntsville,-AL-jobs.html

http://jobs.monster.com/l-huntsville,-al.aspx

Huntsville is still an inexpensive place to live. Affordable rural property is available from 25 minutes to an hour from the city.

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