The PLAN (& thanks, Peter)

DSC_0325October 18, 2017

“Do you have a plan?”

“Yes, of course.”

[Insert blank stare]

As previously stated, Daniel and I do have a plan. Admittedly, there are parts that we will not be able to figure out until we get to New York, but we have strategies in getting us there.

Making a move from Georgia to New York is a BIG move, especially with no job prospects. Luckily, with our NY plans out in the open now, we have had a lot of people share with us their own personal stories of making similar changes in life as well as share contact information of someone who has done the same thing. Daniel and I have talked with many great resources (thank you all) and so we have been able to add more meat to the plan.

Warning: You’re about to get a lot of details…

Here is the PLAN:

To start, let’s go back to Daniel’s main “To-Do” items to get to New York:

  • Get out of credit card debt completely
  • Build up our Savings
  • [Find jobs]

The third bullet point, while important, is not going to stop our move to NY in 2018. 

Let’s talk credit card debt – it sucks. Having credit card debt leads to a couple of different struggles:

  • Paying off credit card debt with NO JOB is not a good idea

We will have a good bit of cash in hand to get us started, but this cash is not meant to cover our CC debt while trying to start a new life in NY. We are going to have to save as much as possible for storage fees, costs to move, and all the initial fees when we finally find an apartment.

  • Credit card debt can sometimes equal poor credit

Our credit became “good” credit just recently; we have been decently vigilant in paying off high-balance CCs since June of this year. Not only is having CC debt exhausting, but having bad credit on top of that would severely damage our chances of getting an apartment. Bad (or no) credit could have forced us to pay additional fees and deposits just for approval purposes. I currently work in property management and, trust me, your credit plays a big role in renting.

Bettering our credit became my main goal. How did we suddenly switch gears and focus on credit card debt all of a sudden?

After reevaluating our budget and costs, Daniel and I were able to cut some luxuries out of our life. We canceled both of our Orangetheory Fitness memberships (which was heartbreaking).

[Quick Note: Orangetheory Fitness is worth every penny. I highly suggest it to those that need a good push to work out.]

We also downgraded our pest control package. We still have pest control services, but we don’t get additional services that sounded so beautiful to us when we became first-time home buyers. However, it’s Georgia. If the winter was not cold enough to kill the bugs, no use in paying someone to try to do overtime bug-killing.

Other than that, Daniel and I have been more focused on budgeting (well, trying to get better at budgeting) and spending more time looking at our money.

I have been able to determine how much from each paycheck needs to go towards CC debt; we should be 100%-free from credit card debt prior to leaving for New York!

Now to Savings! Erm… we’re still working on it. Our main focus has been taking care of the CC debt, but we have not totally forgotten about increasing our Savings.

Daniel, my hero, has a portion of his paycheck that goes directly into Savings. This is a BIG DEAL. This is an immensely helpful tool in building Savings. We now make it a point to NEVER pull money from our Savings account.

After we pay our bills and budget our monies before the next paycheck, Daniel and I try to figure out if there is any additional amount we can add into Savings. Whether it’s $20 or $100 or $300, we do the most that we can so that we can still get to the next paycheck comfortably. We could be putting ourselves on a much tighter budget, but honestly, that’s difficult for us. I enjoy going to the movies and we both enjoy having breakfast/dinner out. We are still living our lives but we are doing a good job on our “To-Do” items.

Daniel’s To-Do items are extremely important. If you are planning a big costly life change, look at credit card debt and your current Savings balance. 

Plus, if you’re someone like me who is dealing with high-functioning anxiety, making life simpler – in any way – helps in a big transition like this.

Our next steps:

  • Prep the house for sale
  • Sell too-big furniture that may be unnecessary for city life and a city apartment (plus make more money!)
  • Arrange storage (I think we’re going with Storage Pods)
  • House will go on the market mid-January 2018 (money)
  • Apply for jobs with Uncle Peter’s NY address PRIOR to leaving (getting a head-start)
  • Sell my Volkswagen Beetle (I’ll miss that car, but MONEY)

^ Easy stuff. All of the above points, while stressful, will be the easiest part of all of this. The hard part comes when we get to NY and we start the job search.

When in Katonah, NY:

Firstly, thank you to our wonderful Uncle Peter. Peter’s offer for us to invade his home for two months is a TREMENDOUS help. If Peter had not offered his home, I don’t think Daniel and I would have been able to make this big move for a couple of more years. When Daniel had finally asked Peter the big question, after spending a lot of time on our own trying to figure out the move to NY, I had never been so stressed. A “No” would have meant that we would need more time to acquire the funds to make a move with no job prospects and no place to live. This also could have been dangerous for us, making a transition with no where to go. While I am the same anxious, fearful planner, I was also anxious and determined to get to NY in 2018.

But he said yes! This detail in all of our planning makes the transition that much more comfortable. We have a safe place to be and a convenient location to search for jobs and an apartment. (Katonah is a 1-hour train ride from the city)

Thank you, Peter, for helping us. We owe you so much. More specifically, thank you for helping me change my life. Thank you for the opportunity for a girl to chase her dream.

  • Day 1 in Katonah: Unpack a bit, unwind, and cry in fetal position as the stress washes over me
  • Day 2: Apply for jobs
  • Month 1: lock down a job

We are giving ourselves a max of two months in Peter’s home. Our first month will be focused on finding and locking down a job. Hopefully, if we are able to accomplish this goal, the next step would be:

  • Find an apartment

If we get closer to Month 2 with no ideal-job prospects, Daniel and I will apply for any type of position.

Note: I will explain my specific goal to becoming a writer in the next post.

In finding an apartment, this part of the plan does not scare me. NY has ample apartment availability. Again, we’re going with a good amount of cash in hand, so we will feel comfortable to pay the initial fees and any additional monies.

And here we are. What I love most about our plan is that we’re starting smart. We are moving to New York the smartest and best way possible – debt-free, money in the bank, and a confirmed place to live so we can search for jobs and an apartment while in NY.

Yes, making the move is still unnerving. Nothing is set in stone.

I think it helps that I am extremely lucky in this situation. My husband is a great partner for this new adventure. Our house is in a great area and the sale from it will provide us monies to start a new life. We have Uncle Peter housing us so we can have a comfortable transition from GA to NY.

I did spend time reading articles and other blogs of women who made the move to NY. I read about how single women couch-surfed until they found jobs. There were a lot of similar experiences of people who took months to find a job. I even discovered those that made the trek to NY, but then returned home within less than a year.

Coming back to Georgia would not be considered a failure. I just want to try something new. I want to try making a silly dream come true. Trying is not failure.

I will be tenacious in all of my endeavors. That is a promise.

If you have suggestions or ideas, I would love to hear from you. Thanks again for reading. Please continue to follow my blog!






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