“3 .. 2 .. 1.. WE’RE DEBT FREE!!” We shouted with the couple on the radio who just shared their debt free story on the Dave Ramsey show! This is something we shouted regularly as we listened daily hoping for one day to have our turn to scream those famous three words.
Well, as of today we haven’t been able to scream those words on the Dave Ramsey show, but we have been able to say WE’RE DEBT FREE!! We paid off $95,000 in 2 years.
Here’s our story
We moved to Florida from Atlanta in August 2016 to be closer to my husband’s family. We wanted our children to grow up around them. Well, the rents were too high for too little house. Also because we were homeowners before, we didn’t want to jump into buying house with all of the responsibility that comes with it and have DEBT!
Fortunately, my in-laws had a small (I am NOT exaggerating) suite in the back of their home. I did NOT want to stay there, but my husband had a vision. After going back and forth (and a lot of screaming), I agreed. We spent about $3,000 to renovate the inside of it and make it livable. We moved into this 1 bedroom suite in September 2016. My two older children had a bedroom in their grandparents home, and my youngest slept in the back with us. Now we were all on the same land, just feet apart.
(Yes, I lived in here for 2 years. I promise it was cute on the inside. No one came over but my best friend and my mother. It was HARD, but the reward was great – keep reading.)
At this time we had 95,000 in debt.
My in-laws knew we had goals and did NOT charge us RENT. They did NOT ask for a DIME! Let me say that again, they did NOT charge us or ask us for a DIME! We did give them $300 a month because we were using their power, internet and just because it was the right thing to do.
All of 2017 we paid off every debt we had except for my student loan (that was 55k). So by the end of 2017 we had paid off a total of 40k in debt:
1 Student Loan (his 3K)
2 Credit cards (both 6k)
2 Car notes (Mine 17k) (His 14k) ** We had just bought these cars too. Earl bought his in 2015, and mine in 2017 so we paid his off in 2 years and mine in one year. Before we bought those cars, we hadn’t had a car note in 10 years but we needed newer cars.
In 2018 with only my student loan as our debt, we continued to pay the minimum but decided it was time to buy a home. We started putting money aside for the home and closed on our 4 Bed, 3 Bath, 3 Car garage home in August 2018 and moved in September 2018. Exactly 2 years from when we first moved to Florida. We were able to fix up our home with cash and that felt amazing. But wait – we still had a 55K debt hanging over our head.
In January 2019 we agreed to pay off my student loan. It was $55k. By November, we had got it down to 26k. I was proud of us and thought that was it for the year. I didn’t see another 26k coming in 30 days. My husband said HAVE FAITH!
Shortly after that, I saw 2 FB post by my friends, Tomiko and Danielle. They both shared how they needed some money and manifested it. I already write down prayers and affirmations but I wasn’t at the time writing about my student loans. Early December I started writing everyday – “I will pay off my student loan in full. I will get 26k.” And of course praying/believing and really not worrying about it. In my mind, I was still going to set money aside and have a new goal to pay it off by March 2020.
Well, December 29th my husband said, “Happy Early Birthday! I had 2 big closings and I’m paying off your 25.6k loan balance in FULL tomorrow!”
Mouth drop moment!! We paid it off the next morning and are officially debt free (outside of the mortgage with is our next plan).
We paid of 95k in debt in 2 years. (2017/2019)
2 Credit cards
2 Car notes
2 Student Loans
Debt Free baby!! We followed Dave Ramsey’s Financial Peace University on our road to being debt free and are still following the steps. I did try to get on the his show to do the debt free scream, but we haven’t had a call back yet.
I’m still hopeful we will one day share our story on his show. (Someone share this with him, please!)
On the morning we actually paid our loan off, Bailee and I screamed when we pressed the pay button “We’re DEBT FREE!”
Oh!! Being Debt free was on my vision board too! It has manifested.
We went into 2020 debt free. And oh what a blessing it was because who knew what was in front of us with COVID. In 2020, we were still able to thrive. With only house bills to pay, we were able to get new floors, cabinets, redesigned our office and BUILT A POOL – all debt free.
In all honestly, when you’re in a mountain of debt, it can look overwhelming. But once you make up your mind to get rid off it, it’s 100% possible. I was willing to stay in a one bedroom suite for 2 years to get that debt paid off. One thing Dave Ramsey says is,
“If you will live like no one else, later you can live like no one else.”
On days when it seemed like it was too far off, those stories on the Dave Ramsey show kept me motivated and recharged me.
Stay tuned for the paid off house post!
Thank you GOD!