if i were debt free

October 23rd, 2007

If I Were Debt Free….

I was tagged in the latest financial meme going around the blogosphere, started by Ana at DebtFREE-Revolution. Lynnae at Being Frugal tagged me and asked “If I were debt free, what would I do?

I am just going to go ahead and assume this includes my mortgage. I don’t talk a lot about my mortgage debt when talking about eliminating my debts, because it is not the biggest priority to me right now. But it is still debt, still there, and if I was truly debt free, it wouldn’t exist either. So, combined with my other debts and the amount I usually manage to throw at debt payments, I’ve freed up about $1800 a month to do things with.

Whoa. Just…. whoa.

Well, now… what to do? I would have my spouse’s 401K deduction set to 10%. I would also start contributing the maximum to my Roth IRA. Those two things together would take up about $700 of that $1800 a month I’d freed up. I would contribute the rest to our emergency fund until I’d saved 6 months worth of expenses. Without debt, that would happen quickly. And then I would start contributing $300 per month to each of my children’s college funds, and increase our fun budget from zero to $200 a month and general savings to $200 a month for house-related renovations. I might even bump the 401K contribution up to 15%. Crazy! Heh.

Basically, I would save a whole lot more, and spend a little more. There are a few renovations to the house I would love to do, and I could save for those little by little, as well as save for a new(er) car. Which ends up being spending eventually of course but better than new debt!

This was fun to think about, but I’m not sure it will ever happen. The house probably won’t be paid off for a loooooong time. But, at the same time, my spouse hopefully will continue to increase his earnings as time goes on, so maybe it will happen sooner than I think. I do know that even eliminating the non-mortgage debt will put us in a much better place than I could have imagined a year ago. Here’s to dreaming….

I am going to tag 3 more people: Simply Us (to help her come up with topics for her new daily posts, of course!), Poorer than You, and Blogging Away Debt. Debt… be gone!

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11 Responses to “If I Were Debt Free….”

  1. C’mon!!!
    It WILL happen for you. Believe it.
    You’re on the right track.

  2. An extra $200 in the fun budget would be great. And putting money into retirement/college, also wise decisions.

    I think it’d be nice to increase my quilting budget. :-) Or maybe add an extra coffee night each month.

    But the best thing would be that (next year) I could leave my job and find something else.

  3. Thanks Fred! It doesn’t feel like the house will ever get paid off :)

    The rest… it feels okay. Debt! Be Gone!

    @Mrs Micah – I have always wanted to learn to quilt. I even went to a quilting store once and bought fabric. but I have no attention span. lol

  4. I’ve been in debt for so long that I’m not entirely sure what i would do with no debt whatsoever other than possibly spend more.

    A very interesting question.

    As for the house you’d be surprised how quickly it can actually be paid off (or more accurately how quickly time flies)

  5. Time does fly…. I try not to think about it :)

  6. What about giving? Wouldn’t you give a percentage to your favorite charity?

  7. Giving is based on a % of income for me, so having new available income doesn’t change the % of total income I have, if you know what I mean.

    But, I might have to rethink the %. I didn’t really think about that. thanks for sharing :)

  8. Blimey $1800 a month is a lot of money, and what great (and sensible) plans for it. No wonder you want to be debt free

  9. Isn’t that a scary lot of money? Kind of depressing I pay so much to debt :)

    About $700 of that is my mortgage though so my debt free “goal” as defined by this blog only frees up $1100.

    $1100 is still a lot though and I have plans…. :cackles:

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