Monthly Archives: August 2013

Week 21- Debt stats update

Happy Sunday guys!

Here are my debt stats for the week:

Spending summary

Monday: $4.20 coffee, $45 groceries, $50 groceries,

Tuesday: $8.90 coffee, $11.70 groceries + haircare,

Wednesday: $4.90 coffee, $4.95 breakfast, $97.00 flowers for a gift, $23.90 gym fees, $29.00 loan insurance, $80 travel, $140 board

Thursday: $8.00 postage + packaging,

 Friday: $5.00 coffee, $12.95 postage, $20 groceries, $25 bottle of wine, $22.00 drinks

Saturday: $7.00 coffees, $30.00 dinner and drinks

Sunday :$20 groceries, $6.00 groceries, $7.00 coffees

Total $662.50

Debt summary

Credit card #1 – $0.00

Credit card #2 – $1344.88

Personal loan: $6893.69

Total debt remaining: $8,238.57

Total starting debt: $14,744.12

Debt reduced by week 21: $6,505.55

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Contracts suck

So I realized that over the last 2 years I have slowly freed myself from the grip of contracts. Even before starting my debt smashing mission this year, I made it my aim to see out current contracts I was in and not resign, or ‘upgrade’.

Contracts essentially are debt. You are committed to a monthly, weekly or fortnightly payment. People will harass you if you don’t make the payments. It’s the ‘I want  it now. Like ,RIGHT now dammit!’ *stamps foot* mentality that gets you sucked in.

I was in a phone contract, laptop contract and white good / furniture contract. All of those are now done and dusted. I have the shitty old laptop I’ve had for years (and spent 2 years in a contract for) and a *gasp*an Iphone 3. 

How RETRO is that!

I was in a contract for the phone for 2 years too. It was all shiny and new and ooohhh check out my iPhone 3 peoples!!! at the start.

And then very quickly the word iPhone was followed by escalating numbers (what are we at, like iPhone 5000 now??) and my phone did indeed become relegated to the crusty ‘has been’ part of phone stocking stores and they stopped making covers for them. I actually found the cover thing the most frustrating.

I remember going into a store and asking for the iPhone 3 covers. The guy looked at me with what I suspect was a mix of sympathy (perhaps she can’t afford a better phone) and amusement (um, doesn’t she know iphone 3’s are sooooooooo 2010) and shook his head.

Fortunately, I am not in the slightest bit gadgety or cool. So I have no use for newer / better / shiner versions every time they come out. Which is good, because, in case you haven’t noticed, newer / shiner and better things come out every freaking week.

So, my laptop my be slow and cumbersome – but hey, its working. I’m writing this post aren’t I? And my phone might be totes uncool, but oh well. I’m not paying some provider $90+ a month.

These days I pay my internet – $25 a month (can cancel with 30 days notice) and no contract pre-paid phone recharge vouchers – $30 a month gets me by just fine!

When these things do eventually come to the end of their lives I will purchase replacements IN CASH.

Aside from my credit card and personal loan, my biggest ‘must pay’ commitment is my furniture storage cost per month, which is $183.00. I have arranged for this to come out of store and be delivered to my folks place in  the next month. The delivery is a huge $1870 because I now live interstate. But Im using money I received from my tax return to pay this cost, and get this monkey off my back.

Slowly, slowly I am getting out of financial commitments. Patience is a virtue in this game! And it’s also the way to stay out of those contracts in the first place – be old school and save for what you need.

 

 

 

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Week 20 – Debt stats update

Hey peeps

Here are my stats for Week 20. Drew cash and charged purchased to my credit card (which I was expecting to have to do) so therefore larger debt than last week. I did spend a lot this week , and it also wasn’t pay week.

Next week I really want to have a seriously low spend week. The travel to and from work from where I am living at my folks place is seriously doing my head in. Last week I was really shitty and tired and over it. The quicker I can pay this debt off, the sooner I can move closer to the city and regain 4 hours of my life everyday!

Also, I’ve joined a gym in the last few weeks – I went for a budget type gym (no classes) for $22.00 a fortnight, which isn’t bad. I’m going 3 times a week so that is roughly $3.60 per visit.  I was very careful to select a gym with an option of no contracts. I can cancel my direct debit with only 48 hours notice, which is great.

Spending summary

Monday: coffee – $3.90, groceries for lunch during the week – $63.00

Tuesday :  $4.90 magazine, $7.50 magazine, $10.00 medication

Wednesday : $6.10 breakfast, $15.00 homewares, $50.00 present for Dad’s birthday, $20.00 drinks

Thursday: $10.00 travel, $3.90 coffee, $70 registration fee for ultra marathon, $80 added to travel card

Friday:  $4.90 coffee, $11.40 lunch, $10.00 bottle of wine, $20.00 medications

Saturday : $8.90 coffee, $2.50 stationery purchase, $20 dinner /wine, $40 added to travel card  travel

Sunday : $6.50 lunch, $4.50 coffee

Total $468.500 + $40 cash I drew from credit card not spent

Debt summary

Credit card #1 – $0.00

Credit card #2 – $1940.00

Personal loan: $6977.83

Total debt: $8917.83

Total starting debt: $14,744.12

Debt reduced by week 20: $5,826.29

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Week 19 – Debt stats

Hey peeps,

Debt stats as of yesterday below. Figures look good for this week BUT it was pay week and it will go up again next update as I will need to draw on my card. At the moment it is a bit of a 2 steps forward 1 step back game, but that’s ok. I was hoping to knock my 2nd credit card out by end of August but realistically it will be September. Slowly inching closer to debt freedom 😉

Credit card #1: 0.00

Credit card#2: $1427.00

Personal loan: $6977.00

Total debt: $8404.00

Total starting debt: $14,744.12

Debt reduced by week 19: $6,340.12

Week 18 – Run your own Debt Race

I am running my own debt race. The last few months I have realised that the pace that I set can change from time to time, but as long as I am moving forward, I will cross the finish line. It may be later than I planned, but I will finish regardless.

In an earlier post, I compared paying off significant debt to running a marathon. I actually ran my first marathon at the start of June, and let me tell you, now I know what it feels like to run a marathon, the analogy could not be more true!

Where have I been these last few months? Ive been here, plugging away at debt, but Ive relaxed my grip on the expectations I placed on myself to meet my targets every week, and every month. If I didn’t relax, I would have given up all together.

I came out at the start of this debt breakup totally focused on clearing this debt in 8 months. I stood at the starting line of the marathon, believing I could finish by 4 hours and 40 mins. I had this time set in my head, just like I had an 8 month deadline to be debt free.

And they both started so well. But like many marathon rookies – EVEN THOUGH I KNEW THIS – I ran to fast at the start. I was excited to be there, all that training, and I just wanted to run.

When I paid my first debt repayment in February, I was champing at the bit to get this thing rolling, budgeting my way to what appears now, to be a fairly unrealistic timeframe.

And don’t we always start with a bang on any new endeavour. But where does the hard work come in? Not at the start when it’s all new and fresh and ‘Yeh baby, I can DO this!!” *high fives self*

The hard part comes in when you are in the thick of it, on the longest stretch, where it just seems there is no fcking end in sight. During the marathon, that was the 26km – 35km stretch. I’d lost sight of the 4 hour 30 min pacer – he smashed past me about 22kms. I knew then, that I wasn’t going to finish in the time I wanted. Although I felt no different physically, mentally, that realisation almost shut me down. I wanted to give up. I just told myself to let it go – run your own race.  I slowed down at that point, if I didn’t, I would have burnt out at the pace I was running and wouldn’t have been able to finish. Mid race, I adjusted my mental expectations, set a new pace and kept going.

Run your own race.

I am at that same stage with debt. I’m deep into the second card repayments – and it’s once step forward, 2 steps back. I wasn’t where I had planned to be at this stage and it was doing my head in.I wanted to give up and say fck it, everyone is in debt – why bother? Then head to the nearest mall and drop 1k on a new wardrobe 😉

But instead, I have just adjusted my expectations of myself and what I can afford to pay off, and what I do want to spend my money on. I don’t want to miss out on living my life. I don’t want to not buy a coffee everyday – yes peoples, you will hear no more griping about coffee on this blog. Ive come to peace with the fact that coffee is my little burst of morning happiness, and for $3.90 a day – I’m buying that happiness 😉

I finished the marathon in 4 hours 56mins. Longer than I expected. But I FINISHED.

I will break up with all my debt. It will take longer than I thought. But I will FINISH.

Don’t give up. Change your pace if you need to. And keep moving forward.

So peeps, here is my debt summary at 18 weeks:

Credit card #1: 0.00

Credit cards #2: $2140.00

Personal loan: $6977.00

Total debt: $9117.00

Total starting debt: $14,744.12

Debt reduced by week 18: $5627.12

Ps – I cracked the under $10,000 mark and didn’t even realise until I did the sums just now!

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