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alicenwonder99
01-18-2008, 07:23 AM
We used to be the kind of family that had no debt (except for mortgage). If I did buy something on credit, like furniture, we would pay it off within a couple of months.

I don't know what happened to us over the last few years, but our debt is just insane now. I feel it is all of a sudden out of control, so I'm getting into the "snowball effect" method of debt reduction.

I figured it out yesterday, and it will take 4 years to get completely out of debt (except for mortgage). I will not reduce our small savings (lol), but I'll reduce our retirement savings for the 4 years down to 4% (company will match). I'm still trying to figure out if we can get any Disney trips in...lol...I know that should be the first thing we cut out!!

4 years just seems soooo long from now. I don't think our cars will last that long, they're 2000 & 2002.

Just wondering if anyone else got themselves into such a huge debt like us, and it's going to take YEARS to get out?

Jennifer823
01-18-2008, 07:42 AM
I know what you mean. It's not like we are spending our money frivilously, but when the prices of literally everything goes up and our salaries don't.. debt happens.

lastminutemom
01-18-2008, 07:52 AM
We have kept almost all our cars for 10 years or more. There is lots of research out there about building wealth and automobile ownership. The longer you keep your car, the better. Both our cars have nearly 95000 miles and we fully expect to reach at least 150000 with them. Cars (for the most part) if well maintained last forever.

GJM
01-18-2008, 07:59 AM
I would think your cars will last - our one car is a 1997 Honda with 120,000 miles on it. We try and keep our cars for as long as we can. I have a 2003 Toyota, and I am hoping that will last for a long time. My last Toyota had 160,000 miles on it.

taraprather
01-18-2008, 08:00 AM
I also just got done reading Total money Makeover and just started the snowball affect. I can have all my debt, including 2 newer cars (2006 and 2007), our mortgage(which we just got in August of 2007), and 7 credit cards paid off in about 8 years. If I don't want to include my mortgage, it will take me 3 years. I'm so excited!
BTW, cars can last a long time if properly maintained. My mom has a 2005 Toyota Matrix that she bought brand new. She is now at 298,456 miles. She drives her car for work and goes EVERYWHERE! It is still running like new. She has never had anything major wrong with it. She has an appoinment to replace the brakes today. She's has an oil change like every 3 weeks and her belt changed frequently. So they can last a very long time! Especially Toyotas!

theycallmered
01-18-2008, 08:33 AM
Honestly four years does not seem like a lot of time. The debt that you have incurred probably did not happen over night, thus you cannot expect for it to be dealt with overnight.

When it comes to your cars they should last. I have a 1993 Acura Integra that I am still driving around. Cars are meant to last if you take care of them properly.

nuke
01-18-2008, 08:49 AM
If you don't start paying it down think about how much more in debt you will be in four years. :eek:

Amy5000
01-18-2008, 09:01 AM
, so I'm getting into the "snowball effect" method of debt reduction.

So, can I ask what the "snowball effect" method of debt reduction is?

jenm2878
01-18-2008, 09:07 AM
Four years isn't really that long. My DH and I don't have credit card debt, but we have massive amounts of student loans, a car loan, home equity loan, and mortgage. I calculated that we can have all but the house paid off in 7-8 years. It sounds scary, but the last few years have flown by - the next few probably will too and we'll come out in much better shape!

Schachteles
01-18-2008, 09:07 AM
So, can I ask what the "snowball effect" method of debt reduction is?

The method is that if you have lets say three credit cards, one with a minimum payment of $50, one with a miniumum of $75 and one with a minimum of $150. You would start with the lowest payment and put any extras towards that $50 payment, when that is paid off you take that $50 you were paying on that card and now add it to the $75 minimum on the other card, so you would pay a minimum of $125 and just go down the line.

Hope that makes sense.

MinnieGi
01-18-2008, 09:18 AM
Four years may seem long away, but just think of how many more years will be added to that four years if you don't start today!!!

Several years ago we cut up all our CC's and went into debt reduction mode and paid everything off in about 2 years. We did take one Disney trip in that time, but we raised the money in cash before we went and it was a "budget" sort of trip. Our trip was also toward the end of our debt pay-off.

Pardon me, but I had to laugh at your cars not lasting. Mine is a 1998 Toyota Avalon and DH drives a 1992 4Runner!!!!!! We make sure they have regular tune-ups as needed and at times they need more than that. However the money we pay for repairs beats have a monthly car payment!!! Its one of the reasons we are able to travel so much now. We go at least once and many years twice to Disney for 7 + day trips, plus we go to Hilton Head Island for a week, and make other smaller weekend trips in the mid-atlantic. Many friends and neighbors comment on how much we travel and how we can afford that - on of the big reasons we can do it b/c we do not have any car payments! All the trips are paid for in cash.

nowellsl
01-18-2008, 09:22 AM
It took me 2 years but it was so worth it!

Toby'sFriend
01-18-2008, 09:24 AM
well, sounds like you better get started

Tnkrbelle565
01-18-2008, 09:30 AM
4 years really isn't that bad. 4 years ago, I determined that it would take us 5 years to get out of some serious CC debt (I unfortunately was in a situation where a family member stole my "identity" and took out CCs in my name and maxed them...in order for me not to have to pay them, this person would have been charged criminally). Well I'm less than a year away from paying everything off and it's a great feeling. We do not spend any unnecessary money during the year other than special occassions and we do treat ourselves to our Disney vacations every year. DH and I work opposite shifts in high stress jobs and we need to see each other (and DD!) at least one week a year.

tinkarooni
01-18-2008, 09:33 AM
We have never been big debt people either. We built a new home and accumulated $6,000 on 0% interest card. We were ok with that and have been saving all year to pay it off, but about a 8 months ago decided to ramp up the pay off and savings. We will have this debt paid off before it's due in February, our car paid off in June and than our house paid off in 6 years. This is our forever house, we have no intention of moving until maybe we're too old to maintain it (10 acres). The point is that once we started rolling and picking up steam, everything else fell into place. I hate to say the roses smelled sweeter, our children were better behaved and DH and I loved each other more but IMO when you are in debt it colors who you are. I wasn't happy or comfortable where we were financially and wanted to fix it.

You can fix it and I have to say IMO you will be a happier person for it...and my children are better behaved. :rotfl: And yes I do think that it will be hard not to go to Disney but you will have such a better time and a lighter heart if you go when you can really afford it and pay cash.

Good Luck

da-winnie-pooh
01-18-2008, 10:29 AM
Our cars are from 1993 (older than my teenaged dd!) and 1999 (with 160,000+ miles on it). We paid cash for both of them and are in no hurry to pay that much for a new vehicle again. In fact, our next vehicle will almost certainly be previously owned.

Four years isn't that long and it will be so great to be out of debt. You can do it!

lisajl
01-18-2008, 10:32 AM
Good for you! 4 years is not really that long. I am giving up my trip to Disney this year so we can save and go to Ireland next year.
It was not that hard a decision to make, I have to cut corners and pay off our debt, too. But, I think when you have something in your mind (pay off debt so I can go to Ireland), it really sets you in gear.
I even called our CC company to see if they would lower our rate. The answer was no cause we are already at 9.9%.
So, I am looking for a way to get that paid off asap and get rid of that card.

Lisa

WDWFRV
01-18-2008, 10:38 AM
I also just got done reading Total money Makeover and just started the snowball affect. I can have all my debt, including 2 newer cars (2006 and 2007), our mortgage(which we just got in August of 2007), and 7 credit cards paid off in about 8 years. If I don't want to include my mortgage, it will take me 3 years. I'm so excited!
BTW, cars can last a long time if properly maintained. My mom has a 2005 Toyota Matrix that she bought brand new. She is now at 298,456 miles. She drives her car for work and goes EVERYWHERE! It is still running like new. She has never had anything major wrong with it. She has an appoinment to replace the brakes today. She's has an oil change like every 3 weeks and her belt changed frequently. So they can last a very long time! Especially Toyotas!

But of course, I too have a 1998 Toyota Camry and it still purrs like a kitten, if you are smart you will buy the right kind of car to last you forever.

solfan68
01-18-2008, 10:56 AM
2008 will be a big year for us, if all goes as planned. Our tractor is paid off this Spring and my wife's vehicle is paid off this summer. My little Civic(98) is still going strong at 150k miles. The vehicle payments will be refocused on our CC debt. Not sure we can quite dig out in 12 months, but its going to be my goal. Now if someone could just do something about those blasted gas pumps I need to visit periodically.

Good luck to everyone having a go at this undertaking ! :thumbsup2

Irin997
01-18-2008, 12:15 PM
I'm still trying to figure out if we can get any Disney trips in...lol...I know that should be the first thing we cut out!!


Ding ding ding ding...yes, this is absolutely the first thing you cut. If you are in that much debt there is no way you should be spending money on a vacation. Think of where that $3000 could go instead of spending it on Disney....and how much that will cut off of your 4 years. And your reward 4 years later.....one slam-banging trip to Disney, paid in cash.

JodiR
01-18-2008, 12:25 PM
My dh has a 1995 Corsica and it has around 225,000 miles. It has needed some work done on it but it has been an overall good car. Still running.

JodiR
01-18-2008, 12:28 PM
It could be awhile for me to be out of debt also. But if I waited for 4 years to go on a Disney trip, my dd's would be too old to want to go. I have gone twice before, but if I go again (hopefully this summer) it will be our last.

crisi
01-18-2008, 12:30 PM
Yeah, it took years. I think that's why so many of us are "debt free evangenicals" cause we all know what life was like before, how hard it was to get out, and how much better life is now.

It will actually go surprisingly fast. Do everything you can, ever dollar just makes it go faster, and the paying down the debt part is really the worst, if you bite the bullet hard and can do it in three years (no Disney, no dining out, budget grocery shopping, limit shopping, buy what you can secondhand), it will be that much easier.

Don't forget that all that STUFF you spent money on over the years is probably sitting around your house garage saleable. One of my relatives made $1200 on her garage sale last summer. (She's a "I'm so broke, I never buy anything!" person, which has us all wondering what she sold for $1200!)

HunnyPots
01-18-2008, 12:46 PM
There's no reason you should worry about your cars not lasting; heck, those are new cars to us! My husband drives a 1993 model and my mini van is a 1999 and both still going strong. Routine maintenence and small repairs will save you a bundle over the price of a new car. We don't even think about replacement until we hit the 200,000 mile mark.

HenDuck
01-18-2008, 02:38 PM
We've got 5 years left on a 6-year car loan for DH's car :guilty: and some smallish CC debt.

So I'm looking at at least the same amount of time as you. My goal is demolish the CC debt by next year, take a budget trip to WDW in the summer of '09, then tackle the car debt. I am hoping we can get the car paid off by 2011, but that will take some serious discipline.

As for auto longevity - I specifically bought a Toyota (2002 Highlander) for its reliability and build quality. I fully expect it to make it to 2012 and/or 150,000 miles without a major problem. :thumbsup2

My mother passed on her Toyota to us during the early years of our marriage and I think it was 20 years old when we had it towed away for good. :)

As for the debt, I try to remind myself that it will be paid off and that I can still enjoy life while I pay it off. We have cut back on a lot of things, including vacations, but we won't completely deprive ourselves. Our trip to WDW next year HAS to be a budget trip, but we are going so that DS (7) will have an opportunity to share it with his grandparents while they can still enjoy it too.

Good luck, keep your head up, and stay on the Budget Boards for encouragement! :cheer2:

dsanner106
01-18-2008, 03:25 PM
Wow, I am jealous, your cars would be a step up for us. We have 4 , the new one being a 1999 model. Our lowest mileage is 154,000. And they all still drive well. If you keep them up, the minor repairs are far less than a car payment would amount to. Start your debt snowball, and start looking for every extra dollar you can save or make and add it in. you would be amazed how creative you can be if you are driven to pay these things off.

Drew

lacy1101
01-18-2008, 03:46 PM
It could be awhile for me to be out of debt also. But if I waited for 4 years to go on a Disney trip, my dd's would be too old to want to go. I have gone twice before, but if I go again (hopefully this summer) it will be our last.

This is me. If we waited until we were out of debt to return to Disney, our kids would be in college! I know we could pay our debt off quicker without the trips, but I can't sacrifice that special time with my kids (while they still want to go with us!).

Be assured, though, it will be paid for in cash - no charging. :thumbsup2 We're saving now for our trip in May '09.

mla1977
01-18-2008, 03:58 PM
I just recently looked over all of my credit cards. I plan on paying off one by the end of the year. To do that I will probably need to ask for a rate reduction. As long as it goes away, I will feel much better. I am taking a trip to DLR next month, but it is a budget trip too since DBF has a conference out there and we are using his dad's associate rate for our hotel in Anaheim. The only thing that I will be doing this year aside from that is my Tae Kwon Do tournaments, but that is worked into my regular budgets.

ceecee
01-18-2008, 04:08 PM
We have kept almost all our cars for 10 years or more. There is lots of research out there about building wealth and automobile ownership. The longer you keep your car, the better. Both our cars have nearly 95000 miles and we fully expect to reach at least 150000 with them. Cars (for the most part) if well maintained last forever.

We keep ours forever too, my husband is determined to get 200,000 on his Oldsmobile (1997) and he's at 186,000! We only put $600.00 of repairs in it last year. My 1999 Windstar is at 115,000, it's repair bills were $3000.00 but then it IS a Ford!:eek:

RayJay
01-18-2008, 04:21 PM
We used to be the kind of family that had no debt (except for mortgage). If I did buy something on credit, like furniture, we would pay it off within a couple of months.

I don't know what happened to us over the last few years, but our debt is just insane now. I feel it is all of a sudden out of control, so I'm getting into the "snowball effect" method of debt reduction.

I figured it out yesterday, and it will take 4 years to get completely out of debt (except for mortgage). I will not reduce our small savings (lol), but I'll reduce our retirement savings for the 4 years down to 4% (company will match). I'm still trying to figure out if we can get any Disney trips in...lol...I know that should be the first thing we cut out!!

4 years just seems soooo long from now. I don't think our cars will last that long, they're 2000 & 2002.

Just wondering if anyone else got themselves into such a huge debt like us, and it's going to take YEARS to get out?


Hi Alice,

Yep, Debt free here and it took me 4 to 5 very painful years to get out, and I did some really stupid things, I'm am always interested when someone posts these kind of posts, cause it was us and I know it can be done, so GO FOR IT.

I didn't cut back my 401k cause I robbed from it once and it broke my heart but everyone's way is different, the main thing is get out, sometimes it doesn't matter how you do it, just to keep on following thru, hence the word painful. Anyway I could type all night on this subject.

Best of Luck to you and your family.
RayJay

eyeheartgoofy
01-18-2008, 07:10 PM
Four years is not so long! You can do it ... maybe it will even be a bit quicker than 4 years once you get into the swing of things!

I remember, in the late fall of 1997 formulating a plan to have us debt free by 2000. It seemed like a huge task ... we met our goal in November 1999 ... an entire month ahead of schedule! Three monts later we went on a cruise to celebrate.

Jordans_Mommie
01-18-2008, 07:37 PM
I am in the same boat as you. I have mostly auto and student loan debt. I do have about 2k in cc debt. I have given myself 4 years to pay mine off as well. You can do it! :thumbsup2

I considered giving up my trip to Disney, but decided against it. My son and I have had a tough year with divorce and illness. I have a very demanding job and it takes me away from him more than I would like, so I am not willing to sacrifice this special trip. The good thing is, I have been saving for it and we will pay with cash. :yay: This will be our last big ticket trip until we are out of debt though.

KKB
01-18-2008, 11:35 PM
We used to be the kind of family that had no debt (except for mortgage). If I did buy something on credit, like furniture, we would pay it off within a couple of months.

I don't know what happened to us over the last few years, but our debt is just insane now. I feel it is all of a sudden out of control, so I'm getting into the "snowball effect" method of debt reduction.

I figured it out yesterday, and it will take 4 years to get completely out of debt (except for mortgage). I will not reduce our small savings (lol), but I'll reduce our retirement savings for the 4 years down to 4% (company will match). I'm still trying to figure out if we can get any Disney trips in...lol...I know that should be the first thing we cut out!!

4 years just seems soooo long from now. I don't think our cars will last that long, they're 2000 & 2002.

Just wondering if anyone else got themselves into such a huge debt like us, and it's going to take YEARS to get out?

A couple of tips...do NOT reduce your company matched retirement. That is FREE money...you should be contributing max funds at all times, if possible.

Yes...hold out on trips for now. We normally take a large trip each year, but we are starting graduate school so it will be CHEAP short trips for awhile!

2000 and 2002 vehicles should last you FINE for 4 more years! We have 2001 and 2002 vehicles, and anticipate replacements in 2011 and 2013 (all will be over 100K miles also). BUT if they continue to be reliable, we may keep on trucking!

The key is to REALLY look at your budget...HOW did that debt creep up in the first place. We write down everything we spend. We regularly analyze...is our money slipping out of our hands? What is TRULY important to spend on, and what are our financial goals? Friday night date is VERY important to DH & I...it doesn't have to be expensive, but it must be budgeted for. We only buy big items to replace worn out/broken items. Furniture/electronics/appliances only bought when we can get years w/ no interest. We plan on vehicles lasting a good 10 years. Travel is very important, so we budget for it. Kids activities are very important, but we still remain fairly frugal on this one. Clothing almost always purchased on sale, preferably clearance. Food is on sale/coupons, eating mostly chicken and lean burger (though been catching a load of cheap meat at Super Target marked down as expiring soon...thank goodness for freezers!) Love Starbucks, but I could not stomach $5/day...it is an occasional treat. (but I have a friend for whom this is "essential"--but I wonder about their debt....:guilty: )
SORRY...I babble...sit down, analyze the budget...where can you cut...what small treats can you include...it is SO worth it!
GOOD LUCK!

alicenwonder99
01-19-2008, 08:18 AM
The key is to REALLY look at your budget...HOW did that debt creep up in the first place. We write down everything we spend. We regularly analyze...is our money slipping out of our hands? What is TRULY important to spend on, and what are our financial goals? Friday night date is VERY important to DH & I...it doesn't have to be expensive, but it must be budgeted for. We only buy big items to replace worn out/broken items. Furniture/electronics/appliances only bought when we can get years w/ no interest. We plan on vehicles lasting a good 10 years. Travel is very important, so we budget for it. Kids activities are very important, but we still remain fairly frugal on this one. Clothing almost always purchased on sale, preferably clearance. Food is on sale/coupons, eating mostly chicken and lean burger (though been catching a load of cheap meat at Super Target marked down as expiring soon...thank goodness for freezers!) Love Starbucks, but I could not stomach $5/day...it is an occasional treat. (but I have a friend for whom this is "essential"--but I wonder about their debt....:guilty: )
SORRY...I babble...sit down, analyze the budget...where can you cut...what small treats can you include...it is SO worth it!
GOOD LUCK!

Hi, OP here!!

Thanks everyone for their words of encouragement. We used to live like the above, then stopped when our income jumped up considerably. I think that's what our problem was. I figured if we had a 6 figure income, I could stop cutting coupons and shopping the clearance items! Couple that with huge medical bills, and just living above our means...well, you get the picture.

Right after Thanksgiving, I started cutting my coupons again, shopping in the clearance sections again, and we're following our budgets (well, trying hard to).

It just sickens me that I allowed our family to get into this mess. I say ME because I'm the one who takes care of the bills and the finances.

Thanks!!! :) :) :)

dsanner106
01-19-2008, 08:28 AM
I work with someone who "must" stop at starbucks 3 times a day, but can't find the money to fund her IRA this year. I did the math, and she spent a little over 4000.00 at starbucks last year..... enough to fully fund her IRA. It is all about priorities and paying attention to what we spend.

D

ceecee
01-19-2008, 08:51 AM
:scared1: I work with someone who "must" stop at starbucks 3 times a day, but can't find the money to fund her IRA this year. I did the math, and she spent a little over 4000.00 at starbucks last year..... enough to fully fund her IRA. It is all about priorities and paying attention to what we spend.

D:scared1:
$4000.00 on Starbucks??? I'll stick with Folgers!:) I think the trick is once your income goes up and you have no debt, you need to continue in the "frugal" habits that you make while paying down debt and watch your savings accumulate. I will never stop shopping clearance (it gives me a rush!!) and will use a few coupons each week as well. I agree with the above poster...don't stop the 401K especially the matched part.

EthansMom
01-19-2008, 09:25 AM
It took 7 years of careful budgeting for DH and I to pay off all of our debt (except the mortgage). It isn't easy, but it can be done. And it feels soooo good when you pay off that last debt!

Best of Luck to all of those folks working to pay down their debts! :cheer2:

lorax123
01-19-2008, 09:28 AM
I also just got done reading Total money Makeover and just started the snowball affect. I can have all my debt, including 2 newer cars (2006 and 2007), our mortgage(which we just got in August of 2007), and 7 credit cards paid off in about 8 years. If I don't want to include my mortgage, it will take me 3 years. I'm so excited!
BTW, cars can last a long time if properly maintained. My mom has a 2005 Toyota Matrix that she bought brand new. She is now at 298,456 miles. She drives her car for work and goes EVERYWHERE! It is still running like new. She has never had anything major wrong with it. She has an appoinment to replace the brakes today. She's has an oil change like every 3 weeks and her belt changed frequently. So they can last a very long time! Especially Toyotas!

A 2005 with nearly 300k, already! Wow, she drives alot!!!

But I agree with a few of the posters. Car's last a long time if you take care of them and don't drive them hard. I hear so many people say 'my cars so old, it's 4 years old and has 70k on it. I have to start thinking about finding a new one.' 70k 5 years old, that's nothing!

The general unspoken rule is, you should be able to get 200k out of a vehicle with no major repairs if you follow factory service intervals.

Replacing new cars every few years, is a way a lot of people get sucked into debt. If you learn a little about maintaining your own vehicle, you'll also save LOTS of money.

Jakesmom504
01-19-2008, 10:04 AM
I just won the Total Money Makeover book on Ebay and can't wait until it comes in. We too are in serious cc debt and have 1 big car payment that unfortunately because of stupid mistakes in the past with cars, we can't reduce, and can't get rid of because we would actually lose money. We also have mortgage debt and student loan debt but right now we just need to get out of the cc debt! It's really bad, I still have 3 years of school left so I know it will get better but if we don't do something now, we won't make it another 3 years. I too, feel guilty since I do all the finances and should have put an end to it a long time ago. I've been selling on Ebay to save up for our Disney trip figuring that little amount of money will hardly put a dent in our debt and DH works 2 jobs, I work and go to school and we barely see each other. Selling on Ebay was something I wanted to do so that we can take DS on his first trip to Disney and have some fun. 2007 was a really rough year for my whole family, had some unfortunate, unexpected events take place and I just feel like we really need something to look forward too. Even now, my bro is leaving for Iraq in 3 weeks and we are hoping nothing will go wrong and he will be back in time to go with us.
Got a little OT there but we are in the same boat, you are not alone, and actually 4 years doesn't sound that bad! I'm hoping our's isn't more than that! I just can't wait to be able to say I did it and I'm never doing it again! Good Luck!:thumbsup2

Disneyoverload42
01-19-2008, 10:22 AM
OK, brace yourself - including our house (which is not our biggest debt) we are over a quarter of a million (yes 250,000) in debt. DH and I both came from afluent backgrounds and when we got out on our own we really didn't know how to handle money.... I was a princess and if I wanted something I got it - Thankfully, I've grown up alot.

When we initially figured out our timeline, it was going to take us 15 years to pay it off. However, 4 years into it, we can see the light at the end of the tunnel. What you didn't figure into your equation was the little windfalls and bumps :) If you get a tax return (which you shouldn't!!) apply it to your debt. If you get a raise, apply it to your debt. You get a rebate apply it to your debt. We are now looking at 7 years total for 15 years of debt - 3 more years, and the closer we get the MORE frugal I become because we are SO close.

My absolute tips -

Make sure you give yourself an allowance - if you deprive yourself totally, you will fail. DH and I tried the first few months to live on $10 each a month. :rotfl2: We would get a windfall and blow it like crazy because we were so deprived and then feel guilty afterwards.... We now have $10 a week each - which isn't much, but it is enough to not feel guilty about getting a cup of coffee or grabbing lunch on a really bad day.

Go to paycheck city or another site and figure your taxes down to where you are maximizing your paycheck, but not going to have to owe at the end of the year. We found that because we itemize, we actually can take up to 15 deductions before we owe (we have 4 kids) HOWEVER - don't because anything over 10 has to be reported by your employer to the IRS and can flag an audit.

Make sure you have a small emergency fund. Our emergency fund of a 1000 has paid for a car accident (towing and rental), 2 extensive ($900+) car repairs, and a 2 month job loss.

And we are driving 2 1999 cars with over 170K on each - I dream of the day we can walk into the dealership with $5000 and get a 60K mile car :lmao:


You can do it!!! :cheer2:

crisi
01-19-2008, 11:29 AM
Thanks everyone for their words of encouragement. We used to live like the above, then stopped when our income jumped up considerably. I think that's what our problem was. I figured if we had a 6 figure income, I could stop cutting coupons and shopping the clearance items! Couple that with huge medical bills, and just living above our means...well, you get the picture.


This is SO easy to do. Its like a switch goes off and you say "I'm rich now, I don't have to worry about it." But a six figure income spends really fast that way, isn't that much money anymore (and I know there are budget boarders living on half that that will laugh at that, but it is true - especially once you convince yourself you are "rich" and therefore can afford expensive shoes or a brand new car or even just not bothering with coupons at the grocery store) - and if you start justifying things based on "being rich" you'll find yourself in lots of debt fast.

crjack
01-19-2008, 05:15 PM
This is SO easy to do. Its like a switch goes off and you say "I'm rich now, I don't have to worry about it." But a six figure income spends really fast that way, isn't that much money anymore (and I know there are budget boarders living on half that that will laugh at that, but it is true - especially once you convince yourself you are "rich" and therefore can afford expensive shoes or a brand new car or even just not bothering with coupons at the grocery store) - and if you start justifying things based on "being rich" you'll find yourself in lots of debt fast.

Guilty of that as well.....that's why I check out the budget board to try and get back on track! I'm good with making sure the big things are covered like 401K's, 529's, etc. but it's the supermarket spending, kids clothes, sports items, etc. that need to be trimmed.

britt54311
01-19-2008, 07:49 PM
We are in the same situation you are in, and it will probably take us four years to get out of debt also. We didn't have much debt when I graduated from college in '03 then I made so much more money and the spending got out of control (remodeling our house, few Disney trips and other stuff). I just feel sick :sick: to think how much debt we got ourselves into :sad2:. Starting Feb. we will start our debt reduction, no more frivilous spending. Good luck!! :thumbsup2

FirstTimertoDiz
01-20-2008, 03:32 AM
We used to be the kind of family that had no debt (except for mortgage). If I did buy something on credit, like furniture, we would pay it off within a couple of months.

I don't know what happened to us over the last few years, but our debt is just insane now. I feel it is all of a sudden out of control, so I'm getting into the "snowball effect" method of debt reduction.

I figured it out yesterday, and it will take 4 years to get completely out of debt (except for mortgage). I will not reduce our small savings (lol), but I'll reduce our retirement savings for the 4 years down to 4% (company will match). I'm still trying to figure out if we can get any Disney trips in...lol...I know that should be the first thing we cut out!!

4 years just seems soooo long from now. I don't think our cars will last that long, they're 2000 & 2002.

Just wondering if anyone else got themselves into such a huge debt like us, and it's going to take YEARS to get out?


Well, if you would like some company on your journey, I will be right there with you- I actually have ours figured out to be paid in about 4 1/2 years, but since we are trying to have another baby, that could very easily change along the way. We should keep a thread to keep each other motivated along the way! Good luck to you.

Misty89
01-20-2008, 07:51 AM
Wishing you good luck~ you can do it!
I am in the same boat, and it will take me 2 years ( or less) to get out of debt. i have my plan set up a bit different, I work x amount of hours extra ( in a job sharing program) to cover what i need extra for my debt reduction each week.
I did want to chime in about Vehicles however :)
I worked with auto emissions for 7 years, I worked w/ car that were brand new to cars that were 20 Y/O. take it from me.....your cars will make it. Cars ARE MADE to last as long as they are not abused. Change the oil on time, service it when it needs it,etc.
and my ramble for the day....
my first car was a 1988 T-bird and it was awesome,:cloud9: everyone told me not to buy it because it has 122k miles on it, and it was old - this was 1993 so the car was 5 years old.. Well, i had to have that car, it was so cool.... and guess what! I owned and operated that car for 10 years before i sold it with 198k miles on it, we took it to Florida and back to Wisconsin w/ 175k miles on it with out a single worry. I sold it because a 2 door car was not practical w/ 2 children at that point ( it was still running smooth and strong Btw) the kid i sold it to racked it up :mad: :scared: 2 mths after he bought it - my DH saw it at the Junk yard later that summer :scared: :scared: )
it would have ran forever had it not been smashed up.

alicenwonder99
01-20-2008, 08:07 AM
Well, if you would like some company on your journey, I will be right there with you- I actually have ours figured out to be paid in about 4 1/2 years, but since we are trying to have another baby, that could very easily change along the way. We should keep a thread to keep each other motivated along the way! Good luck to you.

Yes, I'll start a thread called DEBT REDUCERS. We'll post as often as we can. It will be our "lifeline" in case we feel the itch to spend..lol.

dcfromva
01-20-2008, 08:10 AM
I did want to chime in about Vehicles however :)
I worked with auto emissions for 7 years, I worked w/ car that were brand new to cars that were 20 Y/O. take it from me.....your cars will make it. Cars ARE MADE to last as long as they are not abused. Cjhange the oil on time, service it when it needs it.


Last night, I just read an article from Consumer Reports (dated October 2007), "Make your car last 200,000 miles It's easy and can save you thousands in the long run"
They had 6,769 readers reporting vehicles with 200,000 miles or more which they said only represented about 1/2 of 1% of the respondents in their survey. But, they figured far more could be hanging onto to their cars longer and saving money because the cars are built to last.
Mainly, the advice in the article was the same as you have given--don't scrimp on scheduled maintenance (follow manufacturer guidelines in the owner's manual) and above all change the oil when it is recommended.

DH has a relatively new van--purchased in 2002 (seems like yesterday), but it has about 125,000 miles on it. We don't want to replace it for at least 2 1/2 more years, so I am really hoping it will go to 200,000. ( DH is very good about getting the service done on it, so I am hopeful. :) )

alicenwonder99
01-20-2008, 08:29 AM
Last night, I just read an article from Consumer Reports (dated October 2007), "Make your car last 200,000 miles It's easy and can save you thousands in the long run"
They had 6,769 reader reporting vehicles with 200,000 miles or more which they said only represented about 1/2 of 1% of the respondents in their survey. But, they figured far more could be hanging onto to their cars longer and saving money because the cars are built to last.
Mainly, the advice in the article was the same as you have given--don't scrimp on scheduled maintenance (follow manufacturer guidelines in the owner's manual) and above all change the oil when it is recommended.

DH has a relatively new van--purchased in 2002 (seems like yesterday), but it has about 125,000 miles on it. We don't want to replace it for at least 2 1/2 more years, so I am really hoping it will go to 200,000. ( DH is very good about getting the service done on it, so I am hopeful. :) )

Our 2002 is a Dodge Grand Caravan. The month we paid off the van, it need $4000 worth of work done. We were so careful with getting the scheduled maintenance done. Anyway, it has around 60,000 miles on it, so here's hoping it will last many more years to come.

Our other car is a 2000 Kia Sportage. My dh and our oldest dd drive it. It has over 85,000 miles on it. The car is just a pile of ****!! :mad: We don't think it's going to last too much longer. I'm hoping it will last at least 2 more years.

hentob
01-20-2008, 08:31 AM
It just sickens me that I allowed our family to get into this mess. I say ME because I'm the one who takes care of the bills and the finances.

Thanks!!! :) :) :)

Please don't beat yourself up:hug: You are doing something about it, so don't look back...only forward:cool2:

48 months is not so bad!

dcfromva
01-20-2008, 09:32 AM
Our 2002 is a Dodge Grand Caravan. The month we paid off the van, it need $4000 worth of work done. We were so careful with getting the scheduled maintenance done. Anyway, it has around 60,000 miles on it, so here's hoping it will last many more years to come.



Our previous van was a 1994 Dodge Grand Caravan. (It did need a transmission replacement at about 60K thankfully, it was covered under warranty). We handed it off to a relative in 2002 with about 125K miles on it. It has not needed any major repairs and I believe it has over 200K on it now. So maybe the 4,000 you put into your van will keep you running for a while. (hoping anyway).

With DH's current vehicle, we had to put 2K into it this past summer--a compressor went out on it (along with a couple of other things) and before that we had to replace a front bearing, so it does start a person to worry--what's next?

But, I guess the key is to set aside some money for repairs because things do wear out.

The article I was reading in Consumer Reports listed an example of holding a Honda Civic EX for 15yrs vrs trading it off every 5 years. The maint and repair bill was $18,300 (for keeping the one vehicle for 15 years) vrs the new car ever 5 yrs with a maint and repair bill of $6,200. The biggest difference was depreciation. The 15 yr car suffered $14,900 vrs $35,500 for a new car every 5 years. And, the new car every 5 years paid more finance and interest, fees and taxes and insurance. CR estimated in their comparison a $20K savings (keeping the same vehicle 15 years) plus another potential 10+k in investment earnings (assuming you invest the savings).

Disneyoverload42
01-20-2008, 11:03 AM
Both our cars (the ones that have over 170k each) are 99 dodge caravans - we bought them both at around 60K and probably have put maybe 5k of work in them over the last 7 & 3 years we've had them. It can be done :thumbsup2
We don't follow the oil change recommendations terribly well but we do check all our fluids regularly. Seems electrical systems are what we've had the most trouble with.

but back to the thread topic, we paid them both off around August of last year and not having those car payments has helped our budget SO much. Even if we do a $1000 repair every 3 or 4 months, we are coming out ahead compared to what our payments were.

housemouse
01-20-2008, 11:58 AM
The method is that if you have lets say three credit cards, one with a minimum payment of $50, one with a miniumum of $75 and one with a minimum of $150. You would start with the lowest payment and put any extras towards that $50 payment, when that is paid off you take that $50 you were paying on that card and now add it to the $75 minimum on the other card, so you would pay a minimum of $125 and just go down the line.

Hope that makes sense.

Actually, it's not the payment you look at but the balances.


say you have 3 credit cards with 1k, 2k and 3k balances and $50, $100, and $75 payment per month respectively.

You keep on paying each payment every month but all extra you can scrape up goes to the card with the lowest balance each month until paid off. Then take that payment and add it to the $100 payment on the 2k balance plus all extra you can scrape up and throw it at it til it's gone. Then you take the $150 payment + the $75 payment + all extra money you can find and wipe out the 3k. Make sense?

KirstenB
01-20-2008, 12:38 PM
Hi, OP here!!

Thanks everyone for their words of encouragement. We used to live like the above, then stopped when our income jumped up considerably. I think that's what our problem was. I figured if we had a 6 figure income, I could stop cutting coupons and shopping the clearance items! Couple that with huge medical bills, and just living above our means...well, you get the picture.

Right after Thanksgiving, I started cutting my coupons again, shopping in the clearance sections again, and we're following our budgets (well, trying hard to).

It just sickens me that I allowed our family to get into this mess. I say ME because I'm the one who takes care of the bills and the finances.

Thanks!!! :) :) :)


OP, thanks for being brave and candid! We got into huge debt in college, and it took us 2 years to get out. 2 years of no restaurants, no movies, etc. Our situation was different because we were making relatively little money compared to our debt, so our reduction was pretty extreme.

DH's salary has gone up a lot over the last few years, so I can imagine what you're talking about. It's a bit like a kid in the candy store. :goodvibes He travels a lot for work, and I've been doing a lot of clothing shopping, etc. I really appreciate your reality check, and will try to scale back.

Anyway, I bet a lot of us have been in your shoes. No judging, just wanted to wish you luck.

MrsPete
01-20-2008, 12:43 PM
It took us 13 years. When we were married in 1990, these were our facts:

$200 between the two of us in cash/checking account
A brand-new mortgage
A one-year old Nissan with a payment of $135/month
No credit cards or other debt
Plus two college degrees and two jobs

13 years later we were in a larger house with NO mortgage.
Three paid-for cars in the driveway
Emergency savings, college savings, and retirement savings are on track
Two credit cards, paid in full each month
Still two college degrees and two jobs

You have to do without things to make this happen. People thought we were nuts for sharing a car for the first three years of our marriage (and we lived way out where there was no public transportation), but it made SUCH a difference in our budget -- we didn't add a second one until it was absolutely necessary. We made-do with hand-me-down furniture, rarely went out to dinner, etc.

Every bit of effort was worth it. Our girls are a tween and a teen now, and we can afford to travel with them frequently. They won't have to worry about how to pay for college. Taking our oldest to the orthodontist wasn't a financial concern.

T. Lynn
01-20-2008, 01:31 PM
Quicken has an awesome program that helps you keep on track of making extra payments. You just click on the accounts (if you programed them into quicken) that you want pay off and it figures everything out for you.

wulfgeat
01-20-2008, 02:53 PM
The Debt Snowball really does work, too. There is such a feeling of pride when you get just one thing paid off. It energizes you for the next and then when it is gone you feel even better.

I occassionally run. When I have a set distance that I want to go I just keep thinking in terms of how little I have left to do. In your situation, think about how long your life will be. Then think about how little time to pay off your debt really is. I tell myself on the last mile, "10 more minutes. I can put up with anything for 10 minutes. Don't quit"

You can put up with anything for 4 years to get your debt paid off. Don't Quit!

StephMK
01-20-2008, 03:05 PM
Hi, OP here!!

It just sickens me that I allowed our family to get into this mess. I say ME because I'm the one who takes care of the bills and the finances.

Thanks!!! :) :) :)

Yeah, I feel that guilt too because I handle our finances as well. Our mess comes from me being at home and only working PT while medical bills, moving expenses & house/kid,etc stuff bills keep creeping up. However, you, like us, are part of a family & I don't know about you, but my DH is pretty ignores our financial info. He knows about where we are overall but that's about the extent of his interest. It's hard for me to tell him no to stuff since he is the one bringing it home. I feel he's part to blame because he knows but chooses to ignore it most of the time. So it's probably not just you.

Aristomommy
01-20-2008, 03:17 PM
Yeah, I feel that guilt too because I handle our finances as well. Our mess comes from me being at home and only working PT while medical bills, moving expenses & house/kid,etc stuff bills keep creeping up. However, you, like us, are part of a family & I don't know about you, but my DH is pretty ignores our financial info. He knows about where we are overall but that's about the extent of his interest. It's hard for me to tell him no to stuff since he is the one bringing it home. I feel he's part to blame because he knows but chooses to ignore it most of the time. So it's probably not just you.

Well, I know the person who handles the finances often feels guilty when money is tight or debt rises. But I would say that the other spouse who completely tunes out and doesn't participate and support the other one is just as guilty. Unless there is spending that is being hidden or something like that, I would put more blame on the spouse who doesn't participate. I usually pay the bills and for many years DH didn't participate. Now I want him more involved and we make decisions together. We have shared goals and know when we need to watch our spending, how much to spend on birthdays, lunches etc.

0hmyheck
01-20-2008, 03:58 PM
Live like no one else so you can live like no one else. I gave the book to DH for a birthday present and he is finally excited. I am now reading it and can't wait to start.

I put my entire check into a credit union account and will do the same with the next one and I will have my emergency fund set up. I did this before reading the book because DH said it was one of the first things to do.

I haven't had time to read yet but am excited to see what is in store for me.

I know for a fact the DVC is going to get sold! The rest is just following the plan and paying off the debt.

My question is this: We have always kept seperate finances. Can we do the plan seperate or do we have combine all debts and income?

Good luck everyone!

SarahTel
04-18-2008, 05:21 AM
The Debt Snowball really does work, too. There is such a feeling of pride when you get just one thing paid off. It energizes you for the next and then when it is gone you feel even better.

I completely agree. We tried DRs Snowball method a few years back & we definately felt it was working. As each small debt was cleared, we got a boost to take on the next...etc. Unfortunately for us, we were just in that much debt that we needed something with a little more umph! We ended up on an IVA with this company (http://www.freemanjones.co.uk/) & we are currently 2 years into it.

It would have taken forever with the snowball method - but for people with a little debt (100 - 10,000) it is a fantastic technique.

seashoreCM
04-18-2008, 08:08 AM
I'm sorry to say this but if you were planning a trip to Disney, that could make the debt last a whole year longer compared with not going to Disney and paying down debt using that money.

A big problem in the U.S. nowadays (21'st century) is usury.

Disney hints: http://members.aol.com/ajaynejr/disney.htm

beckanoah
04-18-2008, 08:23 AM
4 years just seems soooo long from now. I don't think our cars will last that long, they're 2000 & 2002.

Just wondering if anyone else got themselves into such a huge debt like us, and it's going to take YEARS to get out?


Well, yes, I do have a large amount of credit card debt (workingon it) but my car is a 1992... so I think your cars will be OK!

ceecee
04-18-2008, 08:24 AM
No more WANTS only Needs! No new furniture, car, vacations, etc. If you don't have the cash don't buy it. No more instant gratification! A friend of mine wants to get out of debt but CAN NOT get rid of her CC and they are too tempting! She is in her 30's, not 10! If a grown adult can't control using a CC, she needs to get rid of it.:confused3 Your cars should last we have a Olds Eighty Eight 1997 w/200,000 and a 1999 Windstar w/96,000. We have saved up enough to buy another, so we're ready when one goes. Nothing depriciates like a car so I hate buying them.
Then once out of debt, stay out of debt. You will get used to it and then you can accumulate some savings. If four years seems too long, look into a second job until it's paid off.

Dashzap
04-18-2008, 08:43 AM
it will take 4 years to get completely out of debt (except for mortgage). I will not reduce our small savings (lol), but I'll reduce our retirement savings for the 4 years down to 4% (company will match). I'm still trying to figure out if we can get any Disney trips in...lol...I know that should be the first thing we cut out!!

4 years just seems soooo long from now. I don't think our cars will last that long, they're 2000 & 2002.

Your cars should last. Ten year old cars do need the some repairs, but it will still cost less than buying a new car. DH and I are driving 10 year old cars with no plans to replace them any time soon. :goodvibes

Cars and vacations are not good places for your money right now.

ocalla
04-18-2008, 08:44 AM
Gosh, I am so glad I opened this thread. I have been thinking about buying a new car because ours are older models (and let's face it when we see the new ones it makes us want one too). My DH keeps saying he wants to keep these until they don't run anymore. I was not raised to keep vehicles after they hit 75 - 85,000 miles, and both of ours are now over 100,000.

After reading the posts, I see how silly the idea is to want new cars. I would much rather put the "car payment" money on our cc bills, and be debt free.

We have been really working on the cc bills for 1 year now and just about all the extra money I have goes to paying them off. I don't even purchase lunch out, I wait and have lunch after I get off of work and head home. DH brings lunch with him since he works all day.

But I do have to agree with one of the posters, you MUST treat yourself to something small (weather it's a movie, dinner out, bottle of wine) every now and then or you will just totally forget the "get out of debt plan"

Thanks everyone for "guiding me in the right direction". :worship:

To the original poster, hang in there. 4 years is not long (spoken from the mouth of a mother to a 16 year old daughter who will be graduating in just 2 SHORT years) Time Speeds By!!!

Pigeon
04-18-2008, 08:56 AM
4 years just seems soooo long from now. I don't think our cars will last that long, they're 2000 & 2002.


There's no reason the cars shouldn't last. Dh drives a 93 Corolla that runs just fine. I've got a 2002 Saturn, and I consider it practically new.

ceecee
04-18-2008, 09:08 AM
Gosh, I am so glad I opened this thread. I have been thinking about buying a new car because ours are older models (and let's face it when we see the new ones it makes us want one too).

When I was 22, I got my first NEW car, the salesman told me how much the car would be worth once I drove it off the lot!:scared1: I still remember that!

tonilea
04-18-2008, 09:13 AM
We used to be the kind of family that had no debt (except for mortgage). If I did buy something on credit, like furniture, we would pay it off within a couple of months.

I don't know what happened to us over the last few years, but our debt is just insane now. I feel it is all of a sudden out of control, so I'm getting into the "snowball effect" method of debt reduction.

I figured it out yesterday, and it will take 4 years to get completely out of debt (except for mortgage). I will not reduce our small savings (lol), but I'll reduce our retirement savings for the 4 years down to 4% (company will match). I'm still trying to figure out if we can get any Disney trips in...lol...I know that should be the first thing we cut out!!

4 years just seems soooo long from now. I don't think our cars will last that long, they're 2000 & 2002.

Just wondering if anyone else got themselves into such a huge debt like us, and it's going to take YEARS to get out?


You might be suprised. It seems like once we got really intense about paying down debt, we were blessed with opportunity after opportunity to make extra money. Admittedly, some of those opportunities were always there, we just didn't see them. We thought it would take us 2 years to be debt free, but we are looking at 15 months now. We should be debt free within the month.

tonilea
04-18-2008, 09:17 AM
Gosh, I am so glad I opened this thread. I have been thinking about buying a new car because ours are older models (and let's face it when we see the new ones it makes us want one too). My DH keeps saying he wants to keep these until they don't run anymore. I was not raised to keep vehicles after they hit 75 - 85,000 miles, and both of ours are now over 100,000.


Our Ford pickup has in excess of 200,000 miles - we bought it with 114,000 miles. I can say without hesitation that it has been the best, most reliable vehicle we have ever owned - including some new vehicles.

ocalla
04-18-2008, 10:03 AM
Here's a question for all of you budget minded folks out there.

We still have 1 year left to pay on our vehicles (both were purchased used), but they are both terrible with gas mileage. Should we just keep them since they are almost paid off? Or should we trade them in for better gas mileage even though that would be adding 4 years to our car notes?

I just can't make up my mind on this, any ideas would be welcome.

ceecee
04-18-2008, 10:07 AM
Here's a question for all of you budget minded folks out there.

We still have 1 year left to pay on our vehicles (both were purchased used), but they are both terrible with gas mileage. Should we just keep them since they are almost paid off? Or should we trade them in for better gas mileage even though that would be adding 4 years to our car notes?

I just can't make up my mind on this, any ideas would be welcome.
How bad are we talking? My friend just purchased an SUV that gets 12-14 mpg! What we they thinking? They got a great deal on it.:rotfl:

Chicago526
04-18-2008, 10:21 AM
Here's a question for all of you budget minded folks out there.

We still have 1 year left to pay on our vehicles (both were purchased used), but they are both terrible with gas mileage. Should we just keep them since they are almost paid off? Or should we trade them in for better gas mileage even though that would be adding 4 years to our car notes?

I just can't make up my mind on this, any ideas would be welcome.

Well, just take your MPG that you get now and compare it to what you'd trade it in for.

Let's say your MPG right now is 15, and you want to get a car that gets 25. That's a difference of 10 MPG.

Then take your yearly average miles that you drive. Let's say you drive 12,000 miles a year. 12,000 miles divided by 15 MPG is 800 galons of gas, @ 3.50 per gallon you spend $2800 a year on fuel for that car. Now, with the 25 MPG car, 12,000 miles divided by 25 MPG is 480 gallons of gas, @ 3.50 per gallon, you'd spend $1680 in gas, for a savings of $1120 per year or about $93 a month.

In this example, given that a new car loan would likely cost you more than $93 a month, you should keep the gas guzzelers. Once they are paid off, you can put what you were spending on car payments in to savings, and save to pay cash to replace your current vehicals 6 to 8 years down the road.

ocalla
04-18-2008, 10:24 AM
2 SUV's, one is a Suburban the other is a Jeep Cherokee.

Purchased them 3 years ago before the gas prices went through the roof!!! Now everytime I have to fill up, I want to cry.

DH drives the suburban and is in Sales, he probably fills up twice a week. His office does give him a "gas/mileage credit" but I am afraid that will not cover his entire gas expense at this rate.

You would think the smaller SUV (Cherokee) would be better on Gas Mileage but Not True.

Jhult
04-18-2008, 10:28 AM
Ocalla,
My wife and I both have gas guzzlers (Dodge Ram and Chevy Trailblazer). The lease on the Ram is up in June, but the gas was driving us nuts. We went to a Nissan dealership on 12/31/07 and bought a 2007 pre-owned Altima and could not be happier. I went from getting 13 MPG city, to 24-25 MPG city. The savings on gas is unbelievable. The lease on the Chevy is up in a year and we are planning on going back to Nissan and getting a Rogue. We figure that we will then be saving $200+ in gas per month.

We had a large increase in income a few years ago and thought we should go buy us large, brand-new vehicles. This, along with medical bills, hampered us tremendously, and ended up hurting my near-perfect credit.

We made a decision 6 months ago to change, and buying the Altima and getting in a debt program has the first step. We now see the light at the end of the tunnel. We should have our debt paid off within 3-4 years, and are much happier now.

KristinU
04-18-2008, 11:42 AM
Live like no one else so you can live like no one else. I gave the book to DH for a birthday present and he is finally excited. I am now reading it and can't wait to start.

I put my entire check into a credit union account and will do the same with the next one and I will have my emergency fund set up. I did this before reading the book because DH said it was one of the first things to do.

I haven't had time to read yet but am excited to see what is in store for me.

I know for a fact the DVC is going to get sold! The rest is just following the plan and paying off the debt.

My question is this: We have always kept seperate finances. Can we do the plan seperate or do we have combine all debts and income?

Good luck everyone!

Congrats! To answer your question Dave Ramsey will have you combining all of your finances into "our" finances vs. "mine" and "yours". Cool that you're setting off with selling DVC - we held onto ours throughout paying off debt and considered it several times throughout the process...we now just sold after doing some math on the dues. The Timeshare Store is who we went through and we couldn't be more pleased.

You might be suprised. It seems like once we got really intense about paying down debt, we were blessed with opportunity after opportunity to make extra money. Admittedly, some of those opportunities were always there, we just didn't see them. We thought it would take us 2 years to be debt free, but we are looking at 15 months now. We should be debt free within the month.

So very true!!! When we set out our goal to become debt free (except the house) it looked like 18 months. Then the intensity just kept growing once we saw some results...we cut the budget like crazy and sold lots of stuff and ended up doing it in 6 months.

OP - you never know once your momentum gets going - your 4 years might just get pared down!:cheer2:

zaja
04-18-2008, 01:49 PM
Vehicles do last forever - well, a really long time - with regular maintenance. We just got rid of a suburban that had 345,000 miles on it, and that was only because of gas milage. Still ran amazingly, even at that high milage!

Traveliz
04-18-2008, 02:44 PM
Vehicles do last forever - well, a really long time - with regular maintenance. We just got rid of a suburban that had 345,000 miles on it, and that was only because of gas milage. Still ran amazingly, even at that high milage!

Wow I am quite impressed. All these vehichles have so little mileage on them compared to mine - I drive a full size van (so not so gas friendly but I haul alot of kids) and I am just at 203, 000 miles and although the van is beginning to show some eccentric behavior (nothing that keeps me from driving it though). I will tell my car about yours and perhaps she will endeavor to be good that long!

Liz

taximomfor4
04-18-2008, 06:44 PM
Wow, you all with impressage miles on your vehicles are inspiring me. We had a pontiac that we THOUGHT would last forever, but after paying at least $400 in repairs 4 times in 8 months, we got rid of it. We are meticulous with maintenance, because neither of us is handy. Can't repair ANYTHING on our own. But we couldn't have dh's car gone into the shop that often. Not the car to hold out with, I guess. Bought a little Hyundai, which has a looooong warranty. Doing perfect maintenance. We are trying to make THIS be our car that keeps going, and going, and going....

Then, our Chevy minivan...which I was still making payments on...kept losing its heat. They would keep it for days (and loan me a teeny Cobalt or something), fix something in the minivan, give it back, the heat would work for a couple of weeks, then it would start coming and going again. So the whole process started again. We couldn't keep taking the loaner AND dh's hyundai everywhere we went (family doesn't fit in a car)...so after the fifth time with Chevy trying to fix the heat, we threw in the towel. Bought a kia (loooong warranty). Payments stayed the same, but now we mostly started over. Yuck. This one BETTER keep going, and going, and going. (I did get no-interest financing on it! YAY!)

Funny enough, OP, we are in serious debt paydown mode now too. I just got a job, so am going to do all the spreadsheets to nail down our budget. Not going to be fun. Not sure I am up to looking at the reality. But it sure will feel better when it's all done! I think a support thread is a fine idea!

SarahTel
05-16-2008, 05:40 AM
You might be suprised. It seems like once we got really intense about paying down debt, we were blessed with opportunity after opportunity to make extra money. Admittedly, some of those opportunities were always there, we just didn't see them. We thought it would take us 2 years to be debt free, but we are looking at 15 months now. We should be debt free within the month.

That's excellent news! I noticed that most people on this thread are looking at ways of saving money, cutting back & generating extra cash as a way to get out of debt. If you can do it this is by far the best method & everyone deserves a big pat on the back! :woohoo:

I just thought I would also add this (http://www.myfinances.co.uk/news/loans/debt-management/personal-bankrupcies-up-$1222178.htm) into the mix. For those in a *lot* of debt, looking into a debt solution my be the best option before your debts get any worse. That link discusses the top five & should give you an idea if any will suit your situation. If your really struggling - have a look.

Well done to everyone!