creating a debt free life

Archive for the ‘paying off debt’ Category

One step back …

Since my last post we have moved into a home we purchased. For some reason this move h as been one of our hardest yet !! We had rented an apartment closer to work to see if we would like it, and we did not . Our home is being rented by our daughter and her family so we bought a second home.

We did a lot of the things you are not supposed to pull this off. Took out a 401 k loan, Suze Orman would skin us alive for that, but we only had 20 grand in the account and borrowing half allowed us to pay off the old loan and pay for the closing we had to pay and the five percent down on our 104 grand house. We had to pay to rent the truck and gas and all of that, and whew, it was a mess.

We had no washer and dryer, no fridge, so we got out our Best Buy cards and bought them with 36 months no interest.  We hope to get them gone in about 24. We just got a zero interest card for 18 months with a way lower interest rate after those 18 months if we do not manage to pay off the three  cards we plan to transfer , although we should have no problem doing so. We will divide the balance by 18 months and get it paid off.

So, we are backwards a bit, but still just as determined to pay off debt. Just a detour, or as I put as the title , a few steps back. In  March we will pay off our largest payment, his credit union loan with his bonus and that will free up almost 300 bucks a month  to pay down the new credit card and when that is paid off it will all go to the Best Buy account since that has the longest no interest amount and by March of 2015 whatever is left his bonus will take care of  and leave enough to tackle anything else we have not paid yet. The car is the last thing we will tackle, but once all the other debt is gone, we hope to take that six year loan and turn it into a four year loan, maybe even a bit less. I would love to make it three, but four is most probable at this point.

So, we took a few steps back, but we will get caught up very fast and get back on track. The whole point was the mortgage on this new house is only 750.00 a  month, to rent it would be  300 more a month. So, whatever it took us to pull this off, we are happy to own the house we live in, well, the bank owns it, but at least we are not renting !! We are paying much  less than rent would be, and very happy to be back in our home town and close to our family again !!

I will be posting on a more regular basis,  but I have been posting on my beading post a bit more regularly if you want to check it out. IT is not always beads, but usually is !!

Thanks for stopping by !!

Stephie

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What does wealth mean to me /you ?

 

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Another blogger posed the question, what does wealth look like, or mean to  you. I did not have to think long. She suggested some things, among them nice cars or house, but to us, that is not what we are going for.

 

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Wealth to us, my husband and I means security. Freedom. When you owe money, you are in many  ways, working for the  company you owe. You work for them, not yourself. You have to plan your life around work you have to do to pay those debts every day. Now, I know there is money you make that does not go to them. But  if you have substantial debt, you have a lot of hands held out each month and often times, when you include your mortage, they get a lot more  of your check than you do. Period the end.

We have dreams of course. We want to pay off our house and we want to buy a building downtown to start a business. With no mortgage, that is possible. With a mortgage, possible but stressful and not probable.

Retirement for us  has never meant to stop working and just play golf and sit around be lazy. Quite the opposite. We want a business to run, something we love to do when he retires from where he works now,  so we keep active and busy . We want reasons to get up every morning. A purpose. We want to be part of the community and get involved with community events and enjoy being out in the world.

David will never retire from working. He is very vocal about that. He saw his own father retire and sit in a recliner and die. He refuses to own a recliner. They are not allowed in the house. He will retire from the company he works for between 70 and 75 years old.. What age depends on where we are on this plan. How much is saved, do we have our building already, how much security do we have in place.  We have just over 18 years until he is 70. We cannot waste any time. We have  to get our debt and house paid off asap so we can make the  decisions that affect the quality of our golden years. Now a days  you can expect to live into your nineties and maybe even 100 and that is our goal, we joke we want to live until at least 110 , and we will try to do that , but we want to live until the day we die, not  be in a  nursing home or sick, so we are working on our health as well.

Some things are out of our hands, but we are grabbing  what we can control. We are working to get thinner and healthier. Can we prevent anything from happening, no, no one can, but we are thinking positive and planning for a long full life. We CAN pay off all our debt. We CAN save up a huge nest egg both for emergency and retirement. We CAN walk and eat right. So, we CAN do a lot. We also CAN plan and plot and come up with a great retirement business that will keep us alive and happy and excited to get up every morning.  Something we can do together.

So, this is step one, which is very critical. Pay off our debt.  Every single dime, including the house. Then save. Save money like squirrels save acorns.

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Once we have an 8 month emergency fund and have enough money going into the 401k, then we start saving again for our business. There is nothing romantic about our plans. Nothing edgy. It is just staying the course and making sure we do what we need to do to make things happen the way we want them to happen.

We recently read a quote that said something to the effect of , dreams without plans are wishes. I have no clue who to give the credit to, but it is so true. If you dream, but never make a plan for that dream, it really is just a wish. It will probably never come true.

Things happen and that is okay. As long as we have our emergency fund, it is all good. Occasionally our savings will be  redirected to emergency to rebuild if something like a blown water heater, or air condiioner malfunction happen, but then we just rebuild what we had to spend and, once done, back to where we were at. Simple. Easy to follow.

Lets face it. Budgets and diets are both alike in many ways and people resist them for the same reason. It is more fun to not do them. Eating and spending what you want sounds like fun, but is it really ? At the end of the day you are fat and/ or broke and that is certainly not fun.

We had  50 grand in the bank once. Years ago.  An inheritance. What an amazing feeling that was. But getting laid off and being out of work for months before he had the job he has now,  and having to do major overhauls on two baths that were close to unusable, and some foundation repair and put up fences, and and loaning to our grown kids who were in need at the time, who did pay back every cent within a few years, just kind of ate it up. Very sad.

I want that feeling again. It was so fun to walk into a store and KNOW y ou could buy anything you wanted cash, but are choosing not to. It was fun to know we could pay cash for a car, but did not !! We loved that feeling and cannot wait to have it again.

So, we know how it feels, so we are working toward that feeling  of security that money gave us at the time.  Wealth to us is many things, but not fancy cars and houses. If we have those one day great, but they are not high on our list no matter how wonderful they are !!

So, what does wealth mean to you ? How do you define it ? It can be a very defining question !!!!

Hope you enjoyed my scrabble piece and chain  play and my modge podged acorns, I love playing and making things to put on my blog !!!

Thanks so much for taking the time to come by, it  means a lot to me !!!

Stephie

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updates

Been off line a full week  because of a week of visting grandkids.

This week we start our official first week on our new budget. Robin,  one of our debt coaches set up our new budget and we have a set plan for every dollar. Our spend every penny plan. S E P .  This past week we took the first bit of money from our car accident  accident and paid off our first card of our debt snow ball. How exciting to finally see one debt gone. I will be paying another hundred today on the second bill and  will be chipping away until it is gone, which when we get some more insurance money  should take care of it, and number three. I am so thrilled to see the snow ball starting.

So, starting  this week it will be tight, but we are not the least bit upset about the tight budget, we are so excited to see this process starting . We look so forward to seeing the debts disapear !! Once the bills are paid off, what freedom we will have !! We are determined to get there as fast as we can !!

So, as we go along I will share what we learn and our progress here. It was hard to be offline for a week, but I am back now and excited to be seeing the debt snowball start !!

Stephie