Debt By Numbers
On Friday I cleared my $10,000th dollar of debt principal this year. This brings my total debt paid down since I started paying it on November 30th, 2011, to $11,314.00. This means that I’ve paid down about 30% of my debt in eight and a half months.
Since I’ve reached my $10,000th dollar of the year, I thought this would be a good time to reflect on how much debt I’ve paid, how much farther I’ve got to go, and my estimated debt free date.
How Far I’ve Come
As I mentioned, I’ve paid off about 30% of my existing debt. That might sound like a lot to some of you, but to me, it seems pretty paltry considering the huge efforts I’ve been putting into hacking away at my debt. I feel like I’ve deprived myself of a lot of things, for only 30% of my debt? 50% would be nice, or even better, 60%. Unfortunately, I didn’t accumulate this debt slowly, and I’m not going to get rid of it slowly either. My student loan took four years to accumulate, and here’s the damage I’ve done to it in eight and a half months.
Paying off well over a third of my student loan debt sounds pretty good. Especially when you consider what my student loan debt would be sitting at if I’d chosen to make only the minimum payments: $25,079.28. Now that is ridiculous. If I was making my minimum payments I would only have chipped off $1640.72 in eight months! That’s practically nothing! Instead I’ve eradicated over $9,000. At this rate I should be student loan debt free by August 2014. Here’s hoping I can make it sooner!
My car loan is much more boring because I’ve only been making the minimum payments on it, but with a low principal and an interest rate of 2.9%, the interest that’s accumulating on this baby is minuscule compared to my monster student loan.
Fun Facts About My Debt
- I should have a total debt of under $25,000 by my birthday (want to guess when that is?)
- I’ll have paid off half of my student loan debt by January 2013.
- I’ve exceeded this year’s debt repayment goal by just over a third.
- I make weekly extra payments to my student loan instead of monthly, just to save those few extra cents (and because I love updating my sidebar “The Facts” widget)
- If I calculate long enough, I can come up with a debt milestone to hit for every single month of debt repayment, and believe me, I celebrate every one to keep my motivation up.
- Once I’m done paying off my debt, I’ve have enough spare cash to buy a new iPad every single month.
If life doesn’t throw me for a loop, I’m looking at another 24 months of debt repayment. That’s a long time to go without hair cuts, restaurants, books, and lots of other things that make life worth living. Knowing that’s what’s in front of me can be disheartening at times. Sometimes I want to just say screw it and spend my entire debt payment on cute stuff from urban outfitters. But that would be counter productive.
So in order to stay motivated, I try to focus on the good things that are going to be happening in that two years:
- I’m going to get to have my first Christmas with my fiancée in a house together complete with our own Christmas tree and stockings.
- I’m going to get married (with cash)
- Go on an epic honeymoon (already booked and paid with cash)
- Run a half marathon
These are all great life achievements to look forward to, and I can’t wait to experience them. In the mean time, I’m going to keep dutifully making my debt payments every week and try to forget about the slow tick of the interest clock, except when I’m celebrating a debt milestone, which I will do with much fanfare and copious amounts of alcohol.
What’s your most interesting fun debt fact? I want to know!