For those that know me and my family, I have always been open and honest about the struggles that we have faced. Don't get me wrong, we are blessed beyond compare; we have three beautiful, healthy children, loving family and friends, a roof over our heads and food in our bellies (most days). My husband and I have unfortunately over the last few years made some poor financial decisions that have placed us in some really precarious and difficult predicaments, and every month is a struggle to make it through.
Some context behind this fundraiser; in October 2017 I was retrenched from my job, and it took me almost 9 months to find work again. During this time I claimed my unemployment benefits (max 6 months) and was supported by my incredible family and friends. As luck would have it, within 2 months of me finding work in July 2018, my husband was retrenched, and even though he started his new job in November 2018, those 2 months without his main income coming in was a massive setback in trying to get our lives back on track.
We are fortunate enough to have 2 vehicles which for many households is a luxury, I know. Our family unfortunately requires 2 vehicles in order to adequately function; I drop and collect the children at creché and school every morning and afternoon on my way to and from work, and my husband uses his vehicle to get to and from his work as he works longer hours than me, where he then has the use of a company vehicle to go and see his clients and go to meetings etc. My husband's vehicle is an older vehicle, a 2006 BMW. A BMW, I know... In June 2018 she started acting up, battling to start, very sluggish on acceleration, and so we sent her in for an assessment where we were told that her engine was on the way out, and that we would require a complete engine overhaul which would cost roughly ZAR80,000.00 or USD5,800.00. We were absolutely flabbergasted. Whilst we stay up-to-date with our vehicle services and put tyres when needed, this was something that we just didn't know how to solve. We have no savings, no retirement plans to fall back on; we live month-to-month, and honestly more like day-to-day.
So we continued to drive the vehicle, but I drove her as I drive a shorter distance every day and so there was less stress on the engine. On Monday the 10th of December 2018 she broke down for the final time, and we had her towed through our insurance to the mechanic that we had sent her to for a second opinion less than 2 weeks before her final breakdown. The silver lining with this mechanic was that he said a complete engine rebuild would cost no more than ZAR40,000.00 or USD2,900.00, and that that was the absolute worst case scenario. And so we left Betty the Beamer with Nev to strip and properly diagnose what was causing her issues.
On Tuesday the 15th of January 2019 we received the quote from Nev's Auto; ZAR36,125.55 or USD2,588.78. The issues range from rat damage in the wiring (we live in a semi-rural area) to faulty sensors, to the timing being completely out, the rings needing to be replaced (we knew that since we purchased the vehicle back in October 2014) all of the gaskets and seals having to be replaced and the head/block being skimmed. Oh and then of course the next service is due as well! I received that phone call with absolute despair; I had no idea how we were going to pay for this work.
Nev's Auto has been in business for over 20 years, with close friends of ours using them for the last 15 years. We trust him and his workmanship, and he is RMI approved. He has also said to us that the final price may even be less than what he has quoted us, as he has quoted on the worst case scenario, but that it won't be more than what he's quoted us. He is allowing us 4 months to pay off the invoice, which we simply cannot afford. Nev at the end of the day has a business to run, salaries and suppliers to pay and the fact that he is willing to allow us this payment plan is amazing and so appreciated, but it in all honesty doesn't help us as we can't afford it. Basically payment upfront or no vehicle. Our other concern is that he might start charging storage, also fully within his rights as a business owner as our car has been with him for almost 1.5 months, with only a small payment of ZAR3,000.00 or USD214.98 paid to him at the end of December 2018 (bye-bye Christmas bonus!) His payment policy is a deposit of about ZAR10,000.00 or USD716.61 to get the work completed, and then the balance upon completion. Well as it stands, we can't do the balance of the deposit or the final payment, so we're stuck.
Unfortunately due to our past financial decisions, neither the husband or I qualify for loans or credit cards at present, and whilst we have asked for assistance from various family members, no one is able to loan us the money at present. At the end of the day it is no one's responsibility but ours to get our car back on the road, but without my husband's car he is jeopardising his job of only 3 months and his ability to bring in the main portion of our monthly household income. We are both doing our best to bring in additional after-hours income, as well as raise our 3 children and also work on our marriage. Let's just say that the past few months have been brutal to us as a family, and him not having a vehicle that he is paying a monthly installment on every month is just crushing. We are not in a position to sell the vehicle or trade it in, as the balance outstanding with the bank is too high, and we would not be able to purchase a replacement vehicle.
We as a family would so appreciate any assistance in helping us get our vehicle back on the road. As I said, I ultimately wanted to borrow the money but have't been able to. If someone was able to assist but wanted to be paid back, I will happily make that arrangement with you, with a happy and grateful heart.
Please help us by sharing and donating if you are able to.
If you are willing and able to assist us, you can do so in 1 of 2 ways;
Direct deposit into Nev's Auto (preferred)
Standard Bank SA
Acc no 053032594
Donate via this page through my PayPal account
Thank-you for taking the time to read our plight - peace and love to you and yours x