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 these monthly progress updates 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.
Here in Kansas City, we have sort of an unofficial saying among our baseball fans: “It’s a rebuilding year.” For those of you that don’t follow the Royals, they won the World Series in 1985 after being a serious contender for years and years before. After the win, they stayed among the top rankings for a few years before the stars realigned and they… well… tanked. When I was growing up, you didn’t go to a Royals game to see them win, you went because it was a social thing to do. In conversations, asking if the Royals had won any game was usually met with a hearty laugh and a knowing smile. But through it all, the diehard fans maintained that every season was a “rebuilding year;” one that was disappointing, but necessary to get all the pieces in place to return to the spotlight. And, eventually, that spotlight did come back to Kauffman stadium toward the middle of this decade, with the Royals returning to the World Series in 2014 and again– with a win on the first full day of Rachel’s and my marriage, no less– in 2015. The years that have followed our crazy celebration have become more “rebuilding” years. Let’s hope it doesn’t take another 30 years, but maybe there’s something to that theory.
This year has felt like somewhat of a rebuilding year for our debt snowball. We’re not really making any sort of spectacular progress, though we’re not losing any ground, either. We’re just sort of… here. Every month when I write this post, I wish I had something for you, the reader, to get excited about– another loan paid off, a winning lottery ticket we found in the parking lot. Something to keep you from going, “Eh, neat,” and closing the browser tab. But I don’t; not this month, anyway. Rachel and I have been making good strides in our new jobs, which will hopefully lead to more wowing down the road, but for now, we’re just biding our time, trusting our God, and dealing with life as it comes. I promised at the outset of this little project that I’d be honest, and sometimes, money is honestly boring. Paying an amount of debt like we have on a salary like we make isn’t fun, it isn’t exciting. But it can be done. Eventually. I hope.
|January 2016 (Start)||April 2018||May 2018|
|Car Loan||$4,685.88||PAID OFF!! 03/17||—|
|Discover Loan||$5,511.82||PAID OFF!! 06/17||—|
|Discover Card||$7,939.49||PAID OFF!! 10/17||—|
|K Student Loans||$14,058.10||$10,463.09||$10,319.60|
|R Student Loans||$47,879.41||$41,735.78||$41,460.47|
|Loan 5||PAID OFF!! 12/17||—|
$28,294.63 paid off since 1/1/2016
– $9,957.61 paid off in 2016
– $16,469.25 paid off in 2017
– $1,906.07 paid off in 2018
– $418.80 paid off this month
The Road Ahead
We’ll be taking a literal road trip in the middle of this month for a family event. A lot of expense questions are still up in the air, like we have no idea how much food will cost or where we’ll get it. As a result, we’ve been hitting “pause” on the snowball so we can save a little extra for the trip. That’ll either give us a boost at the end of the month (if we don’t use all the savings), or give us some experienced wisdom for the next time we plan a trip like this (if we do). We’ll see!