by Ashley L
Hi! I’m Ashley L., a 28-year-old, single teacher. I was raised in a southern, middle-class household and in an extended family comprised of almost 5 public school teachers. Growing up I, all I wanted to do was to teach. But I knew that I would not make much money and so I tried to plan for a modest lifestyle.
I’m so grateful for the opportunity to become one of the new BAD bloggers and to share that story with you! I’m also pretty nervous because my debt story is from a slightly different point of view. I do not have tons of consumer debt. I was blessed to be able to earn a scholarship that covered the costs of my tuition for undergrad, then earned my M. Ed. from a very inexpensive program, and recently got $5000 forgiven from my student loans. This brings my student loans to a total of $8000. I have about $14000 on a car loan and was able to refinance this note to an interest rate of .99%. I have had some build up on credit cards, but was able to pay them off by cutting my living costs.
Last year, I was living in a small southern city with my boyfriend (who I am so happy to say is the love of my life) and my adorable rescue dog. Then the funding for my position at my school was cut. I was devastated. I felt pretty screwed over and eventually relocated to another city about an hour and a half away from my boyfriend and my “doghter.” This made me get intentional about my financial security and hyper-aggressive about my financial goals. I committed to being a woman and a teacher who is financially astute and successful. I do not want my life to be dictated by money, I want to dictate the flow of money to create my life.
I am currently trying to reach my financial goals of eliminating debt and reaching financial independence by: 1) eliminating my entire housing expense from my budget by house-hacking (frugality!), 2) renting out my primary house as a rental property and doing small side hustles (investments and additional income!), and 3) feeding money into retirement accounts (savings!). I am happy to share my journey with the BAD community and to be able to learn from and enjoy this opportunity.