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Posts tagged with: savings

Debt is like the last 10 pounds

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This may come as a surprise but…

I’ve been debt free before.

There was a moment, for about 3 days, in college when I had no debt. My car was paid off, my credit card had no balance, and I didn’t have a mortgage.

Then, I came close again after we closed on our house. We had been saving for a year and the money returned to us from escrow was used to pay off my husband’s credit line.

That credit card debt freedom lasted a few weeks before we decided to remodel our master bathroom and take a trip to Hawaii.

My finances are like a yo-yo diet. Sure I’d love to eat healthy all the time but rolled tacos with Mexican guacamole? I can’t resist.

Just like weight loss, a diet is silly. The only real option for permanent results is a lifestyle change. Staying thin requires eating less than or equal to what you need – staying financially healthy means spending less than you make. Sure it looks easy on paper, but only those who have suffered through it (and continue to suffer through it daily) know how hard the struggle can be.

This is the longest I’ve been on a financial diet – and I know I’ve got what it takes to keep the ‘weight’ off.

Yeah, the change is lame – but the results… those are what I’m grinning at each month when the credit card statement arrives.

One day… it will say…

$0

Which is harder for you: Losing weight? or losing debt?


Normal by the Numbers?

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I’ve been asked to reveal my actual monthly budget numbers. I was reluctant at first and then realized it may be a learning experience and I should see if I am normal in my expectations of my money.

No, I am not going to reveal my housing costs. Asking a San Diegan to reveal her mortgage payment is like asking a New York housewife to reveal her age. The only thing likely to happen is a giant string of lies.

I’m also not going to reveal our charitable giving amounts. What we decide to give is a very personal decision and it’s not an amount I’m willing to change just to pay more on bills.

Savings: $50
Electricity/Gas: $105
Cell Phones: $100
Cable/Internet/Phone: $100
Grocery: $300
Gas: $260
Laundry: $10
Toiletries: $11
Clothing/House Repairs/Animal Care/Spending Money: $200
Water: $70
Trash: $18

All remaining money is used to pay our mortgage, our credit card, our student loans, and my husband’s truck.

So. Am I normal by the numbers? What does your budget look like?


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