This morning, we submitted our final payment to the credit card company. We are credit card and car loan debt free!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
I am absolutely ecstatic. We have been working toward this day for six years and finally reached our goal. We refuse to ever again pay interest on another credit card or car loan. Never again will we throw our money down the toilet.
We paid off $42,389.02. That is insane! Out of that, $28,064 was credit card debt. Twenty eight thousand dollars!! We could have bought an amazing car for that amount of money or a huge chunk of a house. We could have toured Europe!
What do we have to show for it? Not much. We financed most of our wedding costs on a credit card. Food. Books. CDs. A very rare cash advance to pay another credit card bill. All of it was a waste of money. I have no idea how much money it took to pay off that $28,000. I didn't keep track of how much money we paid in interest, just the initial balances. Knowing how much money we paid in interest over the life of the credit cards would be depressing. I just don't want to know. I've learned my lesson.
We used Dave Ramsey's principles to guide our journey. First we saved up a $1,000 emergency fund to cover any real emergencies. We used it several times and were always grateful it was there. Then we started paying off our smallest balance debt, throwing as much money at it as possible. When that was paid off, we took the minimum payment from the first debt and rolled it into the second debt, plus threw as much money at the debt as possible. Rinse and repeat until we finally paid off the last credit card company.
Now we can finally start saving up for our move! We're leaving Arizona in 93 days. Once we arrive in Seattle, we'll split our money between building up a bigger savings account and buying new furniture. After saving up six month's of living expenses, we'll start paying off our student loans ($41,596.16 left to go).
We are so excited! Our lifestyle does not change much because our credit cards are gone. We will still be living very simply, paying off the rest of the money we borrowed during college. The one thing we do want to change is to institute a date night and some (just a little bit) of fun money. We rarely spend any money other than groceries and bills. It would be nice to buy a new book or some nice quilting fabric once in awhile, of course fully paid in cash.