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Here it is… my big debt confession. These are my real-life debt numbers. Sharing how much debt you have can be a scary thing. People might judge you for it or think you don’t know how to handle your money. I’m here to tell you it’s ok if that happens. You can’t start fixing a problem until you recognize that the problem is there!
Coming to terms with how much debt you have can be one of the hardest parts of getting control of your finances. I started really thinking about how much debt I had in January 2018, when I first learned and got serious about following Dave Ramsey’s Baby Steps. I had finally sat down to write out a real budget and totaling it all up wasn’t fun. This is the step that forces you to take a good hard look at your situation and it definitely isn’t easy.
I moved into my first apartment on my own in Summer 2015. I had always told myself I had a budget since I was paying my bills on time but I honestly had no real goals or direction. Writing out my debt and totaling it all up was one of my first steps towards creating some actual financial goals.
Now that I’ve sort of restarted taking real control of my finances again in 2019, I think it’s time to do a debt confession! These are my real debt numbers as of June 1, 2019.
- Discover card – $12,654.53
- Fedloan #1 – $2,328.79
- Fedloan #2 – $3,560.58
- Mazda CX-5 – $17,241.99
- Mortgage – $189,027.95
Total debt: $224,813.84
Yikes. In the interest of full transparency I have included the house here, but I do own it jointly with my boyfriend. We keep our money separate and only use a joint account for house related payments and our emergency fund. Although we don’t have joint finances, we are working towards the same goals of paying off debt. So while I will likely end up helping to pay off some of my boyfriend’s debt eventually, I’m focusing on my own personal debt right now.
Debt is Dumb
The first debt I’m working on is actually my Discover card. Even though I’m planning on doing the snowball method for paying off my debt, I decided to go ahead and start with my credit card even though it’s not my smallest debt. My card has the highest interest rate of any of my debt. I also need to use this card for work. It has been pretty close to being maxed out for months, which just gives me a lot of stress. Because of that, I’ve decided to pay it off first before actually moving towards doing the debt snowball method. Once Discover is paid off (hopefully by the end of the year!) I’ll move on to paying off each of my student loans and my car.
Even though it can be pretty overwhelming to total up all your debts, it’s the first step in getting a hold on your financial life. You can’t hope to solve the problem if you don’t know what the problem is! I know it is going to be a long road to paying everything off, but I’m motivated and ready to tackle my debt head on!
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