My debt-free journey and how it began
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My debt-free journey came one day after weeks of threatening to do a budget. Weeks before my short-term work contract came to an end. And fortunately, before we found out that one of our outgoings was to double.
I finally sat down and worked it all out; everything from mortgage and rent, bills and groceries, to drinks out and household purchases. And those big expenses we never think of – like Christmas, holidays and birthdays. Not to mention school trips, days out, clothes, shoes etc (and that’s just the kids!).
The evidence was clear, and scary. We were massively overspending, and at the rate we’d been spending both incomes with now having only one coming in, we were going to be in the shit.
An overspend of £1,000 per month?
You might wonder how that’s even possible, but if you go through your bank statements and total up all the supermarket trips, petrol fills, evenings out (or ‘beers out’ in my husband’s case), bottles of wine from the local shop, and all the “small” Amazon purchases over the weeks, it soon adds up. It wasn’t exactly £1K every month, some months we spent more due to me working a full time, fixed-term contract (celebratory spending at having more disposable income – clothes we’d not bought for years, a meal out here and there). In the last month we spent less, as we had less money coming in. But when I worked out the average, that’s what I discovered, and it was frightening.
£21,000 of DEBT? Let’s get serious.
So, it’s time to get tough. Time to crack down, lock down, and make back some money.
I looked at all the ways we could save, such as the usual switching of utilities and insurances etc, but didn’t look at the obvious (more to come on that in a later post).
I’d also neglected to actually look at the extent of my short term debt, and was shocked to discover the sum total to be just short of £21k. To me, that’s a ridiculous amount. £12,000 total in credit card debt, £7,000 on a car a couple of years previous, and a new sofa suite last year.
Let the debt-free journey begin.
We’re going for total annihilation.
Honestly, it’s freaked me out a little bit. I don’t like this feeling of not being in control; of knowing that unless we get on top of this, we’ll be in debt for the rest of our lives. I want a bigger house. I want nice holidays. I want to buy some clothes and to look and feel great!
With this in mind, I’m going big. This debt is going down. It’s going to be total annihilation.
If one couple can clear £42k in 22 months, I’m sure I can clear mine in 24 months, right? I’d love to do it in a year, but I’m not sure if that’s realistic.
But it’s a goal, and I have a target. My debt-free journey has begun. And when I have my heart set on something, I’m one determined girl.