Financial Reality

Breaking the Cycle

Financial Reality

Money has always been somewhat of a taboo subject matter in my family. Every time anything was mentioned about finances the topic was quickly changed into something different. I know my family has always struggled financially and growing up I wanted to do anything I could to not follow in the footsteps of being imprisoned by debt. Today, I took a good hard look at my financial situation and reality set in. I have not done a very good job at straying from the harsh realities of being in debt. I could probably blame part of this on ways of the economy and the rising prices, but when it comes down to the nitty gritty all the blame is placed on myself, alone. I am the one that chose to buy a new car and I am the one that decided to go to college.

First, let me explain my situation. I am a 28-year-old woman still living at home because moving into a $2,000 a month studio apartment is not feasible at this time and probably won’t be at anytime in my lifetime. Which leads into why I want to be successful in building wealth. However, in order to do this, I will need to get out of debt. Below I will place my debt so, as you follow along in my journey you can see where I'm at. My hope is that by following me and my journey, you will also be able to feel inspired to join in and help yourself out of debt.

Today, by the time I finished going through my finances I awakened to a harsh reality. I am currently over $40,000 in debt. Majority of that comes from my student loans and auto loan, but at my age it is a lot of debt to have racked up, without anything to show for it. Part of me wonders if I might feel a little better about it if I at least didn't still live with my parents, but I know I would be even more stressed.

Now my plan is to pay off as much debt as I can as soon as possible. My first goal is to completely knock out everything I owe on my credit cards as they are racking up the most on interest. All of my student loans are broken up into groups, so I plan to pay those from smallest to largest, and finally I will be making the minimum payments on my car each month.

In order to do this, I need to plan a budget. Doing this is what really through me into a wake up call. While I was looking at my minimum monthly payments for each of my debts, I realized that combined, these payments themselves make up over half of my income. This will be a long journey, but the first thing I need to do is figure out if I have any expenses that I can cut. I'm already living on a tight budget, so this is difficult. However, I have found that if I quit eating out, I will save about $60 per month, which I can use towards debt repayment.

I am already working two jobs, and 100 percent of my paycheck from my part-time job is going to paying down my student loan debt. However, I am re-evaluating and wondering if I should be putting it towards credit cards instead, to cut down on the interest. My next step is to figure out if there is anything else, I can do to bring in more money, while at the same time, not completely wearing myself down. What ideas can you come up with to put more money towards some of your debt?

Inbox dollars is a very slow way to earn a little bit of extra money in exchange for your time.

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Courtney Frazer

Courtney has been published on Yahoo Voices, Wikinut, The National Monitor, and most recently, Vocal. She has an AA degree in Humanities and Psychology and a BS Degree in Business Finance. 

See all posts by Courtney Frazer