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Old 02-15-2013, 08:37 PM   #1
disykat
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Any other families planning for a furlough?

This is not a political thread, just a budget planning thread. DH and I are having conversations at our house about what kind of cuts we're going to make if the furlough happens.

We're fortunate in that our mortgage is paid off, so bills won't really be an issue. However, all that money was being used to put our kids through college so we'd like to keep meeting their expenses without incurring debt for them or us. We'd also like to keep our emergency fund pretty intact, so we'll definitely be feeling the squeeze. Both boys are on notice to try to increase their hours at work if the furlough happens.

So far it looks like it'll be vacation, my gym membership, and eating out. I think I'll either let my hair go natural or maybe highlight at home. I'm also thinking about figuring out if I can groom my dog myself. We're already pretty frugal with things like entertainment, clothing purchases, etc. so finding things to cut feels tight. We've already decided not to cut our internet package or phone packages, since that is our major way of communicating with the boys.

We had planned on giving our old couch to our older son when he moves off campus and getting a new one. We were also planning to get a new bed and move ours into his soon to be empty room. Those purchases will be postponed. We have an inflatable bed that can go in his room when he visits!

I don't work in the summer so I was thinking about a summer job, but realistically that would be hard to come by. I think the hardest thing will be keeping DH out of home depot since he's planning on doing a bunch of projects if he has a day off every week!



What are you talking about doing at your house?
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Old 02-15-2013, 09:13 PM   #2
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We're watching to see what happens ourselves. DH says this has been quite the topic at work. I've been following the issue since it started a couple of years ago and preparing as much as I could if it happened.

I think we'll be okay. I just paid off the last of DD's college before her graduation (with no debt!) this May. DS's scholarship is taking care of everything for him for four years. I just refinanced the mortgage and sliced off some years and interest. I've been couponing and stockpiling like mad. I have some of my seeds for the garden started. I'll continue to squirrel money away and trim expenses as much as possible.

No major expenses are planned until we see how it all shakes out. Hopefully, we'll know soon.
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Old 02-15-2013, 09:38 PM   #3
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So far, in the Dept of Transportation, I am hearing 22 days through till the end of the fiscal year (Sept 30).

What are you hearing?

---Paul in Southern NJ
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Old 02-15-2013, 10:01 PM   #4
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One day a week for 6 months is what I'd heard - sounds like it's really more like 5 months. (that makes me feel better!) I have a pretty good idea of exactly how many dollars we'll need to cut from our budget and/or take from savings. We feel fortunate to have steady employment, it's just a matter of making a plan for some big time belt tightening in the short term if it really happens.
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Old 02-16-2013, 12:23 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by psimon
So far, in the Dept of Transportation, I am hearing 22 days through till the end of the fiscal year (Sept 30).

What are you hearing?

---Paul in Southern NJ
Get this. One of my neighbors is an air traffic controller. She has been told starting march 1 up to 11 days in 2013. Only problem is ohare is running 6 day weeks with almost mandatory ot. They have been told all ot will stop and planes will be backing up.

Gotta love it
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Old 02-16-2013, 05:58 AM   #6
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My husband will be considered "essential" so he'll still have to go in, just with no pay. We'll be fine, though. We have plenty in savings and extra each pay check. We can live with a smaller paycheck for a while without hurting. But it would be nice if they pay us back retroactively like they have in the past. I understand why they won't announce that ahead of time, though. Living so close to DC, most of my neighbor's and friend's are with the gov't so it will be interesting to see how this area is affected.
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Old 02-16-2013, 06:10 AM   #7
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we aren't gov employees but i face a more permanent 'furlough'. My dh is a bit older and he will be looking toward retirement in a few years. I need to get our ducks in order. I will be concentrating on paying all our debts off over the next 5 years, including our mortgage.

he prolly will never really stop working but will slow down quite a bit...i need to be prepared coz i wanna keep traveling.
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Old 02-16-2013, 07:44 AM   #8
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I don't work directly for the Fed govt so o furloughs, but I my job is paid for by a Federal grant which will get cut. Being one of the most recent hires, I am assuming I will be one of the first employees cut. I have started looking for a new job. What I have not heard from the higher ups is if our funding will be cut immediately or if the cuts will start with the next grant year.

My income pays for "extras" and is helping us to pay down our debt faster, so we will be okay for a while without it. We will have to cut back on how much extra we pay off each month and go back to really pinching pennies.
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Old 02-16-2013, 07:52 AM   #9
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Originally Posted by psimon View Post
So far, in the Dept of Transportation, I am hearing 22 days through till the end of the fiscal year (Sept 30).

What are you hearing?

---Paul in Southern NJ
That's what a lot of agencies are saying. I'm a Fed employee but we may end up not being furloughed as they are making other cuts. DH is a Fed gov contractor and they're not sure what will happen. I had already figured if we both were furloughed for 22 work days over end of Apr-Sep, then we could pay all the bills, but have no extra at all. He makes twice what I do (I work 32 hours/week). If I was furloughed, I would take a 25% hit while full timers would take a 20% hit. Not gonna say "it's not fair" because I hate when that's said, but there needs to be pro rated for part timers just as they do for everything else. Our fall vacation would go if we both took the hit. Not only haven't we had raises for more than two years, now Congress and the President are using us in their inability to do their jobs. A furlough in the area I live in would trickle down and hurt much more than just fed employees. We had planned to have some rooms painted this year as well as do a few other improvements to our house. THose will not happen if the furloughs do.
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Old 02-16-2013, 08:19 AM   #10
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Originally Posted by bdcp View Post
That's what a lot of agencies are saying. I'm a Fed employee but we may end up not being furloughed as they are making other cuts. DH is a Fed gov contractor and they're not sure what will happen. I had already figured if we both were furloughed for 22 work days over end of Apr-Sep, then we could pay all the bills, but have no extra at all. He makes twice what I do (I work 32 hours/week). If I was furloughed, I would take a 25% hit while full timers would take a 20% hit. Not gonna say "it's not fair" because I hate when that's said, but there needs to be pro rated for part timers just as they do for everything else. Our fall vacation would go if we both took the hit. Not only haven't we had raises for more than two years, now Congress and the President are using us in their inability to do their jobs. A furlough in the area I live in would trickle down and hurt much more than just fed employees. We had planned to have some rooms painted this year as well as do a few other improvements to our house. THose will not happen if the furloughs do.
So far, we have not been allowed to fund or contractors past March 27. Right now, they will be on the street come March 28 unless they lift the restriction!

Washington (all of them) really love the game of poker. It's just that WE are the losers.

---Paul in Southern NJ
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Old 02-16-2013, 08:21 AM   #11
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Originally Posted by akcire View Post
Get this. One of my neighbors is an air traffic controller. She has been told starting march 1 up to 11 days in 2013. Only problem is ohare is running 6 day weeks with almost mandatory ot. They have been told all ot will stop and planes will be backing up.

Gotta love it
Interesting.....we had been told controllers are considered 'essential' and indispensable, consequently the rest of the FAA has to pick up their share as well!

---Paul in Southern NJ
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Old 02-16-2013, 08:23 AM   #12
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DH works for the government. No one is talking cuts at his agency because hey have a different funding source. However, my friends, neighbors (pretty much everyone depends on Government money around the DC area) are very worried.
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Old 02-16-2013, 09:38 AM   #13
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I work for the IRS. They aren't talking furloughs yet. Mainly because I don't think they would dare furlough us during the filing season (now until early June). I'm worried about June through September.

My daughter is an air traffic controller, but at a much smaller airport than O'Hare. I think they're talking about a one day a week furlough for 22 weeks.

Of course, when all this furlough is over with in October, we'll have so much work to catch up on that they probably won't let us take our (already paid for) Disney Halloween vacation.
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Old 02-16-2013, 09:39 AM   #14
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I don't work for the government, but, we've been having furloughs for the past 5 years. We still have them this year also. We have to take 2 weeks before June and 1 week between June and December. It's kind of getting old, I wonder how much longer we'll have to do this.

I try and take them at a time of the month when we have less bills. This time I have 2 planned for the months when we have 3 paydays - March and August. We do get unemployment for 2 of the weeks, but 1 week is unpaid. Luckily DH is working lots of overtime. We have cut back a lot the last 5 years!
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Old 02-16-2013, 09:44 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by psimon

So far, we have not been allowed to fund or contractors past March 27. Right now, they will be on the street come March 28 unless they lift the restriction!

Washington (all of them) really love the game of poker. It's just that WE are the losers.

---Paul in Southern NJ
Yep on the past she said they have always been considered essential due to safety. This time they are being told planes will slow down and back up until its safe to fly.

She only mentioned it to my husband due to his travel schedule. If it happens and my husband and other business travelers are sitting on the Tarmac for every flight it will not be pretty. I know exactly how he will put to use the wasted time, and I can tell you I'd hate to be a staffer at a congressional office. He can churn out letters faster than anyone I know.

The other thing is places less than 8-10 hours he will just drive. Lets talk about inefficiency, but if it is 2 hours to fly with an unknown atc delay he might as well drive.
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