While paying off our consumer debt and cabin, using a debt tracker was so helpful to me. I loved the visual reminder to pay off the debt. It was very motivating!
That being said, I decided that I wanted to start using a savings tracker, and so I designed a couple of trackers to share with all of you. I hope that you use these free resources to crush some goals!
Using these trackers are simple. There are 50 dollar signs for you to color or fill in as you please. Divide your debt or savings goal by 50, and write that number in at the top of the sheet. For example, if your goal is to pay off $1,000 worth of debt, color in a dollar sign for every $20 you pay off. Before long, you will have a super fun visual reminder of your progress. Post it on a wall, on the refrigerator, or anywhere you’d like!
At the end of 2019, I wasn’t sure if we would ever have a mortgage again. But here we are, almost one year in. I do not care for it at all.
But we weighed our options and here we are. I still believe we made the right choice in purchasing this home. Mortgages just kind of stink, though.
We spent the last year working on renovations and not worrying about putting extra on the mortgage. The time has come to do something about it.
While we aren’t sure that this is our forever home, we want to at least pay it down as we would a 15 year mortgage until we decide what we would like to do long term. (It currently is on a 30 year term). This small step would make me feel a little bit better about it.
We are also hoping to boost our savings, and if say, four years down the road we feel like we will be here for awhile, then we will throw a big chunk at the mortgage.
But for now, I’m aiming for $500-600 extra each month. That seems doable.
The interest rate sits at 3.375%, and after running numbers I don’t think it would be worth our while to refinance after taking closing costs into account.
So cheers to making a small step in the right direction!
Hey friends, it’s been awhile! Life has been crazy since early 2020, as I’m sure you are well aware. I thought I’d pop in to give you guys a life and financial update since we paid off our cabin in late 2019.
Ah, paying off our cabin was amazing. We felt so free! But after the pandemic hit and a realization that we were not able to be as self sufficient as we had hoped to be there, we purchased another home in May 2020. It was a fixer upper on five acres, and was basically the cheapest thing on the market that fit what we were looking for.
We started to pour money into renovations, and unfortunately we are not finished yet. It is a bummer to have a mortgage, but at least it has a low interest rate. We are are slowing down for the time being with upgrades for now though, because we need to begin saving more again. This is so very important for me.
In the past year we have started (and fully funded) a car fund, which is much needed. I hope our van holds on for a little while longer though. We’ve owned it for nearly ten years and it has nearly 220,000 miles on it. It has been absolutely excellent for our family. I hate spending money on depreciating items, so hopefully it will hold on for at least another year!
We are also still holding onto our cabin as an asset. We love it, and the value has skyrocketed! Our neighbor’s home is under contract for $400,000 (after one day on the market), and we purchased our home for $200,000 nearly two years ago. We are very pleased with this investment.
I’ve also challenged myself to put all profits from my Etsy shop into ETFs for the next few months. I did this last month, and it’s been fun to see the account grow. I am using an Ally Invest account for this purpose, and am sticking with ETFs that track the S & P 500.
Although I am by no means the breadwinner in our family, I love seeing what I can do to help the family’s finances by budgeting, being frugal, contributing to our financial discussion, learning about investments, and investing what I can outside of my husband’s 401k and IRA. I hope that we are changing our family tree and will be able to wildly give to others one day.
Thanks for stopping by today. Hopefully I will share more here soon.
Guys, I can hardly believe it. On December 19, 2019, we paid off our house!
We weren’t planning on being this gazelle. But after our mortgage company started giving us a hard time about making additional payments in November, we knew we just wanted to be done. Also, after having our new baby earlier in the month, I was totally over all of the overtime my husband was working. I wanted him to be home more often, but he was committed to working long hours until our home was paid off.
So we cashed out some investments. We used my husband’s entire bonus. And we nearly drained our emergency fund. After doing this we were able to pay off the mortgage several months sooner than anticipated.
It feels so surreal. We are taking a minute to breathe before deciding our next steps. Building up our savings account again is crucial, so that comes first. After that, I don’t know what goal should come next. We want to start a car fund since both of our vehicles have over 200,000 miles. We also want to save for a house upgrade or land. We were able to pay off our current home relatively quickly since we downsized twice during the last three years. My dream is to one day live in a home similar to the one we left in 2017, but this time without a mountain of debt. I do not want to be house poor ever again!
The peace financial freedom brings is much better than feeling poor while living in a large home. We are not financially free yet, but I know paying off our current home is a huge step in the right direction. We are so grateful and thankful to be done with this mortgage!
June is coming to a close, and so is our monthly mortgage paydown. We closed on our new cabin on May 31st, and this month I’ve solely been focused on paying it down as quickly as possible. Interest at the beginning of loans is killer! Our South Carolina home is on the market and we are praying that it might sell before too long.
We purchased our cabin for $200,000. After putting 5% down, our loan was for $190,000. We are now sitting at $184,980.
Looking at our amortization schedule, we have paid the equivalent of 20 payments! If we had made the first payment only, our balance would have gone down only $240 or so.
I’m going to be on attack mode to skip as much interest as possible. Once our previous home sells, we should be sitting in a nice spot.
This kind of paydown has been made possible with the Lord’s help and lots of saying “no.” We have been on this debt-free journey for around 2.5 years now, and it has been so worth it.
Oh my goodness, y’all. This little blog has been super quiet the past month for two reasons. We are expecting our ninth child and we are moving!
The decision to move was not an easy one, especially since I have been so laser focused about paying off our mortgage. I really wanted to see what we started come to fruition. I wanted to see this house paid off! But when I became pregnant I knew that moving back home really was more important than anything else. I fought my crazy feelings for awhile, but my husband, being so kind and wonderful, did what he could to find a job back in Georgia. Everything has fallen into place very quickly!
We moved to South Carolina to help boost our finances with a higher paying job and a downgrade in house. I am super pleased with our progress.
I’m not 100% sure what our future holds financially, but I’m trusting in God to lead us along. We are closing on a mountain cabin this week which has always been a dream of mine. This is house downgrade number two for us. Once we are in the cabin our house in South Carolina is going on the market.
Our options are as follows…we could either take the equity from our home once it sells and almost pay the cabin off, or, we could put a chunk on the cabin, recast the mortgage and turn it into a rental while putting another chunk down on a slightly bigger more permanent home. We will know once we get in there, i.e. how it feels and if we fit, and believe me there is almost nothing I would like more than a paid off mortgage!
I hope to share updates here on a more regular basis soon. For now, please follow along with me on Instagram. This week is full of packing, purging, and painting. We pick up our Uhaul truck tomorrow!
Oh my goodness, guys. I am beyond excited to say we have officially paid off $154,500 worth of debt since November 2016.
Right now we are chipping away at our mortgage. We are also toying with the idea of increasing our emergency fund. This is hard for me to do though, because every bit of extra income I like to throw at our mortgage!
Did you know that 8 out of 10 Americans live paycheck to paycheck? This used to be us! We thought it was perfectly normal for us to live this way, and by the grace of God we did not fall into some sort of major life calamity without the protection an emergency fund brings.
$70,000 of the $154,500 was paid off when we sold our previous home. It has been really hard at times to keep chipping away at our debt when I want to spend our money on something else. I’m really determined to not spend much on depreciating items right now though. I’ve done that for too much of my life.
So how do you get started paying off a large amount of debt? I recommend putting one foot in front of the other, and taking things one day at a time. Look for motivation by following others who are on the same journey as yourself.
Paying off your debt is so worth it, y’all. Each dollar you pay back increases your net worth. Each dollar you pay back is changing your family tree. You can do it!
We now owe $138,500 on our home! We purchased our house for $255,000, and our starting loan balance was $242,250. After paying our mortgage down $40,000 once our previous residence sold, the remainder of the balance has been paid with a lot of sacrifice.
Seeing this number fall while our net worth grows is an amazing feeling!
Paying additional principal towards your mortgage is so worth it! Our mortgage company provides a chart that explains just how much interest we could save by sending in just an additional $50 to $200 per month.
Take a look at these numbers, ladies! Amazing stuff happens when you add a zero or two to their suggestions. This chart is specific to our mortgage, but I bet yours would look the same, or even better!
We are currently passionate about paying down our mortgage because we know by doing so we are changing our family tree in a big way. Our house is small for our family size. I would love to upgrade one day, and our strategy might eventually change from paying down our mortgage to boosting our savings. But for now, we want to kill as much interest as we can.
Ah, our mortgage payoff week is here! It seriously feels like my birthday every two weeks. Watching our principal number fall is amazing! Lord willing, we will be in the $130,000s by the end of the week. We were in the $240,000s less than two years ago, and being at this point today still doesn’t quite seem real!
We track our mortgage pay down closely by using the amortization schedule we received at closing. We put 5% down on our home which was purchased for $255,000 on August 25, 2017. By December, we had knocked out our PMI after our house in Georgia sold. We then declared war and have been putting whatever we can towards our mortgage.
Being both debt free otherwise and pretty frugal have helped us tremendously. Our finances wouldn’t look like they do now without many sacrifices and cuts to our lifestyle.
So here’s to reaching the $130,000’s. I will post another update later in the week.