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Here’s how our debt looked just before we started in May 2017. It’s pretty bad. It’s so bad in fact that my husband even asked if we really wanted to publicize these numbers. But here’s the thing. I want this to be real, and I want to help other people avoid the mess that we are in. Without real numbers, I don’t think this would be as helpful. When you are buried in debt and see no way out, you need to know that it’s possible. Perhaps you need to see that someone else has it worse than you. You’re welcome.
|Type of Debt||Expected Payoff||Balance|
|Student Loan||2017 – July||$2,572.85|
|Credit Card||2017 – December||$7,680.31|
|Credit Card||2018 – June||$6,295.47|
|Home Equity Loan||2018 – September||$8,834.97|
|Student Loan||2019 – September||$22,478.57|
|Student Loan||2020 – November||$32,912.09|
|Auto Loan||2021 – July||$20,070.96|
|Mortgage||2022 – May||$47,550.35|
|Student Loan||2023 – February||$36,550.07|
|TOTAL DEBT INCLUDING MORTGAGE||$184,945.64|
|TOTAL DEBT WITHOUT MORTGAGE||$137,395.29|
TLDR: Modified snowball method using Undebt.it
We are using the snowball method of repayment, but we modified it a bit to fit our own needs. I’ll write more on this later, but essentially the snowball method means you focus on paying off your lowest balance first. You put all your extra money on the first debt while paying only minimum payments to the rest. Once that first debt it paid, you take the money you were using for that payment and roll it right onto the next debt, while continuing to make minimum payments on the rest. Your payments are able to get bigger each time you roll a payment over, just like a snowball. We moved a couple things around to fit our own needs, but essentially that’s what we are doing.
I love the fact that we will have another account paid off each and every year. Laugh if you want, but we need that motivation. Part of our struggle all these years has been feeling like it would take forever to pay anything off. It really helps with our motivation to see that another debt will be paid off in “just one more year.” Also, since our total balance is SO high, it seemed like small changes wouldn’t make an impact. This plan shows us what small changes can do!
We are using the tools at Undebt.it to track our debt, and it has been SO helpful! I’m a spreadsheet nerd, so I probably could have figured this out on my own. But honestly, I don’t have that kind of time! Undebt.it makes it so easy. It has really helped my husband and I stay on the same page with our debt plan. We talk frequently about adding to the snowball or not spending money so we don’t take away from the snowball. It’s fantastic. Their free plan is actually completely free, and you can do your entire debt management plan for FREE. There are a few premium features if you decide you want/need them, but you can even try the premium features for free without giving a credit card. I hate places that make you give them a credit card for a “free” trial, don’t you?
Undebt.it takes a little time to set it up because you need to input all your balances, interest rates, and minimum payments. It is SO worth it. Once your information is entered, you can look at different debt payment plans too see what works best for you. You’ll be able to see if one method saves you more money or gets you out of debt faster. The best plan for you is the plan you can stick to. Someone else might look at our data and think a different method is better, but we are on a plan that makes sense to us and one that we believe we can stick to!
What method are you using to pay off your debt? Why did you choose that method? Share in the comments so others can decide what’s best for them!