A testimony from Jill
About a month ago, my husband and I received a letter in the mail that the escrow balance on our rental home was short by $1351. After doing some research, we found that we had been paying taxes only on the land the home was built on and not on the home itself.
We had two months to come up with the money — and we were worried since we just completed an out-of-state move and I recently became a stay-at-home mom.
I started going through our home looking for anything I was willing to sell. I sold purses I no longer used, business supplies and products from a direct sales company I was no longer part of, a coffee table we had no room for, kitchen items I no longer used, a bridesmaid dress from a wedding I was in, and many other items.
After only 1 month, I had enough to pay the bill!
Here is the breakdown of how we saved up enough to pay this bill:
Put items in a garage sale at my parents’ house — $186
Listed items on local Facebook yard sale pages — $762
Carefully reviewed the escrow bill and called the mortgage company. We found that our homeowner’s insurance had been paid twice, and we received a check back from the insurance company for $562.
Not only did we have enough to cover the expenses, but there was money left over!
I am still listing items on the yard sale sites because I have learned that I truly do not need so many of the items I have in my home, and less is more!
Jill is a wife and a stay-at-home mom to her 8-month-old daughter. She loves finding deals, bargain shopping, and working hard to become debt free.
Have you saved up and paid cash for something — large or small? Submit your story for possible publication here.
Kristen Himes says
Just wanted to make a quick comment. We have been sent two letters telling us we were short on our escrow account. We have carefully looked into our bills and escrow accounts and found errors each time which has required numerous phone calls but saves us lots of money. Word to the wise…always always always double and triple check your bills. I know this has been said many times, but it has helped us out tremendously. It’s frustrating, but mistakes are made everyday and I think too many people pay for it without looking into it first!
My moms escrow company just paid her homeowners insurance twice too. She got a $1,000 check in the mail from the insurance company and thought she had been cancelled. Come to find out the escrow company had just been collecting twice the amount of money that needed to be collecting!!
I never have much luck with selling anything but I see a lot of people who do very well especially now with facebook sites for garage sales, items, etc. It’s awesome you were able to get that all together!
I like these stories, especially when the monetary break down of how it was done is included.
Good for you!
Having worked in Loan Servicing, I wonder why they got so uptight about it.
If they sent the refund back to the mortgage company, the remaining balance would have been divided over 12 months and added less than $100 a month to their mortgage payment. Carfully deciding which things to sell than could make you that money every month.
Doing things like this in a panic is a great way to get rid of something you will absolutely need later for way less than you originally spent and then have to spend that and then some to replace it.
Having worked in mortgage, I felt this was the best decision for my family. I did have the option of paying more each month, but chose to pay it in full in order to avoid a higher monthly charge. Nothing was sold in a panic or anything that will be regretted…just things that I planned to get rid of anyways after moving. I know I did the right thing. 🙂
I can’t believe your escrow company paid your home owners insurance twice! How awful! I wonder how many people have had this same thing happen to them and they don’t even notice or really even understand what is happening with their money in escrow.
We stopped escrowing as soon as we had enough equity in our home to avoid it. I love budgeting my own money and making sure my bills are paid on time to the right company rather than depending on the escrow company to do it. Plus I got really tired of the escrow company keeping over 1k in our account for a “safety cushion.” I would rather have that money in my own bank account.
oh I agree. We have an FHA loan and they don’t allow that (apparently low income mortgages equate to irresponsibility?) My mortgage co. said only conventional mortgages can opt out of escrow
You can with an FHA loan as well once you have enough equity
Kim @ Kim Gets Fit says
I’m saving up for Disney vacation next summer…complete with a new summer wardrobe in a much smaller size!
Sarah @The Teacher's Wife says
Awesome! So glad you were able to make it work and even have extra left over. 🙂
If you’re a renter why would you owe an escrow? Escrow is for homeowners.
Julie @Logger's Wife says
I think it is a home that they own and rent out to someone else not a home they themselves rent and live in.
It is a home that is rented out to someone…not one they are living in and paying rent on.
The Frugal Exerciser says
Man, I wish I had something to sell but with a minimalist hubby, I don’t have anything to put in a garage sell. I guess it is the 52 week money challenge for me. Congrats on finding extra money to pay the bill.