April showers bring HUGE payoff numbers!
Nah, who am I kidding? It was us who made it snow this month! Snowball that is.
The final numbers are in and we paid off $10,591.57 or 18.12% in debt this month! We’ve officially paid off 46.26% of our debt in 7 months AND we are officially under the $50k mark… only $47,867.96 to go! That number may seem daunting but it’s all about your outlook. While listening to the DR podcast, I heard one caller mention that instead of months, she started counting down the payments. Only 10 more payments to go sounds A LOT better than 10 more months. Hint hint…
Money used this month to eliminate debt:
- Leftovers from our zero-based budget (this is what we find in our budget/income on a monthly basis)
- Our tax returns minus two small personal purchases
- Cash from savings
As mentioned last month, we have money in savings and are slowly withdrawing that account to bring it to $1,000. This month we made all of our regular monthly payments, trying to bring the balance on Debt #5 as low as possible, and then withdrew the difference to knock it out completely. Remaining transparent, we do have more money in savings that will be deposited toward debt eventually, but getting quotes for chimney repairs is taking longer than expected.
- 4 new tires for my car
- 4 new tires for the beau’s car
- a new piece of art
- a weighted blanket
- Easter flowers
- a homemade soap workshop
- a pasta claw & bottle of celebratory wine
- and some deodorant cream for me
Eight new tires was a BIG cost for us! But I did my research and shopped around ($11 per tire saved). I also found a coupon in the local Clipper Magazine the day I found the cheapest tires ($40 off each time!) AND the brand we were buying was offering a $50 rebate for every 4 tires purchased. Zing! That’s a $134 savings, per car. I knew my car needed new tires but we didn’t know the beau’s would need them as well… and there wasn’t even an instant of panic when we got the news. I literally called him and said, “just buy the tires, we have plenty of cash in our budget leftover this month.” A $355 purchase and nothing, other than happiness. That has NEVER happened to me. The amount of security I now feel is well worth all of the hard work over these last 7 months.
This month we had some fun too! We continued to participate in Nine Pin’s 26er challenge (sampling ciders 7 & 8), we had Chinese takeout twice, I visited a friend and congratulated her on her 2nd year in business (seriously, support this mother + daughter team, it’s a wonderful addition to Troy), I visited a friend aka my partner in crime who FINALLY moved back to the area, and we spent three days in Portsmouth, NH drinking all the beer and eating all the fried food we could possibly handle. I also went to a bridal shower for a friend whom I haven’t seen in forever (life, I get it!) and had a lovely time (and paying cash for the card and gift from the gift sinking fund envelope).
Because we tapped into savings and used our tax refund toward debt, WE PAID OFF LOAN #5!!! That loan total heading into April was $10,402.27, BOOM!
We are now working on paying off Student Loan #6, which was consolidated with the first student loan we paid off in full, so unfortunately I can’t see all of the stats. I can see that it was originally disbursed in August 2005 for $13,064.96 and the fixed interest rate is now 3.75% (could have been higher or lower at the time of signing). The balance as of April 30th is $14,084.25 and if we were to follow Navient’s payment plan, this loan will be paid of on 9/25/2029. My personal goal is to have this loan paid off by June 30th 2018…. 11 years and 3 months ahead of schedule! The minimum payment for this loan is only $65.50 BUT if you add in all of the previous minimum payments because that’s what you do for a debt snowball, the minimum is now $589.67.
Jumping back into the month, we stuck to our meal plan pretty diligently. We tried one new recipe that I saw floating around on FB that looked delicious… and it turned into a major FAIL. We were laughing so hard, it was like one of those Pinterest fail slideshows you see with the birthday cakes. The meatballs crumbled the second we added liquid, and it just looked like slop. After adding some additional seasoning, I have to admit it was delish buuuuuut we won’t be making this a second time. I also spent Sunday making a favorite lasagna of ours while sipping on some boxed wine… it was very hygge. Ha! And inspiring to cook nicer or should I say, a longer meal on a Sunday. We eat fast, usually one pot meals throughout the week, slowing it down and enjoying a meal after an hour or two of work felt nice. Annnnnnd the other perk was leftovers. We rarely have leftovers.
Sorry for the lack of photographs – my phone is on the fritz and I don’t have a sinking fund for that expense. 🙂
What are your goals for May? When are YOU going to be debt free?