What do you do after 25 years of marriage? Wipe out your debt.
About a month ago my husband and I decided that we were going to TOTALLY reduce our debt which includes credit cards, car loans, school loans and eventually our mortgage. Our debt free journey will most likely take us about 6 years but the financial freedom we will have when we are done will be worth the sacrifices we are making now.
We have always been very fortunate over the years. When my children were young I was able to stay at home to raise them. My husband consistently moved up in his career and with that came raises, some large some small. When my kids were older I started to work, part time and then full time. Our income was always growing, but so was our spending. We made it and we spent it. We never lived below our means. NEVER! And because of those decisions, not preparing properly for our kids college tuition, choosing to put our kids through private schools, and finally not being prepared for layoffs (2 in 1 year) has put us in a, well I'll call it, not able to breath position.
We started to read the Dave Ramsey book, The Total Money Makeover: A Proven Plan for Financial Fitness and were amazed at the simple yet common sense ways he suggested to manage our money. I was like, duh, how stupid are we. It's really just ways that our grandparents used to do it before there were credit cards and crazy balloon mortgages. Dave Ramsey is also the host of the very popular and entertaining talk show on Fox Business Network called The Dave Ramsey Show where he talks about becoming debt free and features viewers that have become debt free and how they have done it.
Well now we have taken control of our financial future. All credit cards have been cut [knife through heart], budgets have been written (including my grocery budget) and are being followed to a T. Cuts have been made, against some unhappy teenagers wishes (more on that in another post). I will admit, this month has been hard [[uhh yeah]], I mean after all I have no credit cards, but we are determined to do this and I know that we can.
There was a great article today on Wallet Pop called Dave Ramsey on bailouts, foreclosures, and how the recession can save America. In the article Dave talks about who is to blame for this recession and how people that are debt free don't even know we are in one . My favorite line in the article is this:
..."for the first time in decades, the savings rate is climbing! Bargain shopping is cool! Cheap is in! For once, many people are starting to pay attention to their finances and take personal responsibility for their households. There is always a lesson to be learned from a fall."
I absolutely love that line..."Bargain shopping is cool! Cheap is in!" It's my new motto and it is why I write this blog, because I'm cool and in. [[snicker and think how my kids are rolling their eyes about now]]
I encourage you to read his book and watch his show. It's really inspiring.
I hope that you will follow (and join) our journey to living completely debt free.
Note: They should come up with a credit card patch..ya know like the one for cigarettes. I could use one about now.
Cindy Livesey, Living Rich With Coupons - http://www.livingrichwithcoupons.com/