Thursday, June 26, 2014

A turning point

Three and a half years into this blog and we've reached a milestone: We are finally able to throw snowballs at this stupid debt!

Prior to this, the minimums have consumed all of our income. When we first started this, we didn't really even have enough to cover the minimums. We were candidates for bankruptcy. We couldn't keep our heads above water.

But thanks to putting several cards into Bank Liquidation Programs, with lower interest rates and a set monthly payment for five years, we kept up. Early on, that sometimes meant robbing Peter to pay Paul - using a balance transfer from one card to cover the payment on the next.

But here we are, several years later and tens of thousands less in debt, and we are finally seeing real progress. I attribute it to a combination of factors: I have picked up some small freelance jobs that are bringing in just enough to make a difference; and as balances have dropped, so have the amount of interest we are paying and the minimums due. The balances of our accounts were all so insanely high to begin with that we have only been able to pay off one account in full in all this time.

I think we can count on at least an extra $300 a month to throw at the debt on top of the minimums. The current target is the American Express card, because it is not in a BLP and the interest rate is ridiculous. I want to be close to getting rid of this one by the end of the year. We'll see how it works out.

I remember not so very long ago not being able to sleep at night worrying how I would pay this month's bills. I don't do that anymore.

For anyone ready to throw in the towel: Don't. There are better times ahead and I know now we are going to get there.

Sarah

11 comments:

  1. I am sooooo proud of you guys!

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  2. For anyone ready to throw in the towel: Don't. There are better times ahead and I know now we are going to get there.


    I quoted this because I need to hear it over and over again. Being one income to support a bunch of people is difficult, but we are making a lot of headway in the debt department. I am proud that you have managed to make such a difference in your debt. We have everything paid off, except the student loan, equity line (a major mistake years ago on my part), and our mortgage. I get tired of the stress and worry, but it will be worth it. I love Dave Ramsey's site. It has helped me so much over the past few years. We are working on baby step 2 (with the equity line and student loan). My goal is equity line to be paid off in 2016, with the student loan finishing in 2017.

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  3. That's awesome! You have been so determined, and it's finally paying off (literally!). Once you can get the first one paid off, the snowball really does start to take off, and it's very satisfying. Best of luck on the AmEx!

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  4. So true. And that's awesome, a $300 snowball is nothing to scoff at! The line may be moving slowly, but it's moving on your favor, and the more you push, the better. Good work!

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  5. You have moved your ticker a lot! It seems to move slowly but look how far you've come! Having extra every month will accelerate your progress!
    Keep at it and be proud of your accomplishment!

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  6. That is so awesome Sarah! Congrats, you should be so proud!

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  7. slow and steady wins the race to debt freedom....kudos to you!

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  8. Congrats Sarah!! You've worked hard and it shows. Keep going and before long you will be DEBTFREE!! Woohoo!!

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  9. Woohoo I am so proud of you! What a difference $300 a month in extra debt reduction will make. I've been with you since the beginning and have seen the emotional ups and downs! Congrats my friend!

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  10. Debt can be really hard to handle, but declaring bankruptcy usually isn't the best option. There are many programs out there to help you get through it. I agree, don't throw in the towel so easily. You can make it through. http://www.outofdebt.ca/

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  11. Good for fighting debts in your own small but certain way. I always consider debt to be an enemy. http://mwelisa.wordpress.com/2014/10/01/debt-is-an-enemy/

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