It was a cold wintery Illinois day on December 31, 2013. The last day of the year, and one of the supposed best days of the year to go car shopping. Dealers want to get rid of their inventories, and the holiday season means plenty of auto manufacturers are offering discounts. So what was I doing on this day? Hunting for a new car.
The decision was a spur-of-the-moment happening, a quick “let’s take a peek at some used cars” for fun, I told my mother. I had plans to drive 3 hours north to celebrate the New Year with some friends, and had no intention of making a purchase that day. Yet after a good three hours at the dealership there I was, signing a loan for a 2011 Hyundai Sonata.
If you’ve read some of my recent posts, you’ll know that I have happily sold that Sonata, so here’s the reason why: I destroyed that $20,000 car.
It was the worst financial decision I’ve made thus far, or, on the other hand the worst mistake you could make when you purchase a like-new car. What did I do? I drove that Sonata (with only 2,000 miles on it at the time of purchase) into the ground, putting over 75,000 miles on it in less than two years. And I’ve been making payments on the car for the past two years, at $338.43 per month, and put $4,000 down at the time of purchase. Continue reading “How I destroyed a $20,000 car”
It’s been less than a month since my last debt update and here I am, with nearly $10,000 trimmed off the total balance since then! The Sonata is now sold and gone, and along with it the entire auto loan balance. It’s a great feeling. And it only makes me want to work harder now to get the rest paid off. All that’s left is a small credit card balance and the rest is a student loan, all from one loan servicer.
I checked my credit report yesterday and was happy to see that my auto loan was updated with a zero balance and marked closed. Nice!
On another positive note, when my last payday rolled around, I took $750 and threw it all at the one student loan that wasn’t with the same loan servicer as the rest of my loans, and paid it off in full. That’s two loan accounts closed on my credit report in one month!
My next goal is to get my credit card down to $0 and never use it again. I can manage to put down at least $500 on it every two weeks, so I’ll have the balance paid off towards the end of January. The light at the tunnel is getting brighter and brighter.
It’s been about five months since my last post, so here’s an update. First of all, I’m no longer preparing for a wedding – my former fiancée and I decided it best to call it off as we both work on ourselves and deal with some personal issues that would prevent us from having a happy, long-lasting marriage. No big deal – it’s water under the bridge, we’re glad we made the decision we did, and all is well. But how does that impact my financial situation? Glad you asked!
Since I’m only accounting for my own financial picture now, the total debt number is a lot smaller. The debt meter originally read about $90,000. Today, it’s at $34,030.34. Here’s the breakdown of that number: Continue reading “Debt Update: $34,030.34”
I’m not a huge fan of Tony Robbins, but I did find his interview on The Tim Ferriss Show back in October very fascinating. One nugget of financial wisdom and psychology insight that I took away from the nearly 2-hour interview was a correlation between monkeys and humans. Continue reading “How Monkeys Teach Us to Grow Our Savings”
You’re strapped with debt, up to your eyeballs in loans and don’t see a way out. What do you do? Pay it off! Duh, right? Recognizing the problem is the easy part. What’s next? You figure out how to get to the finish line. It seems so far away, but you’d do anything to get there quickly. What do you do? Easy. Follow these seven steps: Continue reading “7 Secrets to Getting Out of Debt That You Don’t Want to Hear”
I started this blog way back in the end of 2014. Now, it’s already halfway through 2015 and I feel like I’m still right where I left off. Things keep coming up that keep pushing back my ability to tackle my debt, such as an impending wedding, car repair expenses, travel expenses, and overspending in general.
Normally, spending the amount of money that I do would be no huge deal, if I didn’t have any debt to my name. But I still have debt, approximately $85,000 of it, and I can’t stand it. I spend so much time pondering the state of my financial situation rather than actively doing something about it. Why? Because I feel stuck. Maybe you feel the same way? Continue reading “I’m ready to be debt-free already!”
So, about the time I started Dimes to Dough, I had just signed up for a new credit card, my second credit card ever, an AMEX card. Years of 0% APR on my Citi Card had finally ran out, and I didn’t feel like negotiating for 0% APR again. So, I agreed to a seemingly nice 15 month no interest card from AMEX with a $200 cash back offer after spending $1000. I signed up with the intention of switching over any purchases from the Citi card to the AMEX, and paying off both as fast as possible. Continue reading “No credit card debt… Cool.”