Each month I will be posting these Monthly Debt Reduction & Savings Statements. It is my intent to use these statements as a comparison against Our Starting Debt Amounts where I listed our debt as of January, 2009 – when my wife & I began our Debt Free Adventure – to summarize our progress toward debt free living.
Here is our up-to-date Debt Reduction & Savings Statement for July, 2009.
Our Current Goals
- Pay off our credit card debt by the end of 2009 (which started as $9,197 in January, 2009)
- Pay off our auto loan by the end of 2009 (which started as $6,036 in January, 2009)
- Pay off our Lending Club loan by the end of 2009 (which consolidated our credit card and auto loan debt – started as $11,000 in August, 2009)
- Pay off the remaining small amount on my wife’s credit card (was sitting at $632 in August, 2009)
- Save $6,000 toward an Emergency Fund by the end of 2009
- Pay an extra $50 in principle payments on both our student loans so as to pay them off early
- Pay double principle payments each month on both our mortgages (we have a 75/25 loan) in an effort to pay them off in only 15 years as opposed to another 28. **Update – 3/31/2009** We are paying double principle on our 2nd mortgage, but not our first. We will not start doing so with our first mortgage until we pay off our high interest debt.
Our Current Debt Progress
In my last report I spoke of an unplanned expense to the tune of $4,500 that has put a serious blow in our progress toward our year end goal amounts. However… I am not deterred. I will continue to faithfully plod forward and have faith that the Lord will provide. I may reach my goals and I may not… either way, blessed be the name of the Lord!
As you may already know, my wife and I recently joined and borrowed from Lending Club purposing to consolidate our high interest debt under a single payment at a lower rate. We were quite successful, and will save at least $500+ because of it.
- Credit Cards – I used part of the loan from Lending Club to eliminate the two credit cards that are in my name. The total amount I put toward those two cards was $2,976.68. Toward the last card in my wife’s name I paid $3,000. Her card still has $632 left that she is going to pay on for the next few months. So bottom line is… we now have $632 in credit card debt.
- Auto Loan – The remaining amount of my Lending Club loan went directly toward zeroing out the remainder of my auto loan. The total payoff amount for that loan was $5,003.74. This loan is gone.
- Mortgage – I continued to pay double principle payments on our 2nd mortgage.
- Lending Club – I borrowed $11,000 through Lending Club and after the loan origination fees actually received $10,917.50. This amount is to be paid off over 3 years and has no prepayment penalty. My first payment is not due until early September. As soon as I am fully recovered from my unexpected $4,500 expense, I plan to pay a minimum of $1,200/month toward this debt, but will increase it according to the increasing amounts I begin earning from DebtFreeAdventure.com
For the the month of July 2009, our high interest consumer debt was reduced by $385.30, from $12,017.54 down to $11,632.24. Again, the amounts were so low because I had to put my normal debt repayment amounts toward the $4,500 expense.
Our Current Savings Progress
Our savings contributions remain consistent thanks mostly to the awesome Capital One 360 automatic savings plan, and have received a small boost thanks to the fact that we have been able to further reduce our expenses allowing us to contribute $50 more to our EF, and $25 more to both our Auto and Vacation Funds. In case you’re wondering… I am a firm believer in contributing to my savings EVERY month no matter what. I am currently following my Balanced 75/25 Method of debt repayment/savings contributions.
- Emergency Fund - I increased the amount I contribute to our EF from $200/month to $250 thanks to more expense costs we have cut. This month our EF was boosted from deposits of $250 and interest $1.51 bringing its balance to $1,290.12.
- Auto Fund & Vacation Fund – both increased by $50.26 putting them both at a total of $225.85.
- Side Hustle Fund – my side hustles earned my $99.98 this month bringing the total of this fund to $330. At this point I am still putting all monies earned from my side hustles into this fund as a way to track the income. I am not putting it toward debt repayment at this time, but may be soon… depending on how much I earn. I only want to use this money to pay off debt if it is earning over and above the costs to maintain side hustle operations.
The total amount saved for July was $452.01 which brings our total cash savings to $2071.84
Lord willing – my wife has just a few more months of paying on her credit card and will have that paid off by the end of the year. I can now focus all efforts on my single Lending Club loan which I still plan to pay off by the end of the year. I am not abandoning my goals to pay off this amount by years end even though I am way behind (thanks to the $6,000+ in emergency expenses we incurred in the last few months.)
I do not know where the extra money will come from, but will continue to strive through faithful, biblical stewardship toward God and hope that he will bless.
If you desire to track our progress, you can do so directly by following the MDRSS (Monthly Debt Reduction & Savings Statement) tag series here.
Betterment is one of my two favorite ways to earn interest on my savings! They have an awesome program for the Average Joe to save and invest simply and effectively. There are no minimum balance requirements and no transaction fees. Read my Betterment Review or open an account to get started earning now.