Friday, May 27, 2016

An Overdue Update

I am still alive.

I know, it has been several months since I posted. My handful of active readers are likely still in shock.

Apologies for the unannounced intermission. Mrs. Disindebted and I have been extremely busy with life lately and I just have not made time for this. I plan to get back into this blog full swing, but for now I would like to give you a quick update of what has gone on since we last spoke.

We continued to stick with our plan and demolish our debt by doing these five things. 

  1. In the past year we paid off nearly $40,000 worth of debt - mostly high-interest credit card debt! This is a huge victory and represents more than a 10% reduction of our original debt number, $364,589. On top of that, we are completely credit-card debt free! It's a great feeling! All our remaining debts are now financed at rates under 6% APR and we are making a snowball payment every month (and sometimes more often).
  2. We ditched one of our two auto leases and bought a used car named "Bertha." Bertha is a big and beautiful 2001 Buick LeSabre Ltd. She's actually quite a catch for such an old gal. Bertha was babied for most her life and had only 112,000 miles. I picked her up for a song at $2700. She needed a little maintenance, but she is running great. Better yet, we were paying $265 a month for the leased car. Bertha also helped reduce our insurance premiums by almost $20 a month. We are spending a little more on fuel, but all things considered, Bertha helped us realize $275 a month in free cash flow.
  3. We refinanced our student loans with Earnest. Okay - not all our loans were candidates. Some of our loans are as low as 2 to 3%. That said, some of our higher interest loans were excellent choices! I was able to refinance around $80K of student debt at 5.72% - a full 2.5% lower than the debt was at previously. This will save us a bundle over the years. On top of that, Earnest does a referral program and will give you (AND THE PERSON YOU REFER) $200 if someone signs up using your link. I have already signed up two friends for a total of $400. If you are interested in refinancing your student loans, click here and both you and I will get a $200 referral if you refinance with Earnest.
  4. We rented a house. Our apartment lease was up this month and we were tired of living there. We really wanted to buy and we went back and forth over the merits of renting vs buying, but we got a really great deal on a house. In fact, it is costing us less than our apartment and we have more space - plus a fenced yard for our Debt Free Dog! The move just happened a week ago, so I do not have exact figures. That said, our monthly rent price alone dropped by over $100. I will get into the renting vs. buying arguments in more depth in another post.
  5. We maintained our sanity by continuing to pursue our passions. We did some travel. We went on lots of hikes. We did things regularly with our friends and family. We stayed rooted in our faith. All of these things help to keep us centered and focused on our goal of disindebitification.







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