As I indicated in the about me section, I admit I have made some mistakes and the past and I am working to correct those mistakes. I will share a few of the mistakes that led up to my debt situation.
- I put myself through college working 2 jobs and with the help of loans and scholarships. My best friend in college had very wealthy parents and was able to spend alot of money. My family had no money so I spent any extra money I had to try and keep up with him and opened multiple credit cards to make up the rest. Let me say I do not blame anyone besides myself for that. My friend never forced me to do anything I could not afford to do.
- Making minimum monthly payments on the above mentioned credit cards.
- Maxing out the above mentioned credit cards. If my limit was $2k, I spent $2k.
- I liked new cars. I bought my first new car just out of high school. Me being very naive, I paid whatever the sticker said w/o any negotiation. I had sucker written all over my forehead. Pretty much every 2 years after that, I continued to purchase new cars. I did learn to negotiate the price but I rolled me negative equity from the first car into each subsequent car "deal."
- I purchased a home in 2003 for about $122k. The home was worth $127k. The seller paid closing costs and I had a pretty good interest rate. I was looking to refinance about 1 year later and found something called a no equity 2nd mortgage. I knew this was the answer and rolled about $40k debt into my home loan. I now had a mortgage of $162500 on my home that was worth about $130k.
- I ran up an additional $29k in debt on my zero balance credit cards.
About 1 yr ago, I decided enough is enough. If I wanted to be able to retire early, I would need to get out from under my blanket of debt. I created a budget to know where my money was going and started paying off debt. To date, I have paid off about $10k. I created this blog not only to get inspiration to get rid of the debt monster, but to share my situation and maybe inspire someone else to start paying off debt.