My wife and I are serious about becoming debt free. We want to have financial freedom and the ability to bless others with our wealth. This is something that is hard to accomplish when you are throwing away hundreds of dollars a month towards debt. Debt can seem like a 300 pound gorilla at times. It has you in a corner and won’t let you go; but, after reading Dave Ramsey’s Financial Peace, taking part of the Financial Peace class, and listening to countless podcasts we decided to get gazelle intense, as Dave calls it, and pay off our debt.
After realizing how much freedom being debt free can bring, we decided to get serious and bust through our wall of debt like a 400lb angry lineman. This meant drastically changing our lifestyle. Instead of just living month to month, we made a game plan to not just pay our minimum payments. It meant reducing our grocery bill, not eating out, buying lean when we did eat out, and bringing our lunch to work every day. Rather than using our tax return on a vacation, climbing gear, running apparel, or other thing we wanted, we paid off my car.
Paying off the car felt amazing. It instantly gave us an extra $250 per month to throw towards other debt, and savings. This past weekend we reached a huge milestone in our journey to pay off debt….we sold our rental property in my home town, Denton, TX. The sale will allow us to pay off a HUGE chunk of student loan debt – bringing us a thousand steps closer to becoming debt free. By my estimate we will be completely debt free by the end of the year, possibly by the end of THIS summer.
I can’t even tell you how excited we are that we are so close to paying off this beast of burden. Debt holds you back from truly living in freedom. Paying off debt is smart, but it requires short term sacrifice for HUGE long term results. Below are a few things we are looking forward to upon becoming debt free.
- More money to give. Once we are debt free we will have more discretionary income to tithe and give to others in need, and just to do simple things like bless a friend by purchasing their dinner.
- More money to save, and more money to invest towards retirement. With hundreds of dollars a month going towards debt, you are VERY limited in how much wealth you can build towards retirement years.
- Saving for a home. Sure, we just sold a house, but it was in an area we didn’t want to settle down in. Our ideal home would be here in Austin, which will require us to save A LOT of money. Being debt free will allow us to get there faster than possible with debt.
- Freedom to enjoy life. Without debt we will have more discretionary income to treat ourselves to nice dinners and take family vacations.
- Living worry free. Without $500 a month going towards debt we will be able to build a nice cushion of savings that will give us a feeling of peace and security if case things happen to go south with my work.
- Seizing investment opportunities. Once our debt is fully paid off we will have a lot more freedom to invest when opportunities arise.
- Saving for our kids college fund. Lets face it. Thinking about our kids future would have been a lot more difficult with our own mound of debt under us, and burdening our children with their own debt pile is the last thing I want for them.
The end is now in sight for us. We are super excited about becoming debt free, and we want everybody to know that becoming debt free IS possible. It’s also something that should be strived for. Nobody should be content to just pay debt for the rest of their life. If you need a dose of inspiration, just start listening to The Dave Ramsey Show. You will hear solid advice about finances and occasionally hear a person call in with their own success story.