Tuesday, February 7, 2012

I'm Sorry, Did You Say I Have To Pay Taxes On My Taxes? Americredit - A Miserable Auto Loan Company

I got 4 of these 1099 forms from the State of Arizona today.  They're attempting to tell me that my tax refunds that I received last year from previous years is - taxable income.

Now let me get this straight.  I file my TAX returns to the State of Arizona.  I get refunds.  The next year, during tax season, I get 1099's saying that that is "income".  Yes, it's income THAT HAS ALREADY BEEN TAXED and is the return on the OVERPAID taxes!  

Whatever.

Americredit. A miserable company, to say the least.  I washed my hands of them after the head-on collision that wasn't my fault and the truck was destroyed.  A VERY long story I won't bother going into here, but they "repossessed" the destroyed truck - in the impound yard since it had been towed there after the accident - and "gave" it to the insurance company.  I had had numerous conversations with them about getting the truck out of the yard and into my driveway, where I would strip the engine and transmission out of it and that would repay the $1,500.00 I had left owing on it.  The original loan was for $17,500.  I had paid $12,000 on it in payments and the insurance company gave them 10 grand on it.

No sympathy from them and didn't care about the truck.  Hindsight being 20-20, I should have just paid the storage fees for the truck and had it towed to my driveway - behind my gate.  I was intent on simply the remaining usable parts on the truck and that would have paid off the debt.

Instead, they played some mind games with me that infuriated me and had me on the phone for a long, long time with what eventually got to corporate headquarters.  A "man" in Dallas, Texas - some facility there that houses these people for their business - had me wanting to punch his lights out.  It is ever-so-loving easy to talk trash and speak insults over a phone, it is never that easy in-person.

Whatever the case, I refused to pay the amount "owing" after they refused to do anything for me.  They didn't care, neither did I.  When they let the truck go to the insurance company, who called me to inform me that they had been "given" the truck, that was the end of it for me.  I have left a lot out here, I would have to write a novel on the situation that unfolded and quite frankly, I don't want to stir all that up within me again.

Today was their final blow.  I got a letter from Americredit today.  I haven't spoken to them since maybe a few months after that accident and the phone calls transpired. They "forgave" the debt.  Great?  Not hardly.  They reported it as income or whatever to the IRS and sent  me a 1099. In other words, I have to pay taxes on that "forgiven" debt.  I am not going to report it.  The IRS can come back and audit me. Americredit is going to have to prove that the amount they stated is the amount that was "forgiven".  The original amount "forgiven" was about $1,499.  The amount they are claiming is almost 3 grand.

I contested it from the beginning.  I contested it on my credit report.  I have never not contested it simply because of the extreme circumstances behind all of it.

I don't expect to get a tax refund this year, in case anyone is wondering.  I will file my taxes, but that s*** isn't going on there and when the IRS comes back and demands payment or modifies the return, I am going to fire right back at them.  Well, not really fire at them, but inform them of the situation that actually is occurring.  Americredit cannot make false claims and they are going to have to provide proof.

The only plus side to this?  This nightmare will go away on my credit report.  That's right, Americredit has been reporting since August of 2005 that I am "late" on my payment.  Well, actually,  no payment has been received.  It has dinged my credit for almost 7 years now.  The legal limit that they could "sue" me in court is 6 years in Arizona. Yeah, that passed a while back.  My credit score, after this is reported to the big 3 reporting agencies and after 3 or more months have passed - will rise up quickly.  If I have to end up paying the IRS, then I will pay it.  This is the one case where I would rather pay the IRS.

Whatever.  It's a chapter in the book of my life that I have been wanting to have closed for some time now, but I absolutely REFUSED to give Americredit ANYTHING.  You can't refuse the IRS - they will eventually just take it from you and then you will REALLY be hurting if what they take is your lifeblood.

There were several companies that picked up this debt, including one that claims a 99% collection rate.  I went to their website after they contacted me on the phone and I basically told them to but off.  I thought, not in this case.  I figure whatever I was going to get back this year from the IRS will just pay this off and if I have to write them a check, so beit.

Better to have this monkey off my back than to attempt to let it go forever.

Sissoo Trees Revisited

I was delivering one, 24 inch diameter stick of pipe this morning to what turned out to be a nursery  - a tree nursery at that.  Imagine my delight - I love trees and looking at those 25 foot tall pine trees in boxes, ready to be transported wherever - amazing.  I mean there were a LOT of those trees sitting there.

I was talking with the guy that was receiving the pipe - he basically runs this nursery, doesn't own it but he is responsible for the daily operations.  He said the economic downturn? At one point those trees would have been worth upwards of 4k, now I could snag one for a grand.  That quickly turned that switch to the off position for me, I am not spending $1,000 on a tree plus the cost to have it planted in the ground.

We got on the topic of Sissoo trees and he was all over that.  Amazing, wonderful tree, he exclaimed.  I said I had at least 20 of them growing on my property - probably more like 30 but whatever - and saw that they grow up to 40 feet.  Oh nooooo, he states, they will grow MUCH taller than that.  He stated that about 5 years ago, the Sissoo was imported to this area and became instantly popular.  He also stated that in about 10 years, those trees were going to be mammoths.  No-one has seen any of them around here that big, yet, he continued, because they are new to the Phoenix area.

Ohhhhh.  "Expect those trees in your yard to eventually grow to 80 or 90 feet tall".  What?!!!  "Water them well and often and they will grow enormous". Hmmm, well that got me searching.  One source states they can grow up to 82 feet, but usually don't get that big.  Yes, the pics that I have seen show them around 40 to 50 feet.  Even that is a pretty good sized tree and imagine having 30 of them growing on one, single property!

The wood is apparently valuable as well.  It is prized for, supposedly anyway, making furniture with.

The idea that this property will one day have these huge, giant trees all over - and I do mean all over, I planted them on both side, the front and rear of the property - and I won't own the property yet I did ALL of that work to get them and get them planted?  Doesn't set well with me.  I spent a lot of time, effort and money getting all of this in on my property.  Some of those Sissoos are around the 16/17 foot tall range right now. Others much shorter but growing.

Interesting conversation on a dirt road, out in the boonies in Chandler, AZ today.

Tuesday 2/7/2012

I'm really, kinda, hating....this presidential run from both side of the aisle. I really don't want to hear any more of it and I am tuning it out for now.  I haven't even decided who I want to vote for in the November election - I don't like ANY of the candidates that have any chance of winning right now.  The latest news was Obama's reversal in his stance on "super PACs" - the man is a hypocrite and apparently two-faced.

Bash others for doing something but if it helps him out, then commit the same action regardless. I'll write-in vote for Donald Duck before I vote for Obama.

Anyway.  I have partially decided on a course of action.  If I am staying in this house - and will be stuck in it for a long time if that is my decision versus short-sell, I am definitely going to save up enough money to build a small casita/attached structure - more of a "in-laws suite".  It would be completely self-sufficient - meaning the occupants would never have to come into my house for anything.  This is all about retirement and finding ways to dump money into an account designed specifically for that alone.

The unit could fetch $500 per month, I am guessing and pay for itself in less than a year.  It would have it's own sub-meter for electricity - or perhaps just install a regular meter for it altogether and do M-Power on it.  The occupants would have to "fill" a card at a machine to get electricity.  Water would have a meter on it running in there - but they would pay me directly for water bills - or not - I don't know how much water one or a couple of people living in a small place would use in a month, probably not enough to have to worry about it.

That, at the moment, will stand as Plan B, since I haven't yet made up my mind about short-selling the place.  And likely won't for a while.  I am still trying to determine what kind of place I could rent after leaving this property. Another thought would be to simply save up enough money for a enough of a down payment and get a second house.  But that would take a long time to save up, say, 20k.  Which is where a casita would come in handy.  At $6,000 per year, I could rack up 20 grand relatively quickly.   Meaning, taking all the money from that casita earnings and stuffing it into a savings account.

I have so many ideas running around in my head, no idea what to do here.

Oh, I do have on great idea: time to go to work : )

G'day.

ben

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