The Official 2019 Debt Smackdown

Welcome to the Official* 2019 Debt Smackdown! 


Happy new year everyone! 

I know a few of use have been chomping at the bit to get going with 2019's debt - so with out further ado, I present this years spreadsheet! First of all, quick thanks to everyone on here who supported this last year, and helped make sure the Google Sheet remained in tip top shape.

So what's this about? If you are holding onto some debt as you enter 2019 - and would like to get rid of it - this challenge is for you.

To the participants from last year, welcome back! For some of us, our total debts are too large to smack down completely in one calendar year, so if you're here from last year, congratulations on your progress and let's keep on doing this! In 2018, we collectively paid down over $1,500,000 in debt! An increase of OVER $600,000 than in 2017!

For all new participants, we are happy to have you join in this year! New blood is always welcome. Let's all motivate each other to pay off those debts and continue moving forward to financial freedom.

Per last year, this is a shared one between the two forums/communities. Hopefully, that won't bring any problems! (Link to the Forum post [soon])

How it works:


1. List the amount of total debt that you owe. 
This step is to give you an awareness of your current debt situation. Feel free to share, this forum is a safe and nonjudgmental place. You can also decide to keep this information private, you don't have to post your total here if you are not comfortable doing so. 

2. Post in this thread the total amount of debt you would like to pay off during the 2019 calendar year. (This part is required.) 
Feel free to break down the amounts by credit card/type of debt. Also, if you have a specific plan or some ideas on how you plan to pay down the debt, you can post that too. Maybe your plan will spark some ideas for others on how to tackle their own debts!

3. Check in monthly in this thread and report on how your debt smackdown is going. (This part is required.)

4. Post monthly on the 2019 Google Sheet to track your progress. (This part is required.)
Claim a line on the spreadsheet, and post your total debt to be paid off, and the monthly amount that you send off towards it. Some people track their total payments and don't account for interest, some people account for principal only. The method you choose is up to you!

If you come across this challenge later in the year, no worries, you can still jump right in. Just put zeroes in the months where you had not joined the challenge yet, and start in the month you join in. 
 

Last year, we collectively paid off $1,500,000. Let's smash that number again in 2019!

Please let me know any issues with the sheet - sometimes things are a bit wonky when making new ones!

*Official in the sense that there's a spreadsheet. Not official in the sense that it's made by YNAB. I'm just following naming conventions here :)

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  • I missed updating last month!  OOPS!

    I've managed to cross over the 80% goal mark.  Best news of all though is my net worth IS NOW POSITIVE!!!!  WOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOHOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!

    You all have been such an inspiration as I come in here feeling like I'm struggling and reading all of the championing of debt that is going on.  I am on pace to be out of debt completely by April next year, one year after I was hoping. 

    I still remain saying this is a complete achievement for me with all of the thin months and struggles with work, tuition, rent, repairs, and other various sideways financial moves that have happened since I started using YNAB.  

    And in six months, I get to SAVE MONEY.  Not just pennies, but actual money.  I have no idea what this will be like as I haven't been in this position for 15 years.

    Best lesson I could pass on to anyone: if you are partnered with someone bad with money, don't make yourself bad with money too.  Help them get better with money and protect both of your interests.

    Like 14
    • Pixel spender May I add my own WOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOHOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO! to this? Thank you. :)

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    • Pixel spender WAHOO!!! That's awesome to see that line cross into the black!!! Congrats!!

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    • Pixel spender I see a lot of green in your future! Congratulations on such a positive achievement! ;)

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    • Matthew I'm glad you did!  There's nothing like a rousing round of many folks doing WOOOOOHOOOOOs all at once!  Thank YOU!

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    • farfromtheusual  Faness Thanks for the congrats. :) This forum has been so helpful in keeping the budget mojo alive.

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  • Here's the November update:

                                  Oct Balance    Payments             Current Bal            

    Mastercard:      $839.46          -$61.00                 $778.46       

    Visa:                     $948.78              $22.97                $971.75

    TOTAL:            $1718.70                                            $1750.21

    I back slid some, but that was mostly due to my BF's birthday. I'm pleased it was only $23. I managed to stretch everything else out to cover almost all of it. I'm not even going to adjust the total on my debt amount because that would be too complicated. I'm pleased I've ONLY accrued less than $900 in debt now, and hopefully no more in Dec (that means busting my butt and working extra hours to cover the extra spending that I'll do). My average is adding about $1200 in debt every year, and then trying to pay it off over the next year while adding another $1200 in debt. So if I can stay under $1000 I'll be really happy with that.

    So it looks like I'll be hanging out here again next year... onward and upward from here.

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      farfromtheusual I was here last year, this year, and will be next year too! Yay for persevering! Onward and upward indeed. :)

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    • Violet Drill yup, that's been the status quo for a few years running. It won't be that way forever, though, which is the good news!

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    • farfromtheusual Yup, I'll see you back here next year too! I don't think I'll be able to do much of an actual pay down amount for my next challenge but I plan on trying to get a little down while mostly working at not adding any more. I'm really looking forward to getting started on the new year's goals!

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    • farfromtheusual You'll be in the best of YNAB company! :)

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    • Orchid Display I almost feel like there should be a 'not adding to any debt' challenge for those of us that are so close to the razor's edge. 🙄🤣

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    • farfromtheusual I’d be all over that one!

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    • farfromtheusual A podcast I was listening to today featured someone who dug herself out of debt, but then she started saving like crazy. She gave the analogy that debt is like a hole, and once you are out, you want to get as far away from the hole as possible to not fall in again. So true.

      Look at this analogy like you are climbing up a ladder, or down one like Jack & the Beanstalk and running away from the giant. I think I like that one better. You are going down the ladder, and even if you have set backs to keep you from moving down, you are on a scaffolding platform for a rest to deal with a situation, and then you can continue down the ladder. Definitely boardgame / video game analogies, get to a point, perform a task, then move forward. My rambling aside, the key from this is that you are moving forward and not moving back towards that Giant Debt. :)

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    • Purple Foal those are really good analogies!! I think we are already on track for some of that, or at least I am, because I look at certain things now and think that I don't ever want it to NOT be buffered the way I have it (or better). Even though we do back slide, I don't compromise and use the things that are buffered because they're more important to me than a little bit more debt for a little while. I know how hard it was to build them up and I'm not about to let them go!

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      • Slate Blue Vacuum
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      farfromtheusual As much as I'm laughing and kudoing this, I know the pitfalls all too well. Try to find someway to add income. Sometimes it's too hard to cram a lifestyle in when you're barely covering cost of living... We did this for 10 years and then BAM. 6 figures in consumer debt. I'm not saying it could happen to you, I'm saying it happened to me.

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    • Slate Blue Vacuum YIKES! I hear you on that!! We continually do better and better every year, thankfully. I can see how easy it is for the wheels to come off the wagon, though. And yes, adding more income is always on the to do list!! Thanks for the encouragement!

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  • November check in:

    Sadly I'm still playing catch-up to my husband being off work so I wasn't able to put much extra towards the debt like I was before October.  But!  The good news is I didn't backslide any.  And since I was more aggressive at the beginning of the year I think I hit my debt payment goal about 2 months ago!

    I paid 1,897.10 towards my debt this month. 

    I should be able to get rid of both my credit card debt and truck payment by the end of next year!

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    • Grey Tux That's good news!

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    • Grey Tux wow, great job!!

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    • Grey Tux You can do it! Congrats on meeting your goal. I love the idea of getting ahead when possible, and makes up for months where it's not feasible or goes the other way. Like the holidays! 

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      • Grey Tux
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        Nicole Whiskey Mama farfromtheusual Thanks!  The really good news is my husbands new job pays more and once we get a few paychecks in I'm hoping we can accelerate the debt payoff!  It's like waiting for a pot of water to boil though....  can't wait, can't wait...  LOL!

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    • Grey Tux Congratulations on your husband's new job! Those new dollars will be here before you know it! ;)

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    • Grey Tux haha, I feel the same way! I just stare at my budget sometimes, wishing I had something I could update. LOL

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    • farfromtheusual Right!?!

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  • November update… I can’t seem to catch a break. Remember my job that I said I wasn’t sure was going to stick? Welp, I ended up quitting at the end of October after having an ethical disagreement with my office manager about how people should be treated. SO. I spent most of November hunting for a new second job. Started that job, told them I was looking for about 25-30 hours/week, and they ended up scheduling me for 49 hours the week of thanksgiving. (But least I got holiday pay and overtime.)

    Despite going almost 4 weeks working only one job, I still managed to make a dent in my debt. I have a $2K payment scheduled for Friday to pay off one of my credit cards, which will almost put me at my goal for this year! I’m hoping to finish out the year with a bang and start 2020 with less than 30K in debt.

    2019 Starting Debt: $45,414.70
    November Debt Paid: $892.82
    Current Debt: $33,348.80
    Debt Smackdown: $12,065.90 / $15,000

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    • zoebby I can't imagine quitting was easy, but good job holding your ground! Working in a place that has a poor outlook for its employees can be draining, in more ways than one, and makes it almost impossible to put your best efforts forward. Your new job is lucky to have you! :)

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    • zoebby Congrats for sticking to your ethics and still managing to keep paying down the debt!!

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  • December and 2019 final check-in: $2300 paid this month, putting the Smack Down grand total at $28,133, which is 5% over my original goal! Okay, ready to move onto 2020 and another $28,000 paid off! 

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    • Pay Me To Draw Woo! Congratulations! 🎉 Ahead of your goal for 2019 is the best way to walk into 2020 - you know what they say about hindsight! ;)

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    • Pay Me To Draw WAHOO!!! WAY TO GO!!!

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    • Pay Me To Draw Oh wow, Congratulations!!!!!! I am so glad i found this forum.  So happy you are making major progress on paying down your debt. 

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  • December update and last update for the year! I made quite a lot of progress on the Mortgage this year and super proud of the results especially when you take into account of my savings challenge running concurrently. 

    • Starting Balance (January  2019): $69,112.11
    • Current Balance: $57,271.06
    • Paid Off this Year: $11,841.05

    Overall Progress Update:

    • Starting Balance (April 2018): $74,400.00
    • Total Paid Off: $17,128.94

    Next year though, I have another beast to add to my debt payoff challenge...a car loan (RIP my Corolla). I want to make sure that thing is nuked ASAP so I can get back to the more fun goals.

    Everyone have a Happy Holidays and I'll be seeing ya next year!  🥳

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    • Madkat-Z Look at that progress, and in addition to the savings challenge! Congrats. You'll tackle the car loan same way!

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    • Madkat-Z That is amazing. Keep up the great work. Truly inspiring.

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  • Okay. A slightly late November update. I spent all month dreading making this post because I didn't want to admit I'd failed my November goal. 

    Basically, my significant other lost his job at the end of October and wasn't able to find anything until last week. So my extra paycheck  for November that was supposed to go towards my debt ended up going towards covering our rent/bills/etc while he was unemployed. We made it through the month, and he has a job now, but the entire month was wholly disappointing for my budget. I was able to scrape through with a $200 payment towards my debt and am trying to keep a $400 chunk intact through December so I can finish out the year sort of strong. It survived my Black Friday and Cyber Monday shopping, which I knew i couldn't afford but also just couldn't resist. It did make me realize that I do really have a problem with spending money when I'm not feeling good about myself. It is what it is. I'm considering adding another part time job to my schedule but hopefully it won't come to that. 

     

    My fingers are crossed for a Christmas miracle this year haha :P I think I might still be able to swing a good year-end debt payment if I buckle down and stop with my damn overspending! 

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    • SiruhTheSantas I totally hear you on the overspending when you can’t afford it. My strategies lately have been a mixture of: 1) bargaining with myself (you can only buy this IF you [something ridiculously impossible to achieve] - resulting in me accepting that I can therefore *not* buy whatever it is); 2) encouraging myself (I know you really want that [usually unnecessary foodstuff] but you’ve had a rough day and some [nutritionally superior foodstuff that I have in the fridge at home] will be much better for you and won’t make the scales be mean tomorrow - it will only take a moment to drive past the store and you’ll be home in no time and can eat straight away. You can do this Rose, keep driving on the road, pass the turn off to the store car park - there you go, you did great! Now doesn’t that feel better? Both your budget AND your diet intact?; or 3) pulling out the big guns and reminding myself that I better just be careful because if I can’t pay that balance in full by the due date then there’s plastic surgery on the CC and I don’t get a new one till July 2021! 
      With these 3 methods I’ve been able to slash the overspending massively, which considering my income has halved this year while my expenses haven’t, has been kind of essential.

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    • SiruhTheSantas You adjusted your plan for the curve ball life threw. Glad to hear things are looking up! Dealing with all that happened, and still throwing the chunk toward debt is progress. My strategy for not overspending is adding it to a list in my phone, and waiting a few days. And if I can't remember what inspired the want, I don't need it. 😂

      It's hard this time of year! You might get a chuckle out of this Break-Up Letter to Black Friday.

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    • SiruhTheSantas Congrats on making it through the bump in the road. You've survived, you can dust yourself off, and keep moving. KNOWING that you spend when you aren't feeling good is the first step to making different choices. Without that awareness, you'll stay stuck in the same pattern. My BF does the same thing, and it's taken slow continual awareness to make changes and break the habit. He still does on occasion, but no where near as bad as he used to. I know you'll be able to shift that habit faster than he has because you're actually working with the budget! I just keep up with his numbers and report to him because it still freaks him out to deal with money. We are making progress, though, and so I know you can, too!

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  • I'm late to the party, but I will be on this for next year right away.  I got divorced last year and I racked up a lot of debt during the divorce, between supporting myself and my ex husband during the 6 months that the divorce got dragged out for, the money I had to pay him to finalize the divorce, and my lawyer's fees.  It's been a rough year. 

    I took Dave Ramsey's FPU in May, right as my divorce was finalized, because I  knew I didn't want to pay this HEL I had to take to pay off my ex over the 20 years of the formal loan agreement.  I had done Dave Ramsey's plan awhile ago, but didn't really stick with it, kept paying my expenses with credit cards, being a  month behind on my bills due to that, never saved an emergency fund (I have credit cards for that!  Hence why I had to go in debt during my emergency...oh, that's what an emergency fund is supposed to prevent...) and now I'm back in debt.  I spent this whole year following his plan much more closely this time around, getting gazelle intense to pay off my debt, and I'm glad I did that this year, although I am modifying my plan in the future, but that's for another post.

     

    My total debts were:

    $1368 Energy loan

    $2000 loan from my  parents to give my ex spending money during the divorce

    $25000 Home equity loan taken to fund divorce settlement and pay off my credit card balance from supporting two households for 6 months while in crisis mode

    TOTAL: $28368

    I didn't make a goal this year except to pay off as much as possible, but I did plan during the summer to pay off half my HEL in 6 months, which would be in Jan, and now I'm going to reach that goal early, by the end of this year.  However, I just refinanced my mortgage and so I got a free month without a mortgage, so that helped me to reach that goal.  By next week I should receive my escrow refund from my old mortgage and reach that goal, although it technically is just moving some money from my HEL into my new mortgage, but it's nearly half the interest rate so I'll take it.

     

    My balance at the beginning of Dec is $14360 and by the end of this year it should be down to <$12k.

     

    Hope to see you all next year for another smackdown.  

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    • Glad to have you join us, PhysicsGal . Here's to 2020!

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    • PhysicsGal I know it's tough. Been there. You have a fork in the road and are now going in a new direction. It isn't free from bumps, but it is a hell of a lot smoother than the broken gravel road you've been travelling. There is a very big light ahead of you beckoning you to aim towards. Keep on moving forward, stay positive, and you will feel freer, happier, and more content with your life. When you are feeling low, hopeless, frustrated, or alone, then reach out to someone. I'm bad at that. I don't want to bother people, but I've learned that friends want to help you and you need to let them. Stay strong. :)

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    • PhysicsGal refinancing and getting to skip that mortgage payment for a month is really nice! Glad you put it to good use! It sounds like you're on track, and 2020 will be a big year. Here's to onward and upward!

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  • So, I don't know if I ever posted here at all this year. It's been a rough one. Moved twice. Job losses for both me and my husband. Roommates [that we thought were friends] screwing us out of a good chunk of change. We're finally starting to get caught up after moving away from them back in mid-October. We've managed to rack up more debt, through no fault of our own, but, at the same time, we've been able to put a decent dent into some of that extra debt. 

    I should hopefully be able to put a total of 1k towards debt for this month and it looks like we'll be hitting 11k in paid off expenses.  

    ** One win since moving away from the roommates: we've been able to save the exact amount of our rent and then pay it on the due date, in FULL. I emphasize the word *full* because, when we were living with them, nothing was ever paid on time. Just in rental late fees alone, I dished out an extra 1300. That doesn't include late fees on utilities or anything else. I am so glad that we got out of that situation**

    Here's hoping that 2020 is a better year and also curious if there will be another debt challenge. These have kept me extremely motivated over the years and looking forward to yet another one. 

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    • Aerie That sounds like an absolute rental roommate nightmare (cue reality tv title). I'm sorry you went through that, but I'm happy you made it out! It looks like things are already moving in a better direction, which leaves the door wide open for 2020! 

      There will be another debt challenge, but we're looking into how best to support it. It will be posted by the new year! :)

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  • I think somebody posted about an online debt tracker but this is a long thread. I'd like to see something visual to watch my debt go down apart from a spreadsheet. Any ideas?

    I plan on making a piece of art like the adult colouring books to track my progress by colouring. On the podcast Jesse interviewed the founder of Map My Progress who produces colouring canvases to track progress, so that inspired me to make my own.

    With the Christmas season theme, I have been thinking about what the four Advent candles mean: Hope, Love, Joy, Peace and how they relate to budgeting.

    • I have hope that my life will be so much better once my debt is gone, hope that I will get there, and hope that I will learn so much along the way which will change my behaviour.
    • I am feeling love through this process: love for being able to engage in a positive community of people all trying to achieve similar goals, love for myself for taking stock of what is important in life, and the love of contentment that has come from the empowered feeling I have of finally getting control of my finances. Definitely feeling the love of YNAB!!
    • Joy is similar to love, but also the joy I will feel when I can start farming my Wishlist, investing, and attacking my mortgage versus paying down consumer debt.
    • And finally peace, which is all of the above but also a true zen-like peace from being free of debt and the emotions that are tied to it. All that debt represents my past: past mistakes, past over-indulgences, past self-soothing to cope with grief, past self-soothing to cope with starting a new life after divorce, past survival expenses stemming from a medical leave, past keeping-up-with-the-jones, past unintentional spending, past purchases for my children since I felt guilty being away from them rather than just spending quality time with them. Like many people have been saying about just wanting student debt gone so they can get on with their lives, I want my debt gone so I can truly get on with mine. The past debt is like a ball & chain: financially, emotionally, & psychologically. Getting rid of it will bring me peace. Peace that I will finally on my way to financial security. ❤️
    Like 9
    • Purple Foal I love framing budgeting this way! 😍 Thank you for sharing your lovely words. Wishing you hope, love, joy & peace in your journey. We'll be here to cheer you on!

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    • Nicole  Thank you! Same to you! :)

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    • Purple Foal I love this idea! And your reframe is amazing. I think THAT is what will get you out of debt. If you believe and really feel that it is possible, then it will be. If you still live in the mindset that it isn't possible then it never will be.
      I agree that it would be awesome to have a visual on the debt smackdown. I know that excel can create graphs and other visuals from data in spreadsheets, I have no idea if google can handle those kinds of calculations as well. Does anyone know?

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    • farfromtheusual Thank you! I have been listening to a lot of podcasts and money is probably 10% math and 90% psychology. Our behaviour is huge. Today they were talking about how nobody talks about the emotions and pain people go through that often cause debts & poor choices.

      I reposted my Advent thoughts on my journal and somebody commented with https://undebt.it/ so will check that out. :) 

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    • Purple Foal I agree, and I wish that it was discussed more. I think YNAB could do even more to address the mindset piece. There are some good books that do, one of my favorites is Money: A Love Story.

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    • farfromtheusual I'll check that out. I've listened to all the YNAB podcasts. Yes, all, like a crazy person, or a focused person. And mental strife wasn't acknowledged. Jesse is great & hates debt, but can't really relate since he's only been $300 in debt for one month and then a mortgage he paid off before he was 30. I don't know where all these cheap houses are but they certainly aren't in the large Metro areas. Where I live, you can't get a condo for less than $800k. I don't know how younger people can cope. I'm lucky that I own my home and only have $166k left on it which I will attack after my LOC debt and end of my car lease. I will drive this car for 10 years and then start a car fund once I have bought out the lease. 

      YNAB should definitely look more into the psychology of people's debt and maybe do a podcast series about the link between mental illnesses and poor finances. Mental illnesses can be serious like cancer, or less serious, like a cold. If you are going through a really rough patch mentally, then it's temporary, but the ramifications of feeling overwhelmed, situationally depressed, anxious, and not sleeping are all side effects of that patch. Throw in poor money choices and self-soothing coping mechanisms, and then that "cold" can infect your finances. I know when I was grieving my Dad, my coping mechanism was wine and takeout. A couple of years later, the same grieving cycle around the anniversary was shopping. One thing that was said on the podcast https://jessicamoorhouse.com/ep-212-money-effect-mental-health-melanie-lockert/ was that people don't usually pay attention to their spending when they are in pain. :)

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      • Mx Emmin
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      Purple Foal I feel that. I remember being really disappointed when Jesse talked about  his salary before starting YNAB and  how  much debt he had. Ok, he didnt have endless riches, but I felt like he talked about being worse off than he was.

      Mental health has been something I've struggled with for a long time and I'm sure its driven a lot of my poorer decisions. Once I pay off the CC I'm closing them, I don't think I'm the kind of person that should have access to credit...

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    • Purple Foal have you thought about writing something yourself? It sounds like you have started the research portion already just for your own knowledge. It could be something that brings an income for you once written, as it is a big topic, and one many will suffer with.

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    • WairereRose Why thank you. There are many blogs & books out there already. I have just been keeping a journal in YNAB. But who knows. Most books come after the journey and from the journals during the process. Follow me if you're interested in my journey. :)

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    • Mx Emmin Keeping your credit cards with a zero balance will positively affect your credit score. If you are tempted though, cut them up but don't cancel them. Maybe make some kind of visual reminder of the ramifications of spirally out of control and into debt. Focus on changing your mindset: that credit is just a tool. Change your behaviour: plan intentional spending & use the card as cash and pay it off immediately when used. Change your outlook: that was me in the past, but the me now & in the future will control how I use credit and not let it control me. :)

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    • Purple Foal I have taken you up on that offer.

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    • WairereRose Enjoy my ramblings! lol

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      • Mx Emmin
      • Orchid_Banjo.5
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      Purple Foal even in the uk? I know American and English credit scores work a little differently... admittedly I've never checked my C.S. but mine shouldn't be bad as I've missed a payment, had a CCJ or an IVA or been bankrupt. Also, I'm told in America some (most?) Landlords and Employers credit check when you apply, but I've never run into that in the UK.... it is on my mind though that if I ever buy something like a laptop or a holiday I might be best running it through a credit card for protection purposes. 

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    • Purple Foal actually, having too little credit usage can hurt your credit score. 🙄 It sounds stupid, but here in the US they like to see about 10% of credit utilized, so they'd rather not see zeros across the board on all of your credit accounts. It's really backwards, and I don't really agree with it, but it is the way it is. When the BF paid off a huge chunk of his debt this year we actually saw his credit score drop about 30 points. It has gone back up, but slowly. It's down right silly the things that they think aren't positive.

      I agree, the mental aspect of it is huge. And as soon as I let go of the angst around the debt, it has made a big difference in my ability to pay it off. Every now and then my BF gets upset that he's carrying debt, and I remind him that it's not actually costing him anything right now, and that it is saving us a lot because we are able to keep up with the regular expenses without adding anything to the debt, which would cost us a lost more. He gets agitated about it, but I just keep chipping away at it and don't worry about it. The mental aspect is HUGE though, and I think prolongs the debt and hinders the ability to get out of it efficiently when you are wrestling with the 'no money' mentality. I know that this is a big part of why my BF has struggled so much over the years (and still does sometimes).

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    • farfromtheusual here in NZ having unused credit affects the score because it reflects potential debt you could have. Better to close cards you aren’t using so that they can see you “should” stay within your means.

      Like 2
    • WairereRose   Yeah I don't really have any clue of different rules. Best to check it out in your own country, and even then the rules often change.  But the big picture item is that getting rid of your debt will positively affect your life!! A credit score really is just an indicator of how risky you are to a lender. I listened to a podcast recently about Cdn scores, and the banks / lenders actually look at scores different from what we as consumers see and then there are 2 bureaus, and that lenders report to one of the two, not both. So all kind of confusing. 

      Like 3
  • I know 2019 is over but i am going to participate in this challenge in 2020. I am sick of my debt and i am ready to tackle it. I need encouragement and also to know i am not alone, 
    that there are supportive people here who will not judge me. Here's a list of CC i would like to tackle in 2020. I know i can't pay off all the cards in 2020 but this is a wake up call for me. My total CC debt is Total-$22796

    PERSONAL LOAN:     $1830
    AMEX:                          $2498
    MACY'S:                       $3255
    AMEX:                          $3701
    PAYPAL:                        $3770
    VISA:                              $7742

    Like 10
    • Tomato Moose I love your attitude! You'll be in good company with the rest of us in 2020! :)

      Like 3
    • Tomato Moose You'll be hanging out with the rest of us, so you are not alone!

      You've got several cards that aren't all that large, so that's a good thing. Between now and the beginning of the year you can look at what you want to pay off, if you want to snowball from lowest to highest, and if you have any opportunities available to you to get zero percent balance transfers anywhere else that might help reduce your interest load so that you can pay down more. That's how I keep my debt manageable, and it makes a HUGE difference. See you in the new year!

      Like 3
    • Tomato Moose 2019 is close to the end, but it isn't over. If you start now instead of waiting for another 20 days, you will already be out of the gate when 2020 hits. You've taken the first step by posting your debt, I would encourage you to come back at the end of December with an update (even as you add those figures to the beginning of the 2020 thread) - anything that keeps you looking forward already rather than taking a breather to get ready to start will help you begin to move in the right direction rather than the wrong one. As farfromtheususal said, decide what order you want to tackle things. If you haven't explored snowball payments, the snowflake technique, and a myriad of other options, now is the time to immerse yourself in learning a new lingo and telling your brain that you're already in debt paydown mode. Welcome to the thread and the group! We wish you every success for the rest of this year, and for the one ahead.

      Like 4
    • Faness Thank you!

      Like 1
    • farfromtheusual Thank you for your kind words and advice. I was thinking exactly that, i will pay my cards from the lowest to the highest as i listed them. I have other cards that are paid off and i will look for those zero percent balance transfer offers to those cards that i get in the mail as well. Thanks again.

      Like 2
    • WairereRose Thank you so much. I keep reading your messages of encouragement and all the advice and they give me strength that i can do this. I get paid twice a month and I will put whatever i have left plus whatever i get from selling a few items toward debt in December as well. One of my AMEX will eat up most of that money because the minimum payment on that card is $600 for the month of december, Then in January i will tackle the cards from lowest to highest. Thanks again

      Like 2
    • Tomato Moose As stated above, your numbers aren't that bad but they probably feel overwhelming to you. That's the thing about personal finance, it's personal. But you are in the right place and have taken the right step to make paying them off a priority. Debt repayment in Dec will be harder. Even if you just get all organized and in the right mindset than that is huge. Check out https://undebt.it/ which was just recommended to me. I have one large debt $29k that I want to pay off before it's up for the renewal in 3 years. I want to use that website to work out my extra payments and increased payment options and how it will shorten the length of the debt! :)

      Like 4
    • Purple Foal Thank you! I will check out that tool in details. From what i've seen It seems great.

      Like 1
    • Tomato Moose It is good but brace yourself from seeing that big debt as a bill with a long journey ahead to pay it off. That's how I felt last night. Kinda disheartening when I added up all my categories vs my income and am short the snowball I thought I would have from all my cuts. I'm living way lower than I was before but I guess I still have ways to go. :)

      Like 4
    • Tomato Moose Don't let me put you off though!! I will totally be along side you and the rest of this massive group of people trying to get out of debt. We need to stay positive and hack away at it. :)

      Like 3
    • Tomato Moose Those zero interest transfers are fantastic at giving you a way to work through the debt. I like to roll as much debt as possible into them to get the payment down to a reasonable amount, particularly if it clears a couple of cards. As long as you are diligent about NOT using those cards again, keep them empty because it helps your credit score. If you can't manage to pay off 100% of the transfer by the end of the promo period, roll it into another balance transfer for another zero interest period. Most of those empty cards will be clamoring to get you to use them again so they'll be sending you promos by that time, and it will give you another place to roll the debt. I'm about to do this with my BF's last outstanding debt again. His promo period is up in February, I think, so I'll roll it over to one of his other cards that's been empty for a while now and keep chipping away at it. It'll eventually be gone and in the mean time we won't be stressed about trying to make huge payments. The credit card companies are all a game... when you can turn the tables on them and game them back is when you can win!

      Like 4
    • Purple Foal :) No worries, you are not putting me off, if anything it tells me it's not going to be easy and i am bracing myself. Hang in there, there will be light at the end of the tunnel.

      Like 1
    • farfromtheusual Thanks, now i get it :) Thanks for explaining in detail about one of the way i can go about doing this. After i put all my balances in the undebtit app, i was overwhelmed by the amount of interests i will have to pay so your explanation is really helpful.

      Like 2
    • Tomato Moose Just be careful about the zero balance transfer. I did one once and ended up getting charged a separate cash advance fee!

      Like 2
    • Purple Foal I will definitely do more research about the fees and make sure i understand all the jargon before i make my decision.

      Like 1
    • Tomato Moose Good for you. I wasn't in the right head space and didn't have the resources at the time to help me. Maybe throw a poll out there for the cards & the balance transfer details to get others' opinions before you do. It's hard to see things clearly when we are feeling overwhelmed. :)

      Like 2
    • Tomato Moose yes! I'm so glad! As Purple Foal mentioned you need to be sure that you know the terms. Many of them will just charge a 3% 'transfer fee' but then you have zero % for the duration of the promo period. You do need to be sure to transfer the balance to a different promo/card before the end of that period to avoid any additional interest, but it's not difficult to game the system in order to get ahead. Not having interest makes a huge difference at chipping away at debt!

      Like 3
    • Purple Foal Tomato Moose I've had really great success with Capital One cards, and their zero interest balance transfers. They have really nice rewards cards, they are usually fairly generous with giving cards to people with credit that isn't super strong, and I REALLY appreciate their online interface a LOT better than almost any other credit card I've dealt with. I might be biased since they were one of the first, but I find their online system to be easier to understand and use than the others. Some are really confusing, and I don't appreciate that as a consume trying to get OUT of debt. I actually have 3 cards with them now because they are so easy to work with.

      Like 2
    • farfromtheusual Purple Foal Getting really great information from this site. I started looking into the offers i have with the Credit Cards i already have, some of them i haven't used in more than a year and they have a zero balance thank god. I definitely need to contact them because i don't see any cash advance fee mentioned on the offers but i wanted to be sure. Any idea if Capital One charge a cash advance fee? I am happy to say i paid about $1100 toward my debt from my last paycheck in December, I will post my update to see how much of that went to the principal. 

      Like 3
    • Tomato Moose That's amazing! Yes be very clear of any catches. You want to move forward & a glitch like that would be a setback, especially psychologically when you are focused on your goal. Best to talk to them. What are your interest amounts on your cards? Maybe after making the balance transfer(s) cancel the cards. Probably best to only have one or two to use & pay off consistently. Now that I'm a YNAB addict, I pay my cards off every week. I know the money is there to pay the bill and don't like to see the balance high. I'm out of that credit card float and now I wonder why I ever played that game. YNAB really is an eye opener. :)

      Like 2
      • MXMOM
      • MXMOM
      • 2 wk ago
      • 4
      • Reported - view

      Purple Foal Tomato Moose we do our balance transfers with MBNA as they are usually the only ones offering it. They usually charge a 3% transfer fee which Is equivalent to 3% annual interest if its a 12 month offer. In actuality it is more than 3% annualized because they charge it upfront on the whole balance but the lowest regular unsecured funds we have are over 5% so it is still cheaper. And for a 6 month 0% deal it usually is not worth it for us because we can access funds at less than 6%. 
      Our bank (CIBC) recently offered a 0% deal on a card we don’t really use any more and it was a 1% transfer deal so we did that. 
      but make sure you do not miss the minimum payment due date. That happened to us with MBNA and if you do that, the offer is cancelled and their ridiculous 22% interest applies. I was making the payment through the bank and it was taking almost 2 weeks for the payment to be applied. Makes me suspect they slow it down to zap you but maybe I’m just being paranoid. Anyway I arranged with MBNA to automatically take the payment from my account. That way I am never late. 
      finally, don’t use the balance transfer card for any purchases. Any. Ever. At least while you are riding a 0% promo. Otherwise your payments may go to the zero balance amount and the new stuff gets hit with the 22%. 
      so in summary 

      1. understand the terms

      2. ensure the APR interest rate when factoring in the balance transfer fee is better than other money you can access

      3. make sure you don’t miss any payments

      4. have a plan in place of where the balance at the end of the promo period (if any) will go

      5. Make more than the minimum payments. 

      6. check out undebt.it to help plan the most effective payoff order. It automatically lets you compare which is the best plan for you. For me I was doing the lowest balance first but I now only have have 2 debts and they are bounced around from different offers. Per undebt.it I am doing the avalanche method. I have posted the comparison screenshot. Btw undebt.it is free or there is a $12 per year option that syncs with YNAB plus some other differences. I used the free option for a few years and recently went with the paid option. Some extra features (I don’t sync with YNAB any more) but mainly a warm feeling of supporting someone’s hard work. And right now until Jan 5 I believe, there is a 33% ($4) off sale.

      Like 4
    • MXMOM what a great summary - thank you!

      Like 2
    • MXMOM Great summary indeed! Maybe copy & paste it with the new 2020 thread starts. 

      For undebt.it is there a way to reconcile my debt total? It has been different than what my bank is stating.

      Like 2
      • MXMOM
      • MXMOM
      • 2 wk ago
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      • Reported - view

      Purple Foal undebt.it is not that sophisticated. From what I have learned and been told by the developer the way to fix that is simply to update the account balance on the individual debt’s details. There is a current balance field that you just change.

      Like 2
    • MXMOM I was going to make a post about using zero percent offers in your favor, but you just wrote it way better than I could! Could you move this over to another category, someone suggested to me to post it in the tips and tricks category, and I'll add my own comments there? No sense in reinventing the wheel when you've already done such an amazing job!

      Like 3
      • MXMOM
      • MXMOM
      • 2 wk ago
      • 2
      • Reported - view

      farfromtheusual thanks. I will let YNAB moderators decide if they want me to cross post. maybe Faness can look into it. 

      Like 2
    • MXMOM I hope you can!!

      Like 1
    • MXMOM Thanks for all the info that was such a great summary. I signed up to undebt.it as well and chose the snowball method and i can't wait to start seeing my debt go down as i pay it, great motivation

      Like 2
    • MXMOM Definitely make a post of this info! I think it will help a ton of folks.

      If you want to make the post, I can add the link to the full post into your comment above so future folks who see it can join in on the conversation!

      Like 2
  • This year has been so bad. I love reading everyone's updates, though. I'm seriously torn because I'm in a career (and job) I love, but after this year, I'm not sure I can stay. We did not come close to meeting our goal. My husband lost his biggest client (read 70% of his self-employment income) at the end of summer, after losing his moderately consistent third-largest in the spring, and we have been living paycheck to three paychecks from now since. He's been doing rideshare to supplement, but honestly it buys groceries and gas, not much else. That's still a blessing though. I'm at least one credit card payment in arrears at this point on three cards. Not 30 days yet, but it almost seems inevitable. I haven't updated in a while because I didn't want to be a Debbie Downer. I've loved reading everyone's updates though and MAZEL TOV to everyone who made (is making) their 2019 goal! I love seeing DEBT FREE anywhere I can! 

    We are both battling depression and burnout, but we are still YNAB'ing religiously...or were, until the credit card that auto-bills for YNAB declined the annual fee (*laughs in hysteria*). Now struggling with whether (and how) to pay that expense that's usually budgeted-for. The moral of this story is twofold: (1) Don't be afraid to change your life, but cross-country moves to high COLA metros are NOT for the faint of heart; and (2) Entrepreneurship has never been a bed of roses. Sigh. We will see you in 2020! Happy Holidays all!

    Like 6
    • Slate Blue Vacuum kudos to you for staying present despite the hardship. It IS hard. Depression and burnout are serious things wrangle with when the finances are deeply in the red. I hope things turn around for you soon!!!

      Like 5
    • Slate Blue Vacuum it won't help much, but (((Hugs))).

      Like 3
      • MXMOM
      • MXMOM
      • 2 wk ago
      • 4
      • Reported - view

      Slate Blue Vacuum I had my own business for 12 years and financially it was a bad bad decision that I started for the right reasons and then held on way to long because I couldn’t figure out how to extract myself. I (almost?) had a nervous breakdown and we are still paying the financial price today. I have a full time job that I don’t hate but don’t love either but it has pros that other jobs may not have. I am 53 now and am not going to chase the dream anymore. I may try blogging as a way to share my thoughts and maybe make a few dollars but due to my job, I can’t use my professional training to make extra money and I will have to tread carefully with the blog to ensure I don’t get in trouble with work. A fairly successful blogger/podcaster recently was forced to decide between her job and her podcast despite previously being told it was ok. She crossed a line and they forced her to choose. She chose her podcast partly because of her integrity and bad feelings about being forced into that decision. I am too old and too fragile to go through that process. So my extensive knowledge will have to stay locked into my brain and not shared publicly which means my blog will probably be lame but who knows. 

      all of this to say that it’s impossible to see the future but also hard to let go of the past. 
      I do have an inspirational quote by my desk that says something like “I can do anything for a while” so maybe you will have to make some career changes for now to stabilize financially and then when you are FREE you can do what you were born to do.

      Like 4
      • Slate Blue Vacuum
      • Trying to ignore the Joneses
      • Slate_Blue_Vacuum.5
      • 2 wk ago
      • 2
      • Reported - view

      MXMOM Hah. I'm not self-employed, my husband is. I wish. We have been round and round the "get a job bush" for years. He's an entrepreneur, it's in his blood. His dad has been for 40+ years. It is AWFUL. I hate it. I want to work for myself, but only because I could make FAR more money than he does in my profession and I'm better at doing the responsible things, but we can't both be self-employed what with insurance and I'm also working on student loan repayment.

      His being self-employed (OVERSHARE AHEAD) has caused me more stress, more physical illness, more grey hairs, caused so much of my hair to fall out, and MORE WORK than any two jobs even paying less could EVER have done. I do the taxes, I do the budget, I keep on him about everything that he doesn't see as "fun." And I'm the one constantly going after raises and trying to find more ways to stretch our 3 months of plenty to cover the 9 months of lean. I technically need to stay in my job because I qualify for student loan forgiveness and the work-life balance makes the times when he travels less stressful. But yes, I agree with you 100000%.

      Like 2
  • Has anybody found any good podcasts about getting out of debt? Post them here!

    I'm GenX, not a Millennial, but I appreciate good sound advice and I've been listening to podcasts by Jessicamoorhouse.com lately after exhausting the YNAB archive. 😆

    https://jessicamoorhouse.com/ep-212-money-effect-mental-health-melanie-lockert/

    https://jessicamoorhouse.com/ep-116-how-a-shopping-ban-could-help-refocus-your-finances-with-cait-flanders/

    https://jessicamoorhouse.com/millennial-money-meetup-3/  (Millennial Money Meetup #3: Conscious Consumption, Minimalism & Shopping Bans)

     

    https://jessicamoorhouse.com/free-money-challenges/

    Like 2
  • December Update:

    Literally 10 minutes ago I paid of the last of my CC dept! (821,82€).

    I got paid today plus I got the first payment of my student loan. After crunching the numbers I decided to pay off that CC and start "fresh" without consumer dept. Or more like "able to afford rent and food" kinda dept.

    Now of course I will be adding dept by having the student loan. And I won't track it until it will be in it's payment phase (which will start october 2021). But of course I will then be joining this thread again, because it is really motivating!

    I wish you all the best and I'm hoping to not see familier names in this thread, because that means you all have paid off your depts!

    Until then :)

    Like 6
    • Aquamarine Storm Good job!!!!!

      Like 2
    • Aquamarine Storm Congrats! Keep the motivation going for your student debt! Then save for future cars, trips, retirement, investments, wishfarm items....

      Like 1
    • Aquamarine Storm wahooo!!! Way to go!!!

      Like 1
  • December check-in

    I am on track to overshoot my payoff goal this year!! Which baffles me because when I set the goal I really didn't know where we would find the money. But I started using the goal feature in my budget and it's been a tremendous help. It really helped me to put more priority to making sure the dollars were put there. Although we still have a long way to getting the car loan completely paid, I am so happy that I joined this group and worked hard to eat away at the debt. 

    Like 5
    • Salmon Elk Way to go! I'm gonna try that goal feature too. I added a line to my debt category for Lump Sum Attack. Adding a bit here & there and then paying a lumpsum when I have $100 will be great. :)

      Like 2
      • Mx Emmin
      • Orchid_Banjo.5
      • 1 mth ago
      • 2
      • Reported - view

      Salmon Elk congrats!

      Like 2
    • Salmon Elk Awesome!!!

      Like 2
  • So impressed by everyone who is reaching their goals. Congrats to everyone who has made big strides this year!

    I can't help but be a little disappointed in myself this year. I only paid off $8,400, which was way under my goal of $20,000. But at least I'm moving in the right direction. I've also been working at getting a full month buffered, so that's taken a little bit away from my debt pay down.

    I decided not to pay any extra debt this month because I have a big work trip coming up that I know won't be reimbursed for a while, so hopefully I can make a bigger payment when I get that money back eventually. 

    Like 7
    • MoneyMonster last year I made 43% of my goal. There were big changes in the year which messed everything up for me, but like you, I felt really disappointed. Look at your situation and if there were some things beyond your control, be kind to yourself about them and consider that at least you’re moving forward in your journey and not backward. If there wasn’t anything that stopped you reaching your goal, then see if you can work out why you haven’t been as passionate about this as you could have been, and how you can challenge that for yourself for next year. Was your goal not big enough? Sometimes if things look too easy we don’t have that sense of urgency. Was it too big? If it’s beyond unrealistic we may give up before we start. 

      Like 2
    • WairereRose Good points! Also, MoneyMonster working at getting a full month buffered, and being conservative with debt payments because of upcoming expenses is just smart. Give yourself credit, and by credit it's good credit, or KUDOS! You are taking steps forward in changing your behaviour. Once you feel like you are on solid ground, then the attacking will be easier. You've got this! :)

      Like 1
    • MoneyMonster Sometimes the priorities have to shift. Having money buffered will prevent you from going further into debt in the future. It's a balancing act to keep enough money in the accounts to cover emergencies, and also keep paying enough to the debt that it's not costing you more than you're paying. It's a fine line to walk, so congrats for sticking with it. You are setting yourself up to be able to make some great strides in 2020 and that's a good thing!

      Like 3
  • Dec check-in: $917.81 paid (includes P&I)

    My final #s are in for the year.  This year I paid $14,622.52 toward debt, which was 97.48% of my goal set for the year $15,000. Part of me is tempted to try to pay the difference to get me up to 100%, but I am down to 13 days cash on hand from being usually over 30 for most of the year, so I am going to let my cash stay put and celebrate pretty darn good. I am also celebrating that in 2019 (knock on wood with the rest of December left and low age of money) I did not put any expenses on credit card  that I did not have the money for (aka increase my credit card outstanding balance). This is probably the first year that has happened since 2010. Wow.

    Since starting the debt smackdown challenge in March 2018, I have reduced my outstanding debt by $14,931.64. Of that, my credit balance outstanding was reduced by $6,985.83. I remember how flailing and hopeless I felt with amount of debt I had when I started. I am so thankful for this challenge, those who participate and share their financial wisdom and experiences.  A special shout out to HappyDance , whose posts help me think about money and finances in new and helpful ways.

    Congrats to all who smacked down all their debt in 2019! I look forward to taking the challenge again in 2020 and smacking down more of my debt. Cheers!

    Like 8
    • Hot Pink Admiral Incredible!! I'll see you in 2020 with a focus on my debt! :)

      Like 2
    • Hot Pink Admiral Awesome! That's huge! And kudos to you for NOT paying off that tiny bit extra and potentially causing more debt in the future!

      Like 2
      • HappyDance
      • YNABing consistently since 2014
      • HappyDance
      • 1 mth ago
      • 4
      • Reported - view

      Hot Pink Admiral 

      O.M.G.  What a fantastic and awesome result.  Big High Five with a resounding *crack* on your smack-down numbers.

      (I'm totally basking in the glow of unexpected appreciation and praise here. I don't know what I said exactly -- I'm a verbose individual -- but I'm  so glad  that some of it helped you out. That's the best part of the YNAB forums.)

      Like 4
  • December checkin: I joined in October. I've increased my payments from $123 biweekly, to $63 weekly, then $75 weekly, and today $100 weekly. I've made lumpsum payments totally $1300. I'm allowed $7500 lumpsum payments per year, so I'm going to try to try to add a bit more for 2019, but I am in the process of buffering my categories to get a month ahead which is a better focus, according to the YNAB podcasts. I've put my debt into Undebt.it so now I am laser focused on watching the debt go down and the payoff date decrease from 5 years to under 3. Today's balance: $28,759.60

    Like 7
    • Purple Foal Awesome!! Way to go!! That's huge!

      Like 1
  • Alright... here's the final debt payment updates for the year:

                                  Nov Balance    Payments             Current Bal            

    Mastercard:      $778.46          -$61.00                 $717.46       

    Visa:                     $971.75                                              $971.75

    TOTAL:            $1727.42                                            $1689.21

     

    Not nearly as much progress as I wanted to make, and that sits right at the same amount of debt that I've had for years. So at least I'm not back sliding all that much. I'm still sad that it isn't better than this. But I'll keep chipping away at it, who knows what next year will bring. Here's to seeing all you lovely people in 2020 again.

    Like 5
  • Dec - Final Check in for the year!  December is going out with a whimper like the last 3 months have, not being able to pay as much on my debt as I'd like but I did get above all the minimums:  total of $1890.54.

    My 2019 goal for paying was $22,000, I managed to pay $28,711!  My results:

    Total Debt as of 1/10/2019

    Personal Loan @ 9.75% - 4,153 -- GONE

    Visa CC @8.99%  - 12,084  --  NOW:  $7456

    Auto Loan @2.24%   -  19,875  --  NOW: $13,478

    Mortgage @3.24%  - 146,318  --  NOW:  $138,590

    Store CC @0% - 643 -- GONE

    Total:  $183,073

    NEW TOTAL:  $159,524

     

    Next years goal will be to pay off the Visa and Auto Loan! 

    See you all in the New Year!! 

    Like 7
    • Grey Tux WTG! You left your goal for dead. Based on this year you will be able to easily clear the CC and Auto loan. Maybe you can steam ahead and knock the mortgage down to a rounder number too. Well done.

      Like
  • December Check-In

    Paid $550 this month. Beginning balances vs end of the year balances are:

    Credit Card: $12,360 -> $3,100 = -$9,260

    Construction Loan: $4,562 -> $3,950 = - $612

    Medical Loan: $2,110 -> $1,900=  - $210

    Total debt paid this year: $10,082 = 81.57% of my $12,360 goal

    Didn't quite make it this year, but I'll try again next year! With only $8,950 in debt remaining I am optimistic I can knock it all out in 2020. 

    Like 9
    • The Goat Queen wahoo! You are really close! We'll see you again next year!

      Like 1
  • That's still super good and you didn't go backwards! Just keep swimming :)

    Like 1
  • My last check for December comes on 12/30. It's not budgeted in advance, but early projections show that NOTHING will go to debt lol. But, this is why checking in is important. After all my whining and moaning. After everything that went HORRENDOUSLY wrong this year, we still paid off $12,838 of debt. We still killed a car note, paid off both of our home improvement credit card purchases before the 0% APR expired (~$4420- Home depot; $2700- Lowe's) kept all of our bills paid and haven't had any adverse credit action or desperation borrowing!

    My takeaways in 2019: Momentum is all well and good, but BUFFER FIRST. We threw a TON of money at our credit cards when we had income early in the year, but we did not try to buffer ourselves and we had the minimum $1K emergency fund KNOWING that our EF should be $10K. Period. So, when things went wrong, we really didn't have wiggle room. That $1K wasn't enough to pay any one of our large expenses. We haven't been able to get back to any sort of buffer given the last few months, but we are working as hard as possible to reorganize our lives in a way that allows us to save money on true expenses. We're downsizing our home by 1000 square feet in January,  which will help with our commute, transportation costs, and utilities!

    Don't quit guys! Even when things seem TERRIBLE, if you know what you have and it has a job, you're doing 50% better than you were before. Sometimes, even if you don't have $, but you know your true expenses, you can use THESE tools to remind yourself to curb unnecessary spending now so that when money comes, you'll have enough to add to it to pay things, it's helpful. Maybe some of you guys haven't had A. Year. But, having had 2 in the last 5 years, I've realized that gratitude helps. So, I want to say thanks to all of you, especially the mods and others who are active and cheerleading on these posts. Debt is a cancer. It strips you of time, takes years off of your life due to stress, and eliminates your options when you need them most. This challenge is one I have encouraged countless people to participate in because the accountability on these posts has really helped me to do better. I've lurked in prior years, but I'm EXCITED for 2020's Challenge! We WILL WIN against the debt beast! 

    Happy Holidays All!

    Like 12
      • HappyDance
      • YNABing consistently since 2014
      • HappyDance
      • 4 wk ago
      • 4
      • Reported - view

      Slate Blue Vacuum 

      Giving you a [STANDING OVATION] and loudly applauding your year-end summary.  Very well done and very well said.  Moving words.  Go you!

      Like 4
      • Slate Blue Vacuum
      • Trying to ignore the Joneses
      • Slate_Blue_Vacuum.5
      • 4 wk ago
      • 3
      • Reported - view

      HappyDance Thanks. There were a number of mods who kept me going mentally and physically at some points. Thanks  to one person specifically but the entire community is amazing. WairereRose

      Like 3
    • Slate Blue Vacuum thank you. *misty eyes* I appreciate that.

      Like 2
      • Slate Blue Vacuum
      • Trying to ignore the Joneses
      • Slate_Blue_Vacuum.5
      • 4 wk ago
      • 1
      • Reported - view

      WairereRose No, thank you. Really. 

      Like 1
    • Slate Blue Vacuum Congrats! You have an amazing attitude. You've got this! :)

      Like 1
    • Slate Blue Vacuum yup, so much this!!!

      Like 1
  • My December check in.  I paid off $17158.56 of principle this year since I started in May, in addition to getting off of the credit card float.   I  I still have $11,619.44 left to pay off.  I just joined here last month.  See you next year for another year of getting closer to freedom, although I'm going to go slower next year on purpose, because this pace is getting to me.

    Like 8
    • PhysicsGal I hear you on the pace. It takes a lot out of you. Great work this year!

      Like 1
  • End of Year check in - Wow! It's been a ride. I paid off $13, 912 in credit card debt and $1, 200 on my auto loan. It's been a tiring but fruitful year. I expect it to be the same for the first half of 2020, as I plan to pay off  my debt in that time. 

    My entire debt balance is approximately $9,000. Can't wait to smash it next year with you guys.

    Happy Holidays!
     

    Like 6
    • Tishy Wishy Well done! You must be almost able to taste debt-free...

      Like 1
    • WairereRose - I sure can lol!

      Like 2
    • Tishy Wishy Amazing!

      You are almost there

      Like 1
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