a year of debt reduction

June 19th, 2008

A Year Of Debt Reduction

I started writing this blog on June 19th, 2007, exactly one year ago today.  At the time, I started it rather impulsively to help me organize my thoughts about debt reduction and keep me motivated to continue even after the newness of all the ideas I was trying to implement wore off.

I honestly could never have imagined what a labor of love and support this has turned into.  I truly get excited every day about writing posts, reading comments, thinking about new ideas, participating in the personal finance community, and keeping my focus and drive about reducing my debt.

My spouse and I were talking a few days ago about how my blog’s first anniversary was coming up, and he said to me that when I first told him I had a plan for us to be completely out of all non-mortgage debt by December 2010, he thought I was crazy.  Which, looking back, I realize now is why he basically focused on our credit card debt for the first few months when he was talking about our debt at all, and never really mentioned the car or the student loans.  The credit card debt, I think he was reasonably sure we could eliminate by 2010.  :)   But he doesn’t think I am crazy any more, not by a long shot.

I am happy to report that at this point, not only have we eliminated our credit card debt, but we’ve, in total, eliminated $16,401.39 of our debt in the past year.  And in total, we’ve paid $19,338.48 towards debt (including interest) since June 2007.  Of that, $10,535.33 was the budgeted minimum payments of $810.41 per month and $8803.15 was snowflaked from a myriad of sources, as humble as taking online surveys for some additional pocket change and as big as adding another part time job. We’ve revamped our goal of December 2010 to December 2009 to have eliminated all of our non-mortgage debt, and so far are well within target to meet it.  As of June 19th, 2008, we have paid off 45% of the debt we had as of June 19th, 2007.

On January 1st, 2008, I set a stretch goal of paying $18,000 to debt in 2008.  So far we have, in 6 months, paid $8833.94 to debt.  That is almost exactly on pace to meet the $18,000 stretch goal, with 49% of that goal met in 6 months, and that was with both a car engine replacement and furnace replacement.  I think our stretch goal is well within our reach – only time will tell if we can meet it but I feel very optimistic.  And, as a bonus, meeting that would also mean my spouse’s entire student loan would be paid off.  Being down to only two debts…  I can barely imagine it.  But I want to!

All in all, it has been a great year.  Thank you all for joining me in this journey so far and sharing yourselves with me as well.  On to the next year, and the next chapter of our journey.  Who knows, I might have to start thinking about how to eliminate mortgage debt much sooner than I ever thought I would.  :)

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30 Responses to “A Year Of Debt Reduction”

  1. Congratulations!

  2. You have done a great job. You should be really proud of yourselves. It is tough to get out of debt unless you can control your spending or increase your income. Sounds like you have done that.

  3. Ahhh….I just love milestones. Reading your post made me evaluate what is next for me for the next year–my budget year “turns over” July 1.

    Keep up the good work!

  4. Congrats on a year of great articles!

  5. Way to go! You are inspiring to us all!

  6. Wow! Congratulations :-) What a great inspiration. I’m sure you’ll meet your December 2008 goal – you have your plan in place and are doing what it takes. Well done.

  7. Congratulations on one year!

  8. Congratulations!!! Thats why I started my own blog too, to keep myself motivated! You are very inspiring!

  9. Congratulations on such a successful first year of debt reduction, you’ve done such a good job of it and helped so many others along the way with your support, I know I for one appreciate it very much.

  10. It is really heartening to hear about your journey from “deep in debt” to “getting out of debt fast”. More power to you!!!

  11. Congratulations! You’re doing a fantastic job!

  12. What a great look back on a great year…. many congrats!

  13. Congratulations on all of your very impressive accomplishments and for inspiring so many people! Happy Blogoversary!

  14. Wonderful post! And congratulations! Being free of debt is an unbelievable feeling. Keep up all the good work.

    I enjoy your blog – found you through Gatherlittlebylittle.com. It has benefited so many more people than if you had just told a few friends & family about your journey.

  15. Congratulations! I salute your accomplishments in such a short time.

    I just looked back and realized I made my first post June 18th, 2007. Clearly I’ll need to make a similar post – although it will not be nearly as exciting.

  16. Congrats! And thanks for sharing with us along the way. I am sure you have been an inspiration to many!

    And about that mortgage…. let me tell you that not having a mortgage is about the best sleeping ‘pill’ one can have :)

    Keep up the great progress!

  17. Congratulations on your blogoversary. You are an inspiration to us all! :)

  18. Wow, that’s a lot of debt paid off in a year :D

    Go you!

  19. Very inspiring! Congratulations!!

  20. Congratulations!!! That’s a real accomplishment.

    I’m linking to this in my next round of link love

  21. Wow…that’s such an inspriation. I am in so much debt that I don’t know where to begin, (over $50,000), not including my mortgage. Looking at this it gives me hope though, if you can put that much down on your debt, why can’t I? My husband and I make a decent living. I’m starting today to smarten up!

  22. Congrats! Great progress and keep it up! Very inspiring.

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