Tom Ramcigam (magicmarmot) wrote,
Tom Ramcigam

Don't Panic

I really want to be doing something constructive today, but I'm having a hard time concentrating. My mind keeps seeping into contingency plans in case the refi falls through, and nothing good is coming of it. Essentially I need chunks of polykilobucks to pay for things like a new roof, and I have no good way to get them. The 'Sploder is ten years old now, and is starting to have the old-age vehicle symptoms show up (bearing failures, seals getting old, etc.) and I need to be planning for its replacement. Problem is I'm still behind the curve in getting everything paid off because of the goddamn unexpected nature of large chunks of money (emergency dental work, car repairs, the fucking IRS), and I have no good way of raising thousands of dollars without long savings. If I could pack away $200 a month, I'd have $2400 after a year, and that's maybe enough to buy materials for a roof, but certainly not for labor. To be in the actual ballpark, I'd have to sock away $1000 a month, and that's just not feasible on my current income.

Before I even get to the roof, I need to finish the front porch. I can only go so far with the materials that I have-- I still need to buy a chunk of lumber for the roof-- and the windows are a couple grand just by themselves. The money that was saved up for that got more than burned on unplanned/emergency stuff, and I am completely without any reserves at all.

I can't get a roommate until the house is fixed up, or at least not one that will actually pay anything.

Selling the house as-is is a no-go in the market today. Houses in a decent state aren't selling, and I'd have to deep-discount to generate a sale. While I might be able to get a few grand in equity, I'd be stuck without a place to live, and I couldn't afford to buy a new place without being an hour away from the 'Cities, even assuming I could get a loan for a new place. And I really don't want to move.

Interest rates are going up.

So if the refi falls through, I need a second source of income that wouldn't interfere with my primary job. Preferably steady income in that $1000-2000/mo. take-home range. Something I could put away and not touch. Or even something that would pay all in one chunk.

Something that comes to mind would be shooting music videos for bands. Of course, that would mean finding musicians who actually had money, which has stymied me in the past. Plus there's a lot of work involved with actually finding the bands, handling the logistics of the business as well as the shoot itself, and just generally having the energy to handle all of the work.

I tried making a go of it with just the studio a couple of times. One year I ended up netting something like $11k as the total income for the year, which caused a significant problem for years to come since that was way below my expenses for the year. Significant debt from that one, still feeling the repercussions. Later on I tried a sideline job with the Haunted Commercials, and got nothin'-- apparently the folks that run haunted houses are a low-budget lot who can't afford TV commercials (or if they do, they get the production for free from the TV/cable stations, and I can't compete with free).

Of course, I could always buy this place.

Hell, $44,900 seems downright reasonable for a 13-story building in downtown St. Paul. I could even have friends over.

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