How to Get Out of Debt

Episode 13

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Show Notes

We Google a lot of things for the entertainment value, like “do a barrel roll” (go ahead—try it!). We also ask questions when we want to learn more: “What’s the absolute best way to make pizza?” And sometimes we search in desperation for things like: “How to get out of debt?”

When it comes to pizza recipes, Google hasn’t failed me yet. But when it comes to debt, there seems to be a lot of misinformation out there.

So today, my goal is to fix that! By the end of this episode, you’ll walk away feeling better prepared to pay off debt and more hopeful about becoming debt-free. This will be better than any old search on the internet.

Let’s not waste another minute, okay?

 

What Is Debt?

Maybe this sounds like an easy question with an obvious answer. But from my talks with people all across America, I’ve found that plenty of college students and grown adults don’t understand the actual definition of debt.

Before we can talk about getting out of debt, we have to make sure we’re on the same page when we talk about being in debt.

Because here’s the truth: 78% of Americans live paycheck to paycheck.(1)You guys, that number was much lower not too long ago. It just keeps going up! Why? Because of debt. Debt has become such a normal way of life that we don’t even stop to think before we take on more of it.

If you want to break the paycheck-to-paycheck cycle, you have to get out of debt. And if you’re going to get out of debt, you have to know what debt is. So here goes:

Debt is owing anything to anyone for any reason.

It’s that simple.

 

Let Me Break It Down for You

I had a college student approach me at an event once. He had a huge smile on his face as he said, “Rachel, I’m debt-free!” So great, right? I mean, a college student with no debt is like a unicorn.

So I asked him, “How are you paying for school? Do your parents cover the cost of your tuition? Do you work part time? Did you get scholarships?” I couldn’t wait to hear his story.

But he just looked at me like I was crazy. He said, “No, I have about $36,000 in student loans. But I’m debt-free!”

You guys. I hear this stuff all the time:

  • “We’re debt-free. Our car loan is just really high.”
  • “We’re debt-free. We pay the credit card off almost every month.”
  • “We’re debt-free. We only borrow money from family.”

Debt is debt, right? And what is debt?

Let’s take another look: Debt is owing anything to anyone for any reason. If someone else pays for something on your behalf and requires you to pay it back—and it’s not a gift—guess what? That’s called debt.

I know, I know. I’m a total Debbie Downer right now. But you’ve got to hang with me, because it’s only when we get honest about our debt that we have any chance of getting rid of it.

 

How to Get Out of Debt Quickly—and Why You Should Want To

My friend says debt is a thief. He’s so right. First, debt steals your money. Then it steals your peace of mind maybe even your sleep.

That’s because debt totally limits your freedom. The Bible says it this way: “The borrower is slave to the lender” (Proverbs 22:7 NIV). Being in debt really can make you feel like a slave. You don’t get to choose how you’ll spend your hard-earned income. Instead, you send it straight to your lender.

And all the while, you’re racking up interest as debt takes an emotional, spiritual and financial toll. Maybe you’re feeling the pain right now as you read these words.

Here’s what I want you to do: Get mad. No, really. Take a minute to think about what debt is doing to your life. Consider how it makes you feel, what it does to your money , and how it might affect your children. And let yourself get mad.

When you get angry, change can occur. When you can say, I’m going to do whatever it takes to get rid of debt once and for all, then you actually will. You may wander into debt, but you can’t wander out. You have to fight against debt with intention and determination.

You bring the “I’m it” attitude, and we’ll give you the know-how to tackle debt.

 

A Step-by-Step Guide for Getting Out of Debt

At Ramsey Solutions, we teach something called the debt snowball.

This proven approach is all about building momentum and motivation as you go along. With the debt snowball, people pay off consumer debt—that means everything but the house—in about 18 to 24 months on average, regardless of income level or total debt amount.

Here’s how the debt snowball method works:

  1. List your debts in order of smallest to largest, regardless of interest rate.
  2. Pay minimum payments on all debts except the smallest debt.
  3. Put every dollar you can find toward the smallest debt. You might quit going out to eat, stop buying clothes, cancel your cable, or take on a second job.
  4. Continue with this plan until you pay off the first debt. Do a happy dance!
  5. Now, make minimum payments on all debts except the second smallest debt.
  6. Put every dollar you can find, including the money you were sending to the smallest debt, toward the second debt.
  7. Continue with this plan until you pay off the second debt, the third, the fourth, and so on! Repeat until you’re debt-free!

Are you catching the rhythm here? When you pay off that first debt, you get a little glimmer of progress and even hope. And then your multiply as you pay off another debt and another and another!

 

How to Protect Your Income When Paying Off Debt

Getting out of debt not only makes today better, but it also takes care of your family’s financial future in a powerful way. Another way to make sure your family is taken care of is by getting term life insurance.

I know this isn’t a fun topic, but it’s a necessary one! You want to make sure that if something happens to you or your spouse, your hard work isn’t undone. Whether you’re getting out of debt, building an emergency fund, saving for a house, or accomplishing other big money goals, your family needs term life insurance.

For the best coverage, consider an amount between 10 to 20 times your income and a term of between 15 to 20 years.

Winston and I trust Zander Insurance to take care of our family. They’ll shop for the best rates to meet your specific needs. Get started with a quote today!

 

The “Debt I Hate Most” Poll

Just talking about debt has me all fired up. And I’m wondering: What debt do you hate the most right now? Which one are you so ready to see gone from your life for good? Comment below!

 

How My Parents Changed My Life Forever

When it comes to healthy money habits, budgeting is the one that’s hardest for me. I’m a free spirit, and I love to spend! But I don’t love debt. The decision to live debt-free was an easy one.

My parents filed for bankruptcy the year I was born. They had taken on a lot of debt, and the experience caused them both deep pain. Mom and Dad decided, right then and there, to never go into debt again. Debt became a four-letter word in our home.

And so, my childhood was a living example of what I teach. When I was young, we didn’t go out to eat. We didn’t go shopping or on vacation. They sacrificed so much in order to avoid debt. And I’m eternally grateful for the life they made for our family.

Of course, I didn’t learn this lesson from just my mom and dad. As my dad’s message of hope began to spread, I traveled with him to events across the country. I saw the pain so many others endured as a result of debt. And I became passionate, just like my dad, to offer hope for families wanting out.

 

The Power of a Debt-Free Scream

People call, drive and fly in from all over America to share their stories on my dad’s radio show. Our team loves to go out and meet the families: the single mom with a teenage son and a paid-in-full credit card statement or the 56-year-old couple with a paid-off mortgage. We love to cheer with them as they celebrate such a huge accomplishment.

But I’ve got to say, meeting families is my favorite. I love seeing the lobby door swing open as a five-year-old boy sprints inside after being in the car for eight hours. The mom follows him with a toddler on her hip, and the dad totes a brand-new baby in a carrier.

They’re tired, but they made it. This family may look like an ordinary family, but we all know what they did is extraordinary. They’ll put headphones on and join The Dave Ramsey Show to talk about how they took on extra jobs for the last two years. And I think, How much did they sacrifice to become debt-free? How many soccer games did he miss? How many nights did she put the kids to bed by herself? But they did it—all for the good of their family!

As their story comes to a close, and they get ready to celebrate, the mom and dad bend down to their young children. The moment they practiced for hours in the car is finally here. And in unison, with little chipmunk voices, the kids and their parents scream, “We’re debt-free!”

And I cry every time. I cry because I think, I was that little girl. My parents could have chosen a life of stress and debt. But they chose a different path, and because of that, my life is forever changed!

Parents, can I encourage you? If you’re working to get out of debt, it’s not just for you. You’ll leave a legacy for your family that spans generations! We usually say you’re changing your family tree. What could be more motivating than that?

 

How One Couple Got Out of Debt—Mortgage and All!

I love that right on the heels of talking about debt-free screams, I got to sit down with Kari and Joey, a young couple who have two daughters and a mortgage-free home! They did their own debt-free scream on the The Dave Ramsey Show before coming to chat with me.

We talked about what inspired them to become completely debt-free, including paying off their mortgage (which is the only debt I won’t yell at you about), and how they actually accomplished their goal.

Here are a few of the best takeaways you can apply to your own debt-free journey:

  1. Make friends with automatic draft. Kari and Joey set their payments to automatically withdraw from their bank account each month. They didn’t have to decide between paying off the mortgage or putting the money toward something else. It just happened, and those automatic payments held them accountable!
  2. Think outside the box. These guys survived six years of marriage and two kids with just one car! What could you do without, move around, or sacrifice for now in order to hit your goal that much sooner?
  3. Stop buying so much stuff. Joey’s advice for anyone hoping to get out of debt: Stop buying stuff. We can all buy too much, can’t we? Imagine how much money you could put toward debt if you stopped buying stuff you really don’t need.

Soon Kari and Joey plan to make their first big purchase after paying off debt: a second family car—with CASH! And even though Joey works in sales with its feast-or-famine pay cycles, they feel safe and secure in the knowledge that they owe nothing to no one . They’re debt-free!

 

Want to eat out less, but don’t think you have enough time to make meals at home? 

Home Chef has you covered!

 

 

24 Ways to Get of Debt on a Low Income

To get out of debt you’ve got to spend less, but you also need to bring in more. My grandmother would always say, “The best place to go when you’re broke is to work.”

Maybe you’re a stay-at-home mom or already have a full-time job and your income just isn’t working enough for you. That’s okay! Check out this super-specific list of ideas for making more money. You might just be inspired to start a side hustle of your own!

Before you take on a new job or side hustle, it’s important to ask yourself:

  • What does my schedule allow?
  • What are the needs in my local area?
  • What am I really good at?
  • How far am I willing to go to get out of debt?

 

How to Make Extra Money to Pay Off Debt

  1. Try pet sitting
  2. Offer private sports lessons
  3. Rent your house out as an Airbnb
  4. Offer landscaping services
  5. Start a housecleaning business
  6. Meal prep for friends and family
  7. Tutor
  8. Babysit or offer childcare services

If you like to drive a car:

  1. Drive for Uber or Lyft
  2. Do grocery delivery with a company like Shipt
  3. Be a food deliverer for GrubHub, UberEats, Delivery Dudes
  4. Sign up to deliver for Postmates

If you’d like to work from home:

  1. Use your photography skills and offer stock photography
  2. Try your hand at calligraphy
  3. Bake cakes
  4. Offer monogramming services
  5. Sell your clothes at consignment stores or websites like Poshmark and thredUp
  6. Offer private music lessons
  7. Build PowerPoint presentations
  8. Offer transcribing services
  9. Be a virtual personal assistant

If you’re a neat freak:

  1. Offer home-organizing services
  2. Detail cars

Want to know the best idea of all?

Start a membership to Financial Peace University. Most of you say your friends don’t think debt is a big deal. That’s why it’s critical to surround yourself with other people who are on the same journey to becoming debt-free. The Financial Peace University community will keep you pumped and moving forward.

On average, people who complete Financial Peace University pay off $5,300 and save $2,700 in the first 90 days! Get started today!

 

If These People Can Pay Off Debt, So Can You!

My favorite segment ever is back with a special debt-free edition:

“Feels amazing to officially own my car!” — Koolaberg

“I always feel like I want to scream to the mountains every time my husband and I pay off another student loan. My heart explodes with much joy and happiness with each milestone we hit while working to become DEBT-FREE. We’ve been chipping away with gazelle intensity ever since I graduated from nursing school almost two years ago, and we have a goal of being 100% debt-free by December 31 (eeeeeek)!” — Kenzie

“Paid for IN CASH!” 💵 Wow, that’s a crazy sentence to say! It’s been a few months since Brian and I moved into this beautiful house DEBT-! I still can’t believe that we actually OWN this house, like paid for IN CASH! No payments! Nada! ZIP! It’s been a long journey to get where we are, but we are so excited for this new chapter of our lives! And we couldn’t be more thankful to Jesus for it! 🙌” — Mrs. Leighty

If you’re working hard to pay off debt or save money, be sure to check out our goal trackers to keep you motivated!

And as always, keep taking control of your money and create a life you love!

 

Sponsors pay the producer of this show, The Lampo Group, LLC, advertising fees for mentioning their services or products during programing. Advertising fees are not based upon or otherwise tied to any product sale or business transacted between any consumer or sponsor. The following sponsors have paid for the programing you are viewing: Zander Insurance, Home Chef

Read the full transcript

– One of these things is not like the other. But if you have no idea what I’m talking about, keep watching. All right, I am pumped about this episode because it has to deal with a topic that most of you are dealing with in your life which is debt. Oh, it is so discouraging. I read all these statistics and these studies all around this topic, and it’s like America is drowning in debt and you may feel this way. 78% of Americans now, it used to be 70%, now it’s up to 78% of Americans, are living paycheck to paycheck, and a good reason of that is because of how much debt they have and how much debt they’re paying out every single month. And the other hard thing about debt is that it’s so normal in our world today, so normal, that people forget what debt even is. I was talking to a group of college students years ago and this guy came up to me as I was getting started and he was like, “Hey, are you the money girl?” And I was like, “Yeah I guess so. “I’m here to talk about money.” He’s like, “Oh, cool, cool. “Well I’m debt-free.” And I was like, “You’re debt-free? “You’re a college student who’s debt-free? “You’re like a unicorn. “Like you don’t exist!” And I got so excited and I was like, tell me your story, like how are you getting through school debt-free? Are you working, did you parents pay for it, is it scholarships and grants? And he looked at me like my dog looks at me and he just like turned his head and he was like, “No, I have $36,000 in student loans, “but I’m debt-free.” You guys, I hear that all the time. Oh yeah yeah, we’re debt-free, but you know, our car loan every month is really high. And I’m like, oh, so let’s just get on the same page all together, okay, this is what debt is: debt is owing anything to anyone for any reason. Say it again. Debt is owing anything to anyone for any reason. Now, to make it even less complicated, let’s play a little debt game. What is debt and what is not? Car loans: debt. Pizza: no, no, no, no, not debt, just delicious. Student loans: debt! Yes, student loans, debt. My dog Nala: not debt. But you can lease pets now, have you heard this, yeah, that’s not a good idea, so sad. Don’t lease your pets. Your mortgage: debt. It’s the one type of debt I won’t yell at you for, but it is debt. Credit cards: debt, yes. Even if you pay your credit card off every month, during the month, you are still technically in debt because you owe someone something at the end of the month. So, that is what debt is. Some of you have fainted and you don’t even know what do do right now in life because I may have just busted some bubbles for you. But that is what debt is, you guys. Again, owing anything to anyone for any reason. And when you look through scripture, every time it is mentioned in scripture, debt, it is in a negative fashion. It’s a curse, it’s a burden on your family. It also says that the borrower is slave to the lender. And I think that is such a visceral picture. It’s such an example because that is what debt does. It limits your freedom. The borrower is slave to the lender, meaning you don’t have the freedom to get to decide what to do with your income. When you work and your income comes in and you have debt, you have to pay other people. You owe someone something, and there’s not the freedom to say hey, what do we want to do with this money? Do we want to invest it? Do we want to give it away? Do we want to spend it? What do we want to do? You don’t have say over your money, and that limits your freedom. And my friend Chris Hogan says that debt is a thief. It not only steals your income from you, but it steals your sleep at night. It steals your peace of mind. And so, when we look at this, debt not only has an emotional impact on you, a spiritual impact on you, but also a big financial impact on you, and some of you are feeling this pain right now whether it’s student loan debt, credit cards, car loans or all of the above, you’re feeling this weight, and you’re getting to a point where you’re starting to get mad at your situation. ’cause you’re like, what am I doing, I’m working so hard and I feel like I have nothing to show for it! You’re getting that feeling and when you get that feeling, that’s when change occurs. That’s when you decide I’m gonna do something different. ’cause those of you out there that are like yeah, I kinda sorta want to get out of debt, I mean I think that’d be fun kinda, yeah, I guess so. Yeah, yeah, you’re not getting out, okay, ’cause you can wander your way in, you cannot wander your way out of debt. You have to be so invested in this. You have to say, “I am going to work so hard “to get out of debt.” And that’s what it takes, but you gotta get mad, you guys, you gotta be like, I am sick and tired of this! I’m sick and tired of living like this! So when you get that, that’s when you can start this process of getting out of debt and to be completely debt-free. So to get out of debt, we teach the debt snowball, and that’s where you list out all of your debts, smallest to largest, regardless of the interest rates, pay minimum payments on all your debt, and then attack the smallest one first. And when I say attack, you look at your budget, and you’re like, we’re not going out to eat, we’re not going shopping this month, you take everything out, you cut cable, you do all of these sacrifices in your budget and say we’re gonna put as much money as possible to pay off that smallest debt, and then once that’s paid off, you take all the payments you were paying on that one, and you roll it over to the second smallest debt. And maybe you get an extra job, I mean, maybe you go crazy to get as much money as possible to pay off that second smallest. Then once that’s paid off, you roll it over to the third smallest, then you keep going and going and going, until that last debt is paid off and you are debt-free! Everything but your house is completely paid off, and we’re finding that people are doing this within 18 to 24 months on average. And this is all income levels, this is all debt levels, I mean, people are getting crazy ’cause what ends up happening is as you’re gaining traction and paying off the smallest debt you actually are seeing hope and you’re thinking, I can do this, even if it’s a $200 Macy’s card that you pay off first, you pay it off and it’s like, okay, this is possible, and you start to gain hope because this is one area of money that can become so hopeless, ’cause you feel like you are so deep in debt that there’s no way out. So again, the sacrifices that you make within your lifestyle, getting your income up, and letting your expenses go down, all of those things together, you’re able to get out of debt, and I’m telling you, getting out of debt is something that will take care of you and your family far into the future. And another way to take care of your family is to make sure that you have life insurance. Now I know this is something we don’t like to think about, we don’t really want to talk about, but you guys, this could have a huge impact on your family’s financial story, in a really positive way, or in a really negative way. And most people don’t even know where to start so they just put it off. But let me tell you, no matter where you are financially, you need to make sure you have life insurance. Winston and I use and trust Zander Insurance to take care of our family. So, you’ll need 10 to 12 times your income in a 15 to 20 year term policy. Zander’s great because what they do is they shop the best rates for your specific needs and they will help you throughout the entire process. So make sure to go to zander.com or click the link below to get started on a quote today. So again, taking care of your family, so important, and also getting out of debt, you guys. Now as I’m bringing up debt, you’re probably thinking through, if you haven’t already, oh God, that credit card that I’ve had since college, and you have $10,000 on it and it’s just hanging around, or your student loan and you start to like think about it and you’re like,I’m mad at that, like I hate it, I hate that one so much! So I want you guys to comment below on what debt you hate the most, the one you are so ready to get out of your life because I know there’s one, there’s always one. And it’s so funny, when I look at my story and where debt enters my life was like at the very, very beginning of my story because for me, budgeting was probably the hardest financial principle for me to become a habit ’cause I love to spend, I’m a free spirit, so budgeting was really hard for me. But staying out of debt for me was so easy, and I think because of the deep pain that it caused my family. So the year I was born, my parents filed for bankruptcy. I was born in April, and they filed in September, and because of what my parents went through, my whole first part of my life was completely different because they got to this point and they said, okay, no matter what, we’re not doing this, we’re not going back, no matter what. And because of that, there was a lot of sacrifice on their ends, and especially now that I’m a mom, I look back and I’m like, okay, they had my sister and me I mean two small kids through this process, and I remember we never went shopping, like we always went to consignment sales, we never went on vacation, I mean we, they, mom and dad, really, really made these sacrifices for us, and I look at that and I am eternally grateful because what I grew up with was kind of a financial bubble in a sense, but that debt was a four letter word, and it was just something you always stayed away from. And traveling with my dad, early on in my life, and working at events, and doing all these things in our family business, I saw the pain that debt not only caused my family, but so many people out there, and that’s one of my favorite parts of my job is helping people become free of this and get out of debt, and that’s why here at Ramsey Solutions people come here to do their debt-free screams live on the Dave Ramsey Show, and it’s some of my favorite calls, because people will call in, or again, some of them will drive or fly from all over America to come to Ramsey Solutions and get on the phone and do their debt-free scream, and they get to explain their story and all the sacrifice that they did as a family. And you meet everyone when you come through our lobby, but my favorite people that I get to meet and see are the young families that come in because the doors to our office will open up and a little five-year-old boy will come sprinting in ’cause he’s been in the car for like eight hours, and then a mom will come in behind him holding a toddler on her hip, and then a dad walks in holding a baby carrier with this brand new baby, and it’s the family. And they don’t look heroic, they don’t look like something special, they don’t look like they just walked out of a magazine, they look like the everyday family, but what they have done is extraordinary. And they get on that call and they talk through how the dad took out an extra job and worked overtime for almost two years. And I look at that and I just, I hear it and I see it, and I think about it, and I’m like how many soccer games did he possibly miss? Like what things did he miss to make this sacrifice for the good of his family? And that mom, I think about her and I’m like, she was basically a single mom. I mean, how many nights did she put those kids to bed by herself, which is exhausting, we all know that, bedtime is hard. But I look at this family, I’m like, they did it! And why did they do it? They did it to pay off everything from $30,000 to hundreds of thousands of dollars some people. But it doesn’t matter what the debt was, the amount, it was the sacrifice that they made, and as they get ready to do their debt-free screams, they put on the radio headsets, and they bend down, the parents, and they have their kids right there with them and the kids are getting excited because they have a job to do, and they’ve been practicing for eight hours for this exact moment. But this dad and mom, they get to look at their kid and say, “Okay, are you ready?” And they get to count it down and they say, three, two, one, and in unison with these little chipmunk voices in the background, this whole family screams out, “We’re debt-free!” And every time I see these families or I hear those calls, I mean, it makes me cry, because I think I was that little girl. Like that little girl that that mom is holding right now, that was me, and my life would be so different if my parents decided to go back and that their legacy was one of stress and debt and that’s how life is. But they chose a different path, and because of that, my life is forever changed. We like to say around here that you change your family tree that this part of life that is so stressful doesn’t have to be stressful, and you can actually gain control of your money. And those of you out there doing it that are paying off debt, keep up the good work. And those of you that haven’t started, start now! And I want to encourage you again to see this family who have paid off debt, they came to Ramsey Solutions, and I want you to see their story, ’cause they are amazing. Thank you guys so much for being here, and your story is just amazing, so catch me up a little bit. Just kind of walk through why are you here in Nashville, and yeah, what brings you here?

– Well, we are here for our debt-free scream and we made a vacation out of it since we’re here.

– [Rachel] Nice, nice.

– But yeah, we have worked for four years to pay off our house, and we paid off $192,362.

– You guys!

– Four years.

– Yeah.

– That’s insane. Okay, so how long have you guys been married?

– Six years this week.

– Six years this week.

– [Both] Yeah.

– The anniversary, okay, and you have two girls.

– Mm-hmm.

– Yeah.

– I met them already, so sweet. And they’re the exact same age as my girls, which is just so fun. Okay, so it’s crazy that you’re like 29, right?

– Yep.

– 30, and you have a paid for house. So like what even makes you get in the mindset to do this? ‘Cause a lot of people that are in debt, think it’s hopeless, right, they think like, oh yeah, you’re just always gonna live with debt. It is what is is. And especially a mortgage, like that is the one type of debt I don’t yell at you for, so. But the fact that you paid it off this young, like what made you even want to do that, like why not take that money and go on vacation?

– You know, I’m in sales, and so my job’s pretty volatile when it comes to if I miss my number, I may lose my job, so if I don’t have any expenses at all, it just makes going to work easier and I don’t feel desperate in my conversations when I need that commission check. And then, you know, our relationship gets a lot stronger ’cause we don’t have anything to pay for except for the lights and food.

– It’s amazing. So who was like, who like kicked this off, like who had the idea, let’s pay off our house?

– I think it was her.

– Was it? It was a common goal, it really was.

– Yeah.

– We were both on the same page. Right when we got married, before we even had a house, we went to Financial Peace University.

– Yes, yes.

– Just at our local neighborhood, some guy put it on, so we did that.

– Yeah.

– And I think that maybe made us want to say, you know, when we do get a house, let’s just pay it off as fast as we can. So I think it was a common goal, and it was right in the beginning of our marriage, so a lot of our marriage was just built upon that.

– Yes, okay, so I’m curious, tactically how did you go about this? ’cause a lot of people are gonna hear, okay, you paid for your house, so like, did you write just big checks randomly throughout the year? Did you have like a tracker and you were like, you know, progress payments? How tactically did you do this?

– Yeah, so we would sit down, how much can we do each month compared to our annual salaries, and we first started with a certain amount and then about six months through it we’re like, we could probably double that. And so we doubled it. But it’s, now it’s on automatic draft.

– Yeah.

– And it’s coming out, and then two years went through, and we’re like,we could probably double that again. So we just like–

– Oh my gosh. Because your income’s going up during this time.

– [Joey] Yeah, income’s going up, yeah.

– So you’re having more cashflow, and you’re like, let’s just throw it, let’s not live on it. Was it hard to make that decision?

– You know, I wouldn’t say it was hard ’cause it was really motivating, especially to see the amount of interest we were paying each month, that just going down and down and down, it’s like, oh at first, you know, you’re paying several hundred dollars, maybe even a thousand dollars, and then.

– Even just the 15 to the 30 year difference.

– [Kari] Yeah.

– Oh the 15 year mortgage versus 30 year.

– It was like, okay, if we pay, if we’d get a commission check, say a $10,000 commission check, we already predetermined it was going to the principle.

– Wow.

– And be like, wow, look how much it took down the amount of interest that you’re paying every month.

– Yes.

– So it was really motivating, but yes, we still have bene on vacation, we just did it really frugally.

– So what was the, what was like the number one sacrificial move you had to make, where you’re like, okay, we–

– We have one car.

– Our car.

– You have one car?

– To this day.

– We’ve had one car our whole marriage.

– So how does that work?

– Well, it’s always worked out where, you know, when we were both working full-time, it was close to each other, so we’d just commute.

– Okay, yep.

– He would drop me off, I did longer shifts than him, so he would drop me off and then pick me up. When we had kids, he would take the tracks.

– Yeah, our public transit, every job I’ve ever had has been literally right to the front door from our house so–

– So is the car gonna be a purchase you’ll make? Will you all do two cars now that the house is paid off?

– We need a family car, ’cause we have a little car.

– Yes, yes.

– We need a big family car.

– Yes, oh, you guys. Okay, so, how does it feel? Like when you write that last check for your mortgage? Which you’re like in the .001% of the world, right, America that pays off their house. Like how does that feel when that last check is, or it was, you know, taken out, right, auto draft, like what do you think, like how does that feel? What’s that conversation like?

– First, I didn’t even know how to do it, so I had to research, how do you pay your house off? There’s not a lot of like research–

– Yeah you don’t just pay it, you have to like pay a fee to close your mortgage out, like.

– Yeah.

– We didn’t know any of that.

– But when we finally had the, I think you have to do it through a wire, when the wire came out, and we opened our phones, and it was like, paid in full. We were like.

– Yeah we kept like opening the app.

– Like is this real?

– Paid in full, okay. The next day, paid in full, still paid in full.

– Yes, yes.

– A little surreal, but–

– And what, it’s been since May?

– Yeah.

– So.

– So good, ’cause it’s the opposite feeling you have when you are deep in debt, right, and a lot of people that are that feeling of living paycheck to paycheck, and if they lose their job, their whole world turns upside down, like they don’t have a plan, and so for those people that are in that position, like what would you tell them, words of encouragement, to say like, that you can do it, it is possible. What would you tell another couple, another 30 year old couple who’s sitting here and they may have credit card debt and car payments and a mortgage, they can’t even imagine. What would you tell them?

– Well, I think obviously Dave’s plan works, the hard part is actually doing it. And then just don’t buy stuff. Like stop buying stuff.

– Stop buying stuff.

– We buy too much stuff. It’s like we buy a box that we live in and then we fill the box with stuff and then when you buy another box, it’s like, why did we buy all this stuff? So.

– That’s it, like you said, I mean you’re just determined, you stick to it, and you have a plan, and you can execute it if you do it.

– [Kari] You know, it’s worth it. And it might seem like so long from now. Like even thinking about four years from now, that seems like such a long time, but it just flies by, and the motivation keeps you going. It’s not just a, oh, four years from now, I’ll be, then we’ll be fine. It’s no, like next month you’re gonna feel a little bit better. And the following month, you’re gonna feel even better. Like it’s just gonna keep snowballing and motivating you and making you feel more peace as you go. It’s not an end, it’s a journey.

– [Rachel] Well said, well congratulations. Your story is just amazing.

– [Man] Count it down, let’s hear a debt-free scream!

– [Together] Three, two, one, we’re debt-free!

– [Man] Yeah! Oh, that’s how it works.

– Planning and cooking meals for the family can be stressful. Knowing what I’m going to cook, having all the ingredients, and making something everyone will love is a balancing act. That’s why I use Home Chef. They deliver straight to your door and get this, the ingredients are pre-portioned so you never end up wasting food and throwing money away. Plus they offer 18 fresh choices to choose from every week. You’ll find easy to make, well-balanced meals that the whole family will love. And it makes me feel like a true chef at home. Home Chef, meals anyone can cook and everyone will love. Visit homechef.com/rachel today or use the promo code Rachel at checkout and get $30 off your first order. Guys, let’s be real. Being a parent is hard work. Now that I have two daughters of my own, it feels like the to-do list never ends, and as every parent knows, your priorities change and you have to make important decisions for your child’s future. That’s why term life insurance is a must for every parent. It’s so easy to get, and it’s affordable. What you’re looking for is 10 to 12 times your annual income to make sure everyone in your family is taken care of. Winston and I use Zander Insurance. They do all of the work for you to find the best prices and options. So go to zander.com to get started on a quote today because that’s who we trust to take care of our family. So one way to pay off debt is not only just to sacrifice your lifestyle, but to actually bring in more money. Make more money! My great-grandmother would always say, the best place to go when you’re broke, is to work. So, I know maybe you’re saying, well, I have a full-time job, I can’t work extra. Or, I stay at home with my kids. But I bet if you get creative you can find a side hustle that is right for you. So some important things to think about. Number one, ask yourself honestly what your schedule allows. Also what are the needs in your area? What are you really good at? And then lastly, how far are you willing to go to get out of debt? So, I though through some of those things, and so here are 24 insanely specific ways to make more money to pay off debt. Number one, pet sitting. Number two, private sports lessons. Number three, rent your house out for Airbnb. Number four, landscaping. Number five, housecleaning. Number six, meal prep. Number seven, babysitting or childcare. The next four ideas are for those of you who have a car. Number eight, drive Uber or Lyft. Number nine, grocery delivery, like Shipt. Number 10, be a food deliverer. Not just like a pizza deliverer, you can do anything like Grubhub, Uber Eats, Delivery Dudes. Number 11, sign up to deliver for Postmates. Now these are things that you can do at home. Number 12, for all you photographers out there, shoot some stock photography and upload them to a stock photo app. You can get paid for that. Number 13, calligraphy. Number 14, cake baking. Number 15, monogramming. Number 16, consignment. Number 17, give music lessons. Number 18, be a tutor, like teaching English online. Number 19, building slides or PowerPoints. Number 20, transcribing. Number 21, be a virtual personal assistant. Now the next couple are if you are a neat freak. Number 22, home organizing. 23, car detailing. And number 24, for all of you, start a membership to Financial Peace University. Two out of every three of you say that your friends don’t think that debt is a big deal. That’s why it is so critical to surround yourself with people who are on the same journey as you to keep you motivated. So make sure to click the link below for more information. And for those of you that are motivated, and debt-free, this is a special edition of She Works Hard Saving Money. FinanciallyFreeInOurThirties said, when the numbers aren’t going down fast enough, I think it’s important to reflect on what you’ve achieved over a three or six month period instead of just the last pay period. If we hadn’t had to purchase a second car or bought those flights, that could have been another $18,000 towards the mortgage. But you also need to live a bit amongst the journey. Koolaberg said feels amazing to officially own my car. That’s right girl, no more car payments. Kenzie said I always feel like I want to scream to the mountains every time my husband and I pay off another student loan. My heart explodes with so much joy and happiness with each milestone we hit while working to become debt-free. We’ve been chipping away with gazelle intensity ever since I graduated from nursing school almost two years ago and have a goal of being 100% debt-free by December 31st. Amazing Kenzie, so great. Miss Leighty said paid for in cash. Wow, that is a crazy sentence to say. It has been a few months now since Brian and I moved into this beautiful house debt-free. I still can’t believe we actually own this home, like paid for in cash, no payments, nada, zip! It has been a long journey to get where we are, but are so excited for this new chapter in our lives. We couldn’t be more thankful to Jesus for it. Oh, so great you guys. I mean, so exciting and so encouraging. Now if you are working hard to pay off debt or save money, then be sure to check out our free goal trackers that will keep you motivated on your journey. Just click the link below. Well, thank you guys so much for watching, and all of you on a debt-free journey, good luck, keep up the hard work, and make sure to email me at askrachel@rachelcruze.com ’cause maybe we can feature you here on this show. So again you guys, continue to work hard and remember to take control of your money and create a life you love.