The Official 2020 Debt Smackdown
Welcome to the Official* 2020 Debt Smackdown!
Happy new year everyone!
That's right, we're back for 2020. Last year we saw about 310 of us brutally destroy about $3 million in debt. Wow. Right. Massive achievement. Can anyone say 'YNAB blog post'?
But there are plenty of us with still some debt to go. And as much as I hate debt, I do love a good spreadsheet, so here we go. A few of us have come into 2020 with some debt remaining. Maybe over spent at Christmas. Either way, this challenge is open to anyone who wants to eradicate that debt from your life.
So what's this about? If you are holding onto some debt as you enter 2020 - 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 2019, we collectively paid down over $2,800,000 in debt! An increase of OVER $1,300,000 than in 2018!
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.
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 2020 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 2020 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 $2,800,000. Let's smash that number again in 2020!
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 :)
I know I'm late to the game, but we're trying to get started on paying off our mountain of car debt and credit card debt. I've got a car with 6370 remaining, one with 17450 remaining, and one with 40500 remaining(yikes). We also have about 3500 in credit card debt between us. There's student loans as well, but I'll worry about those next year!
October checkin: $521.27 paid off on the large CC, and successfully stayed debt free on the small CC! I did end up having to charge a couple things on the large CC, so my actual balance is $5,227.29--I'll update the spreadsheet. Joined the YNAB Debt Bootcamp for this month, hoping that'll be some good motivation to add some extra money and find opportunities for savings! I'm also doing my first monthly checkin this weekend--reviewing my personal/ financial goals, looking at where I am financially, and what my money needs to do for me. I'm hoping that will help me get clear(er) on my priorities (besides "DEBT GONE") and find some extra cash.
October 1st Check-In:
Still plugging away at my family loan. Sent $260 to it this month. My parents have resisted me increasing the amount so as it stands I owe them a littl over 11K which ends up meaning I would be paying them over the next 3 1/2 years. That is with no interest so, much better than the original credit card loans it all started out as.
My mom hinted a bit ago that they might forgive it as a Christmas gift. I don't think she would have mentioned it if they weren't prepared to do that but we will see. I will continue to budget as if that isn't going to happen (and I certainly always planned to pay them back) but it would be excellent to start off 2021 completely debt free.
September progress report on my battle against the student loan beast:
As of August 12, 2020: $202,811.04
As of September 31, 2020: $200,762.03
Notes: Regular monthly payment resulted in principal reduction of $1,249.01. Made extra principal payment of $800.00. Total reduction of principal in September: $2,049.01.
Year-end goal is to get the balance down $44,934.56 (from $224,934.56 starting place on January 1, 2020) to $180,000.00. With a $24,172.53 reduction so far this year, I'm now about 53.79% there.
Paid minimums on all debts: $1310
Added to Snowball category: $949
With my anticipated Snowball of $7517 and November and December's payments, I will reach my goal of $27,600 for the year.
I adjusted my debt-payoff expectations a little. I decided I'd rather be a budgeted a little further ahead than pay off our debt 3 months sooner. Undebt.it says Jan. '22, but I'm going to try for Dec. '21. But not Oct. '21.
October and all but $999 of November is budgeted! And there are two more Paydays in October.
Another good month. Keeping on track with the plan. The taxes were due so we have increased the balance on the one LOC but were able to take advantage of two months of reduced interest expenses for about $140.
CC#1 - Consolidated to CC#2 Original $19,937.78/Current Balance $0 (Paid $18,826/Transfer $1,111.78)
CC#2 - Original Balance $13,861.85/Consolidated Balance $21,069.40/ Current Balance $15,326.35
CC#3 - Consolidated into CC#3 Original Balance $7500.71/Current Balance $0 (Transfer $7500.71)
CC#4 - Original Balance $34,944.68/Current Balance $34,944.68
September update. I paid off one of my private student loans!! And it was with a lender I really didn’t like, so bonus win there, since I won’t have to deal with that bank anymore. I officially have less than 20K of debt. 🎉🎉🎉
I also picked up a third job this month, delivering pizzas. My husband isn’t thrilled but I’m actually enjoying it. 🤣
2020 Starting Debt: $30,766.04
September Debt Paid: $2,812.49
Current Debt: $18,143.49
Debt Smackdown: $12,622.43 / $15,000 (84.15%)
HELOC Maxed Payments: $495.08
NEW!! Tutoring Side-hustle: $375 (actually made an additional $225 which takes a few days to clear off the debt so will show up on the Oct amount)
Debt Smackdown Totals: $1215.08/$13,936. = 53.32%. I will now reach my goal this year. :))
Feels AMAZING to have started a side-hustle that is going 100% towards debt!! I've played with my spreadsheet to see the forecasted payments each month and my debt will be gone in Jan2022, 8 months before the 3 month renewal date. I could actually pay it off sooner but my HELOC only has $7500 pre-payments per year (haha only!!) An extra $900 is a huge difference to my goals and this is an underestimate. Don't count chickens before they hatch... The Moms love me and one told me that I'm not allowed to go anywhere...that her girls are going to need me for years! She was excited to hear that I could come a few times a week in the summer since my time after-school is limited. There are 4 of them in their "covid bubble", which I'm now a part of, and of course since 1 & 2 got me to tutor, they all want me. Feels great to be wanted, be able to work with great kids who I can really see the difference I am making in their lives, and also the cha-ching benefits for my debt-free journey!
I'm now in the mindset to aggressively attack my debt since joining this forum. Thank you everybody for the community of support. I really feel it and I don't get it IRL. :)
Only $344 this month to credit card debt, but we did have $1150 go towards the baby due next month - including an unexpected $450 for a genetic test done months ago we went back and forth with insurance on. The doctor had assured me it would be covered, but insurance refused to budge on it. At least I got the company to drop from the original charge of $1100 for it. But, from my end, I'm going to think positive on this in that we had money available to pay for this bill without hurting any other category. Plus, we've managed to completely pay for bills along the way with this baby. We're expecting minimal charges from the hospital next month (barring complications) which we definitely cannot say with our first child.
September Monthly Check In
- Construction Loan: Balance $0!
- Medical Loan: Balance $0!
- #2 Medical Loan: Paid $300 - Balance $5,200
Total paid this month $300. $10,670 / $15,870 - 67% complete for the year!
Still fighting unexpected medical bills. I have actually already paid for October as well, but I will wait another week before updating. It would appear that the only way I will make my goal of paying all my debt off before the end of the year is if we get another stimulus. So we'll see. I doubt it. But at least I will be able to clear the remaining debt quickly next year.
Paid down another $1423 this month; I'm now at ~53% of my 2020 payoff goal. Thanks to massive shift in our income this year, there's no way we could make the original goal. HOWEVER, I'm leaving all goals as they are to see how well we do all things considered. We have - for the first time ever - massively shifted our spending so we're now living within our current means, which means WAY below our 'normal' means. So I'm hoping 2021 will allow us to pay the rest off faster than we would have without the 2020 curveball that it has been. Shockingly pleased with progress this year! And we still have all of Q4 to go. Hubs could find a job + I might get some of my salary reduction back, so I'm still hopeful for a better outcome than we're even on track for today. Regardless, I SLEEP BETTER AT NIGHT thanks to YNAB and this challenge. Woot!
Joining this later in the year, but I've been unintentionally (well, intentionally) doing this anyways.
At the beginning of the year, I owed:
Credit Cards: $27,284.26
Student Loans: $31,717.25
2) I'd like to pay off $25K in CC debt and $5K in Student Loan Debt. I was hoping to pay off all of the CC this year, but a move in the summer set me back about two months.
3) As of today, my balances are:
Credit Card: $11,688.21
Student Loans: $29,204.94
4) I'll post on the spreadsheet today!
🍏🍎 September Check-In 🍎🍏
I paid off one credit card, then immediately took advantage of a balance transfer offer to roll two smaller balances onto that newly zero balance card. It kind of overshadowed the huge victory of getting that one to zero but I started the year carrying balances on 5 credit cards and am down to 2!
Debt pay down progress in 2020:
September: $1959.69 (it was really a but more, but I did some balance transferring and the fee brought my September total payment amount down a little)
Total progress: $17,245.22 paid off
Student loans: $20,121. 18 (in covid forbearance, so I'm redirecting the payments to cc's)
Credit Cards (2!): $30,399.37
Haven’t done an update for a while. We put the extra payments on hold when the world crashed but luckily we have both continued working and getting paid. We we’re moving the MBNA balance to another low interest offer which took FOREVER to get arranged. And then just when I decided we would/could throw it all at the debt, son #1 needs to sell his truck. To help him make it easier by getting the loan paid off and no lien on the title, I piled up ALL our cash plus took out from line of credit and made a $53,000🤮 loan payoff to his loan. Once he sells the truck that will be paid back to me but I may need to cover the shortfall and let him pay me back over time. So all the stockpiled money may end up not being used to payoff my debt for now. I haven’t updated the spreadsheet or undebt.it because it’s too overwhelming. Debt went down but debt went up. Not even sure where I stand right now.
September Check-in: I am working this Debt SmackDown. $13,000 paid on my Student Loan in September. Almost at $80,000 balance.....In January of 2020, paying off this Student Loan was not even on my radar. I started YNAB for the 3rd time in February 2020 but I stuck with it. Now, 7 months later....look at my results. WOW! Unbelievable.
September Monthly Check In
- Construction Loan: Balance $0!
- Medical Loan: Balance $0!
- #2 Medical Loan: Paid $300 - Balance $4,700
Total paid this month $500. $11,170 / $15,870 - 70% complete for the year!
Unfortunately things will be changing again. The design company I have worked for over the last 8 years is dissolving and my clients and I have been transferred to a new owner. I'm pretty sad about it. I think I will continue getting my tiny monthly maintenance payments (like $125) but I doubt I will receive any new clients. I am also losing a lot of the free subscriptions I have been using all these years such as Photoshop. If I were to purchase all the things on my own it would cost over $100 a month, hereby cancelling any income. But not having the subscriptions will affect my personal clients, and also my own projects. Sigh.
Now I have to decide if I want to try to branch out and go back to freelancing, find a new employer, or if I am going to take a bit of a hiatus because of Covid and my new baby.
October Check-in....kind of boring this month with $100 towards Parent Plus Loan (last debt woo hoo!). 70% towards goal of NO MORE DEBT! The only way I'm making my goal this year is if I decide to use some of my emergency fund to pay that off (balance on loan is $9725). Since interest will resume in January, I very well may pay this off ;)