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I got a job!

March 4th, 2011 at 09:37 am

I got the job, I got the job, I got the job!

It's not a permanent solution to my employment issues, but it's certainly better than unemployment and it could lead to something better if it works out.

Here are the details:

It's a startup news website which uses a very different model for reporting on breaking news of the day. I'm going to honor the non-disclosure agreement I have yet to sign by not going into further detail about that.

The good things about it:

1. It's full-time but also flexible if from time to time I need to take time off to do other frelance gigs. he understands that becus he can't pay me the kind of money to keep people there 100% full-time that people may from time to time want to do some other things. That's exactly my situation: i've already agreed to edit an author's book, and I know i'll want to coninue my normal, though widely sporadic freelance real estate copywriting.

2. He's asked me to drive into their small city (about a 50-minute drive 1-way) for 2-3 days next week, and maybe 2 or 3 days the following week, until I get the lay of the land and familiarize myself with how they work and what I'll be doing. But after that, I can work REMOTELY and only drive into the city once a week for the writers' meetings. This is ideal for me; if it weren't for the need for health insurance coverage, this is very much my ideal type of job.

3. The pay is, well, I expected that it wouldn't be a ton of money for a startup. They launch online on Monday, and the weeks immediately following will say a lot about what kind of success they'll see. I'm getting in on the ground floor now; if, in the worst case scenario, they don't do well and the business folds in 6 months, I'll have collected a paycheck as much as possible. If they do well and grow, there's a real chance of getting better pay, more responsiblity and so on.

So he offered me an hourly rate of $20 an hour. I was able to talk him into $25 an hour, but he also said if he pays that, this is the kind of output he'd expect, x number of news briefs written in an hour, or x number per day. They will also reimburse me for the parking garage, which would otherwise cost me $12 a day to keep my car there. (So i guess having me work from home also saves him money, ie, $60 a week.)

I have to say I spent considerably more time writing up the 5 news brief for him in a test assignment he gave me, but hopefully I'll gain a much better idea of exactly the kind of stories they want to focus on and be able to write them up much more quickly. This is a news site and so they need a high volume of new news story briefs every day. Not sure how many other writers there are....

So if I worked f/t, i guess that comes out to $52K a year, sans benefits. I am still seeking a full-time perm job with benefits, becus i must have health insurance, and those jobs would typically pay in the 80s.

So I'd be working for a lot less for him, but given that I'd mostly be working from home, given that I'm a news junkie and that this pays better than unemployment and that this would serve to elongate the time my remaining unemployment funds would last, it certainly seems worthwhile.

It will enable me to more easily pay my current bills and take care of several home improvement projects I have already committed to (paneling 2 closets damaged by leaking water from this winter's ice dams in gutters done by a carpenter i've used before will cost a very reasonable $550) or are considering (vinyl siding estimate from company #1 came in at $17,000).

The only thing it doesn't do is stop the clock from ticking on the remaining time I have to obtain health coverage thru COBRA. I'm good til year's end or maybe a bit longer, not sure.

It also doesn't fix my current dilemma of having health coverage, but not being able to use it, at least, if I don't want to pay 100% of costs. This is due to the fact that my health plan has a $1500 deductible. I've avoided all routine healtcare except for dental and a trip to the neurologist I had to make to renew my meds to avoid having to pay everything out of pocket.

But I would dearly love to get a physical and see my gynecologist and maybe my optometrist and get a colonscopy.

So maybe I'll work here for 3 months, then leave when I find another job with benefits. Or maybe I'll end up staying there for 3 years.....who really knows?

22 Responses to “I got a job!”

  1. creditcardfree Says:

    Congratulations! I'm sure this puts a new spring in your step. Good luck. Smile

  2. Ima saver Says:

    Congratulations, I am soooooo glad to hear the good news!!

  3. LuckyRobin Says:

    Congratulations. I hope it all works out the way you want it to.

  4. My English Castle Says:

    That is good news! On the physical front, do you have a Planned Parenthood near you? They usually operate on a sliding scale--that might work? Your health is important! Great news on the job.

  5. patientsaver Says:

    Thank you all!

    I was able to just now confirm that if I should need to, I can keep the COBRA ($443/mth) until June 2013, which is a year longer than I thought. It's right in the letter I got when I started it. It's 30 months, not 18 months. It's a provision of the CT State Continuation law.

    This will let me keep getting my meds at no cost to me (pharma company picks up my co-pay) but as mentioned above, I'm still avoiding any other medical attention except dental, which i pay out of pocket anyway, and neurology (required to renew meds) due to my high annual deductible.

  6. MonkeyMama Says:

    Are you sure all those doctor's appointments would really cost you that much? I thought all my OB & optometrist appointments were free (preventitive). The bi-annual checkups, anyway. Something I would look into. Either that, or very reasonable cost, to get people in. Planned parenthood is also a good idea.

    Your health is important, regardless.

    Congrats on the job! That is wonderful news!

  7. retire@50 Says:

    Congratulations - I loved working from home the last several years I worked. I was much more productive.

  8. twotinytoes Says:

    Yay, this is great news! Congrats!

  9. Jerry Says:

    Congrats on the new gig, that is terrific and it has to lead you to feel pretty great heading into the weekend! And also excellent news about the COBRA insurance. You should be able to get the checkups you need now, although as monkeymama points out there are other options available. Good luck with the new work!
    Jerry

  10. CB in the City Says:

    WOW! That sounds great! I wish I could work at home! I also wish I earned $52K! (But I do have good benefits)
    Smile This is great news!

  11. Looking Forward Says:

    Good news! Big Grin

  12. patientsaver Says:

    I have looked into what exactly this health plan covers and i think the only free thing would be a mammogram.

    The thing that's really giving me ogida is that, depending on how things go with this new job, I may or may not have my remaining unemployment benefits to fall back on. When Dept of Labor calcuates what your benefits are, they take the highest quarterly average, going back as far as the 5 preceding quarters. (They don't count wages from the quarter in which you filed your claim in.)

    And they DON'T count wages earned from a 1099 job like this one. The only countable income I will have earned in the recent past was the one full quarter i worked at Prudential in 4th quarter of 2010.

    So that means that if i worked at this new job but it didn't work out, either becus i didn't like it or they didn't like me, i'd have until as late as the 1st quarter of 2012 to file with unemployment and get credit for the work i did at Prudential, which was a job where they deuducted taxes and so on from my paycheck.

    In a worst case scenario, if I couldn't find another perm job and had continued to work this job until April 2012, I would NOT be able to collect any unemployment at all because the Prudential job in 4th quarter 2010 would then be beyond the timeframe that DOL uses to determine benefits.

    Not that I'm PLANNING to go back to unemployment but having lived hand to mouth for so long, it's really nice knowing i have a safety net of sorts of this new gig doesn't work out.

    However, I would think I would know in the 1st 3 months whether the new job is going to work and whether he's happy with me and anyway, unemployment is not going to last forever in either case. It's just nice knowing I have a backup, but what it comes down to is, the "clock" is still ticking and I still need to find a perm job with benefits asap.

  13. NJDebbie Says:

    I'm so happy for you!

  14. PNW Mom Says:

    Congratulations!

  15. Petunia 100 Says:

    What wonderful news! Congratulations!! Smile

  16. FrugalTexan75 Says:

    This is fantastic news!

  17. Analise Says:

    Congratulations on the new job! You will do it well, no doubt.

  18. rob62521 Says:

    Way to go! Congratulations!

  19. Apprentice Bliss Hunter Says:

    Congratulations !!

  20. HelpMeFriend Says:

    It always feels good to get a job. And you talked him into $25 an hour. Good Job!!

  21. Dido Says:

    Congrats on the new job...hoping it works out well until more steady work can be found. (Hmmm this sounds like "Patch"....we have those in my area, but you are under a nondisclosure agreement so I won't ask.) BTW you might look into what the rates are for insurance if you ended up going all the way through COBRA and onto the guaranteed issue option...that's what I ended up doing. I was paying 605/month on my COBRA in Jan/Feb after the subsidy ran out. For March I am on the Guaranteed Issue and paying 389.50/month....now that's for a 1500 rather than a 500 deductible, but I was still pleased to find it so much lower. And I may still apply for the medically underwritten option, which won't pay for pre-existing conditions for the first year and involves their contacting your doctors and your filling out a long questionnaire...but those rates would be between $219 and $289/month depending on the deductible I chose. So don't assume that if you run through COBRA your rates will remain as high...they could decrease. YMMV, of course. Good luck with the new job!

  22. patientsaver Says:

    No, it's not Patch. Patch focuses on micro-local news, which I have always thought was a true nice not covered by large news outlets.

    the one i work for concentrates on national news.
    The more i talk to other people grappling with health insurance issues, the more i realize that $443/month is really not too bad,comparatively speaking (though bad enough as far as i'm concerned).

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