A Young Couples Journey Out Of Debt, And Down A Path To Financial Independence.

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

How do you pay off debt?

I have always been good at paying off debt, the only problem was, that was all I did. I would pay off one debt, or get very close to paying it off, at which point something unexpected would inevitably arise and I would find myself right back in debt only to repeat the same scenario over and over again. I was not saving and paying down debt, and that was the problem. In order to be successful I believe a combination of saving and debt repayment is the best strategy.

A light came on one day while speaking to my father, I had recently started my full-time job and was about to start making more money. He suggested the best thing for us to do was use my salary to cover all of our household expenses. He then said we could use all of C's salary for debt repayment, and for savings.

I was unsure if this would work as my father makes a lot more money than I do, so much more than my mother that her salary as a nurse is fairly insignificant to his. He uses all of her salary for repayment of debts, I am sure they don't even miss it at all. With this in mind I began to crunch the numbers and found it would be tight but possible for us to do the same.

We began this debt repayment plan last June, and to date we have paid down over $11,000 and plan to be debt free by June of this year. If we stay on track we will have paid off nearly $27,000 in just one year. This was a great idea for us. I recommend this strategy to anyone who can afford to do it. I suggest that the person making the most money cover the expenses. If all expenses are covered the other salary is used strictly for debt and for savings. If not, supplement a portion of the expenses and use the remainder for debt. It works, try it.

Let me know what strategies work for you. I am always interested in new ideas.


David said...

My wife and started doing just this this summer. We cover our monthly expenses (rent, living expenses, student loan payments, etc.) with my paycheck. Her paycheck goes directly into savings - first to cover our emergency fund then for other short-term savings goals.

I get a quarterly bonus that we apply directly to our credit card debt (which will be paid off by February). After the credit card debt is gone then my bonuses will go towards paying down the principle on my wife's student loans.

We did this primarily to increase our (formerly non-existent) savings and also because we're hoping that my wife will be on maternity leave this coming year and we can't be dependent on her income.

Joey Gray said...

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