Last year we posted every penny that we owe in an effort to be 100% transparent about our debt repayment. I wanted to wait until all of the numbers were in from our 2014 transactions before giving you an update on our debt repayment plan (the debt avalanche).
Below you will find the opening balances of all of our credit accounts at the beginning of 2014 and what they were at the beginning of 2015.
Here Is A List Of All Our Debt:
Sallie Mae 1 (4.125%) – $30,099.89 —> $28,414.24
Sallie Mae 2 (4.25%) – $15,193.11 —> $14,927.70
Sallie Mae 3 (5.25%) – $2339.79 —> $1,867.70
University Loan (5.0%) – $1,458.94 —> $968.53
Total Student Loans – $49,091.73 —> $46,178.17
So we managed to take off nearly $3,000 from our student loans. Because the interest rates on them are so low, they aren’t a priority in our debt repayment plan. The $3,000 reduction has come exclusively from paying the minimum on each of these loans.
We were able to get the interest rates so low because we took advantage of every offer they gave when we first started paying them back – making on-time payments for a certain number of months in a row, and also allowing them to deduct from our bank account each month.
The first Sallie Mae loan belongs to me, and the rest belong to my wife. For the full story behind these numbers, be sure to read about how we got into student loan debt:
Initially, we owed almost $65,000 on these loans, so I’m glad to see them go down.
Credit Card 1 (14.24%) – $2,063.56 —> $0
Credit Card 2 (10.74%) – $2,004.66 —> $0
Credit Card 3 (6.24%) – $2,922.19 —> $2,593.79
Credit Card 4 (14.99%) – $955.74 —> $0
Credit Card 5 (15.24%) – $829.04 —> $952.95
Credit Card 6 (9.24%) – $5,058.10 —> $4,368.04
Credit Card 7 (9.24%) – $5,261.17 —> $4,639.66
Credit Card 8 (18.24%) – $126.22 —> $274.46
Credit Card 9 (0%) – $562.69 —> $244.12
Credit Card 10 (20.24%) – $9,433.54 —> $8,318.15
Credit Card 11 (11.24%) – $6,617.21 —> $6,682.08
Credit Card 12 (0%) – $975 —> $0
Total Credit Card Debt – $36,809.12 —> $28,070.95
We were able to pay off nearly $8,800 in credit card debt in 2014. Since our total debt is more than my annual gross salary (and close to double my net), we are quite pleased by this amount!
As you can see, we were able to completely pay off 4 accounts – really 5, but we had to use card #9 for an emergency that my brother-in-law had near the end of the year (it will be paid off by the time you read this). We actually did a hybrid of the debt avalanche and the debt snowball, since we started the year with so many accounts and the bookkeeping for them became a real time killer.
Cards 5, 8, and 11 were used to carry various expenses on them and then plan was to pay them back as soon as the expense happened – although, I didn’t always keep track of that. This year, we are only using 1 card to make purchases and we will be sure to pay those amounts off at the end of each month.
Some of these are really old accounts that we had separately before we got married, and some of them came from one night where we applied for a number of cards that all had 0% balance transfer offers (long story). We wrote about how we got into credit card debt, so you can read all the details if you’d like. 🙂
Personal Loan 1 – $4,500; $3,100
Personal Loan 2 – $2,600; $2,600
Total Personal Loans – $7,100; $5,700
This is a huge category for us. We want to pay these family members back and even though we aren’t paying interest, these are a high priority. We actually “paid” the $1,400 by taking on an expense that they weren’t able to handle at the time.
Early on in our marriage we had to borrow money from two family members in order to handle emergencies that came up (which is why we are trying to build an emergency fund now). They never even bring it up to us, but we want to honor all of our debts, so these stay on the list!
We have already paid some of the first one listed, and we plan to pay these off sooner rather than later.
Our Total Debt
Grand Total – $93,000.85 —–> $79,949.12
Old Total – $105,000 😯
Even though we didn’t pay off $20,000 in debt, we did manage to move from the 90s to the 70s! Owing $13,050 less than we did a year ago is a wonderful feeling. We are going to try even harder this year to pay off more of our debt, especially the high interest loans.
Since we began a sincere effort to become debt free a few years ago, we have paid off $25,000. Just imagine what we could have done with that money if we were debt free! 😕
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