But not me this time... My blog! Can you believe it? I've been blogging for an entire year! This is the first time I've kept up a blog for this long. Proud moment!
I feel like I need to recount the story of how my blog was born... *sigh*
What inspired me to start my blog was actually opening up a paper loan statement. I paid online, so I never bothered to open these statements. I never bothered to learn I had monthly variable interest. I also never bothered to realize why my balance was continually rising, even though I had been out of school for 2.5 years.
I had been making the scheduled payments on all of my loans for 2 years (and some as long as 4). It was beyond shocking to see that in the last two years I had paid nearly $13,000 in interest and a little over $1,200 in principal. I couldn't believe it and began digging through all of my financial records. Things began to look worse and worse. During those two years of payments my loans peaked at nearly $128,000! How could I have let this happen? Where did I go wrong? After more digging, I learned that the $14,200 in payments had only decreased my total balance $849.54 from its peak. I was devastated
I knew if I didn't take control of the situation immediately I would never see the end of my debt.
I started pushing numbers through spreadsheets, listening to Dave Ramsey, Suze Orman, and anyone else I could glean a nugget of information from. I was downloading debt calculators, creating my own, but no matter how you crunch it $127,161 wasn't going to go away overnight. The most realistic scenario I could come up with was paying approximately half of my current take home salary each month to become debt free in 10 years. Ugh, 10 YEARS!
I had a plan*!
*Ya know, as long as I don't incur any typical major life events like a kid/kids, house, husband, etc...
I know my plan isn't very glamorous, but then again... what part of debt is? There's the extra tidbits like finding ways to save money, finding ways to make more money, but the main part is taking control of the situation. Starting my blog was just a way to have fun with it.
There have been a lot of ups and a lot of downs, but this has been a great year.
In the past 12 months I have:
- Taken complete control of my finances.
- Paid off $8936 of my student loans.
- Sadly, also paid $7165 of interest.
- Paid off all outstanding interest, so a portion of each payment actually goes towards principal.
- Completely paid off Loan #1.
- Saved $10,000!
- and met a great community of like minded bloggers.
While I don't feel like I have an amazing, WOW story yet, I am hugely proud of the fact that I paid off nearly $9,000 of my student loans, and SAVED $10,000. I know I have a really, really long way left to go, but seeing these results has me fiercely motivated to top them over the coming year. This journey is a long one, but I sincerely thank all of my friends, family and blog friends that have supported me so far. I don't know where I'd be without you guys.
Also, an especially big thank you to Sig. O for being my biggest supporter (and biggest fan! lol) Seriously, he has been absolutely wonderful. He even ate my tuna helper... TWICE! :)
Here's to a Happy, Happy Blogoversary.
Thanks for being with me,