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Posts tagged with: financial goals

Danger Will Robinson! Danger!

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We’ve updated this popular post for 2023. We hope you enjoy looking back on it!

Telling myself no is getting to be old hat. Sure, there are definitely things I would love to have, but I’m becoming more comfortable with the thought that I can’t have everything my heart desires.

I’m even pretty good at limiting myself with purchases for the baby. Correction, I’m pretty good at buying NOTHING for the baby. Hmm. Perhaps I need to at least work on getting a bed for the poor little dude.

But I have a fatal flaw…

I want my husband to have absolutely everything and I’m realizing this could be a problem.

We received notice from his school that he is eligible to participate in the graduation ceremony next month. He’ll have two classes to take in the summer, but since they don’t have a winter ceremony, summer graduates walk early.

Ever since we received the notice, we have been receiving a barrage of e-mails, letters, and phone calls from the school and outside vendors to buy everything under the sun for the graduate.

$200 invitations? Yes! We NEED those. They have the OFFICIAL school seal! He DESERVES it.
$500 lifetime membership to the alumni association? Of course he needs that! How else will we get tickets to games?!?
$299 diploma holder? It’s important!
$175 cap and gown package? Yes! How much more for the tassel?
$400 graduation day photos? Sure!

I set all the information in a neat pile and started to review it with my husband over dinner. After listening to about 10 seconds of my spiel, he grabbed the pile.

‘No. No. Definite no. I don’t need it. That’s ugly. And not on your life’ he said as he looked through each one. He tossed the pile into the recycling bin and started to do the dishes. He looked at me and smiled, ‘How was your day?’

‘A lot better before you rained on my spending parade’ I sighed.

My husband is one of the hardest working men I know. He works a full time job, attends school full time, and somehow finds time to make money on the weekends. It’s hard to get past the ‘deserving’ factor and focus on the ‘lack of money’ factor. Thankfully, he doesn’t take advantage of my flaw.

Can you say ‘no’ to yourself but find yourself saying ‘yes’ to everyone else?

Ashley’s Debt Update and Discussion

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My last post stirred the pot a bit! That was not my intention, but I am so grateful to the BAD community for your support and comments alllll throughout my many years of being in debt.

Today, I want to talk about my current debt status and I’d love to crowd-source comments/input about what my plans should look like moving forward. But let’s start with my current debts.

Sept 2023 Debt Update

DebtAmountOriginal BalanceAPRMinimum PaymentSept Payment
Carmax$4521$20,539 (10/2021)3.45%$374$374 (+ Extra $871 planned)
Mohela$26561$96,020 (2014)0%$0$0 ($250 saved)

Carmax

I’ve got a fire under my butt to get this paid off ASAP! October is my target deadline and I’m still fully planning to do that. I’ve made this month’s normal payment and plan to put another $871 toward the car this month. That will bring the amount owed to about $3651 (give or take a few bucks in interest). Next month I already have a car payment planned of $925. That brings the total owed to approximately $2726. And I have $3,000 in a CapitalOne360 savings account that is earmarked for “car repairs.” I plan to raid that fund to pay off the remaining balance in full.

After raiding my “car repair” savings account, I can slowly start to rebuild it a little bit each month. I like to have some money stashed away strictly for repairs so I don’t have to shoulder it out of my normal budget if something big comes up. Knock on wood – I haven’t had any major repairs since I bought this vehicle in October 2021. But with my previous vehicle, I was very grateful to have the repair fund since I had a series of unexpected repairs in the $2,000ish range during the last couple of years I owned the vehicle.

 

Mohela

That brings us to my student loan debt. Here’s where I’ve got to be honest. I have very little motivation to pay this thing off. Like, almost none. I was accepted into the Publish Service Loan Forgiveness program earlier this year. I will be eligible for loan forgiveness in 2026. Three years. I’m leaning toward just riding it out until then, making minimum payments (which resume next month), and calling it a day.

Including all the interest I’ve paid, I’ve more than paid back my original student loan debt. I’ve also written before about how I used to be laser-focused on paying back my student loans and why that has since changed. I know I could pay the loans off before they are forgiven. It took 2 years to pay off $20,000 for my car. I can totally pay $26,000 in 3 years to eliminate my student loans. But why? For what?

My thoughts…

Instead, I’m more inclined to save some money in a high-yield account that I can use to pay the tax burden when my loans are forgiven (forgiven loans are considered taxable income, so if $26,000 is forgiven, I will need to pay what we would owe in taxes on $26,000).

But what do you think? What’s the “right” move? I say “right” in quotations since there is no single right or wrong answer. I used to feel it was my moral, ethical obligation to pay back my student loans in full. At this point…..I just don’t (read here why). In my opinion, I’ve more than paid back my debt. And then some. But what would you do, if you were in my situation?

I’d certainly like to be debt-free sooner than 2026. But I think it would likely take right about 3 years to pay off that amount of money anyway. Why scrimp and save and everything just to pay off the loans by the exact time they’d be forgiven anyway? Wouldn’t that money be better spent in a high-yield savings account? Then I could take the savings and pay our taxes (when the loans are forgiven) and maybe put any remaining balance toward our mortgage? Or heck, take a vacation? Maybe do that debt-free scream in Nashville like I’ve always wanted? 😉

I realize this is likely a taboo topic for a “get out of debt” blog. At this point, I’m okay with that. If I need to step away from blogging because my focus shifts (after paying off my car), then I’m okay with that too. I’d love your honest input here.

I welcome your thoughts, opinions, personal stories, etc.

Thanks, again, for always being so supportive! The BAD community is the best!