Hey!! If you’re new to the site or haven’t been here in some time, you may be wondering what this post is. TL;DR – my wife Rachel and I started our marriage together with over $80,000 worth of debt between us. That got old REAL quick, so we turned to Dave Ramsey’s Total Money Makeover for help getting out of it. Though we “started” our journey as a New Year’s Resolution to each other in January 2016, we started really hitting the gas when this blog launched in August 2016, and I’ve been posting our progress ever since. If you missed the last one, you can find it here, or you can see all of them from the Updates link on the home page.
Psssst. Hey. Guess what. It’s another mid-month update. Know what that means? WE PAID OFF OUR NEXT DEBT!!
A full 15 months before it was scheduled to be paid off, we are free from our Discover Loan. Since we don’t have to pay that minimum anymore, we literally just got a $200/month raise! That’s two hundred dollars every single month of our income that we can keep, rather than being sent to some bank for something stupid I did way back when. We don’t have a cutesy picture of how happy we are, but trust me; we’re happy. Let’s have a little look at where we’re at now:
|January 2016 (Start)||May 2017||June 8, 2017|
|Car Loan||$4,685.88||PAID OFF!! 03/17||Paid Off 03/17|
|Discover Loan||$5,511.82||$796.77||PAID OFF!!|
|K Student Loans||$14,058.10||$11,998.83||$12,012.96|
|R Student Loans||$47,879.41||$45,671.85||$45,687.41|
Total change: -767.08
$17,828.36 paid off since 1/1/2016
$7,910.75 paid off in 2017
Where to next? That dang Discover card. You know what I discovered? I don’t either. I bought some tires in May 2016 that could’ve and should have been covered by our emergency fund (I’m not really sure why we decided to use the card for that), but the last real purchase I made was at a bakery on our honeymoon, which was in November 2015. WE’RE STILL PAYING FOR A CINNAMON ROLL I ATE ALMOST TWO YEARS AGO!!!!!! The minimum payment on this has been going down as I’ve been making payments, but the average has been about $100. For every $100 payment I make, about $70 gets eaten up by interest. That’s right, I’ve been paying $30/month on a $4500 balance. That’s when you end up with this:
There’s NO WAY we’re staying with this card for 19 years, or paying three times what we owe just because of interest!! People, minimum payments are just that: the bare minimum that will still technically make a dent on the principle. They’re designed to benefit the issuer, not you! If I can’t talk you out of using credit cards completely, PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE make more than the minimum payments, or even better, pay them off every month!
We still plan on (hope to?) getting this card paid off by the end of the year. However, we’re discussing making a change to our strategy, which I’ll have a post about tomorrow. I can’t tell you how amazing it feels to have almost $350 freed up every month between this loan and the car payment three months ago disappearing. If we still had those, we’d never be able to even think about what we’re proposing. Debt is truly the enemy to building wealth, and days like today get us all fired up to keep attacking it!
P.S. This is post number 50 on Steward and Slave!! If this site motivates you to take control of your own finances, and you think someone else would benefit from it, would you mind sharing it with your friends and family?? And don’t forget to follow my Facebook page and Twitter profile, or subscribe with your email address on the sidebar to make sure you don’t miss any future posts! Thank you all so much for continuing to read and discuss my ramblings here, this community is so awesome 🙂 God bless!