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Thoughts on Increasing Debt

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Hi all! Sorry for the long hiatus! I’ve missed this site and am glad to announce that I’ll be staying and continuing to blog here under our new blog ownership! Hope you haven’t gotten sick of me yet! 😉

It’s been awhile! I plan to do a little “coffee chat” update post soon. But I wanted to jump right back in to talk about some of the things I noticed while we’ve been moving in the wrong direction with our debt. The summer months were rough on our budget and our finances. It was the first time in my 3+ years of blogging here that we’ve gone in the WRONG direction with our debt. Yep, it’s increased.

I’ll be posting some numbers soon. A whole “starting over” series to come. But in the meantime, I wanted to share some thoughts I’ve had these past couple months as our debt has started to slip the wrong direction.

  1. I’ve never seen so many credit card offers in my life. It’s smart, I guess. But it appears that all the credit agencies in the world were tipped off (or following credit reports) and have pounced the second that they realized we’ve accumulated a little bit of debt (meaning, we’re now paying interest to credit card entities instead of paying cards off in full at the end of the month). Seeing the opportunity to make some cash, every company and their mother has been sending me mailers with credit card offers. Kind of creepy, really. And sneaky, too.
  2. “Don’t forget about us” cards. My rarely used/unusued credit cards started showing up in the mail, too. They were sent along with different credit offers, cash advance checks, etc. The new cards were sent even though the old ones haven’t expired. It feels a little predatory, in my opinion.

Source

These credit-lending places sure JUMP at the chance to capitalize on our increasing debt load! They’ve got a business to run and all, but it sure feels a little grimy. Leaves a bit of a dirty taste in my mouth.

Meanwhile, we haven’t had a penny of credit card debt in over 3 years (since we paid off the Bank of America card back in June 2014). Here we are, now September 2017. We have a significantly higher household income than we did back in 2014; back when I swore we would absolutely never ever go back into credit card debt again.

How did this happen? How did we get here?

It’s all a little overwhelming. It’s also frustrating and disappointing. But here we are.

I’m not a quitter. I don’t plan to give up. Instead, I think this little detour just goest to show that not everyone’s debt-eradication path is in a straight line. We’re fighting the good fight and it’s full of curves, ups and downs, unexpected issues, etc. We’re normal.

I hope you’ll stick around and continue to cheer me on as I dig deep and re-commit to finally – once and for all – getting out of debt for good!!!

 

PS: Stay safe out there for all affected by the horrific storms/earthquakes/etc impacting our world right now!

Ashley

Texan at heart; Arizonan on paper. Lover of running, cheese, camping, and family (fur-family included!). Blogger, motivated to get out of debt YESTERDAY! Follow along with my journey!

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23 Comments

  • Reply Carrie |

    I am so glad you are back! You were missed!
    Looking forward to following along with your journey!

  • Reply Alex |

    Yes!! Another reader here who is happy to see you’re still with us. 🙂 I know this summer has been challenging financially, but I think everyone here knows you’re tough and dedicated enough to stick with it. I’m looking forward to chugging along with you. I managed to get myself back into debt this year too (via divorce unfortunately), so I’m right there with you. Here we go!

    • Reply Ashley |

      I’m sorry to hear about the debt and relationship ick! Let’s get back on the right track together!!!

  • Reply Kiki |

    So glad you did not go away! I wasn’t sure with the new blog ownership. I am rooting for you to kill that debt, Ashley!

  • Reply Susan |

    So glad to hear from you – you have been missed!
    Your path to debt freedom is not linear, but you will get there. Hang in there!

  • Reply Sandra |

    Ashley, it’s good to see you back! ‘Just want to say I think you and your husband are doing an AMAZING job with all the curves life has thrown your way! ‘Hope the next year will go more quietly for you as you see that debt steadily decrease!

  • Reply Emily N. |

    So glad you’re still here! I’m a bit skeptical of the new blog owner situation, but I’ll keep checking in. Interested to hear about what’s been going on with your finances this summer.

  • Reply Holly |

    YAY!!! I have been checking daily for you. I have been following along beside you for years now as we are trying to get out fo debt too!! Praying this happens next dec 2018… Again so glad you are staying and I will check back for updates

    • Reply Ashley |

      We need to re-do our timeline and see where we fall. Our last projection put us paying off the debt in early 2019….but now I fear it will be later than that. Darn! Either way, good luck on your journey and thanks for checking in on me!! 🙂

  • Reply Walnut |

    We’re still here to cheer you on and call you out if needed. Hopefully you’ve had some time to step back and figure out how to right the ship.

  • Reply Kili |

    Glad you’re back.
    And glad you won’t let these setbacks deter you from finishing what you’ve worked so hard for.

  • Reply Chantal |

    Back when we were paying off large credit card debts before retirement, we kept receiving new card offers and higher limits. I used to think “Oh they see us as honest, good payers” and feel complimented. No, of course they didn’t . They saw us as suckers happy to accrue even more debt and pay them even more interest.

    Now , when we have only 2 major credit cards and pay balances each month we have received no new offers in I don’t know how long.

    So strengthen your backbone and don’t let anyone see you as a fool!

    Good luck and best wishes.

  • Reply Katie |

    I’m glad to see an update. Although in many ways, your story differs from me: I don’t have student loans, and pay at least the statement balance on all cards (I don’t pay interest), I do have a hefty mortgage since buying our house last summer and sometimes there seems to be more month than money so I do relate to you very much and am looking forward to continuing to follow your journey. Are you still using YNAB?

    • Reply Ashley |

      I’ve been using YNAB, but had fallen into a pattern of using it more for tracking after-the-fact rather than really budgeting. I want to revamp things and may do a comparison of the newest version of YNAB with Dave Ramsey’s budgeting program. I haven’t tried his software yet, but I believe it’s free so I might check it out. I’ll almost certainly write some posts(s) about it. 🙂

  • Reply Reece |

    So happy you’re still blogging–can’t wait to read your update post. Will you give a Dad/family update too? Would like to hear how that’s all going since the move to care and the deck debacle! How did your week down there go?

  • Reply Jean |

    You’re still here – yay! Like others have said, don’t beat yourself up – you’ve had a lot of life changes, particularly when it comes to income. You just need to take a step back, reevaluate and adjust, and keep moving forward. It might not be at the same pace, but forward progress is forward progress, no matter how slow it is!

    You can opt out of getting unsolicited credit card offers. I think the website is actually called opt-out.org, or something similar. You can Google it or go to Clark Howard’s website for confirmation. I still get the checks from my credit card companies – which go directly in the shredder – but signing up for the opt-out program has dramatically decreased my junk mail!

    Looking forward to continuing on your journey with you!

So, what do you think ?