Good Reads: How Four Millennial Sisters Joined Forces To Demolish $182K Debt Within Two Years

Photo From Pixabay
Photo From Pixabay

 

Forbes.com recently shared an article about how 4 sisters worked together and paid off $182,000 worth of debt in 2 years.

When I saw the title I had to give it a read.

While I know not all of us could live and share a bank account with our siblings, the general tools they used to do it is something you can adapt into your finances as an individual.

Housing

Most people’s largest expense is their rent. Consider what you are paying for in your apartment. Are you paying extra for amenities or space that you don’t need? I’m not suggesting leaving your nice, gated and safe community for a dangerous and cheap shoebox, but really look at all the factors. Could you go back to living with a roommate? Would you be happy living with your parent(s) and just contributing to their bills? (Don’t feel bad if the answer is no. I love my Mom and I wouldn’t want to live back home, partly because of location. If you have Lorelai Gilmore for a mom I’m sure it wouldn’t be that bad.) Could you give up the view that’s adding an extra $100 a month to your rent? I’m currently in the process of looking for an apartment  and I am constantly weighing the difference between necessity and luxury.

Allowance

The sisters also gave themselves an allowance of $75.00 spending money every two weeks… that’s $37.50 a week or $5.36 a day (spending money, not the money used for bills, groceries, gas, etc. ).Can you imagine living on that? This is the money you would spend on that random lunch meeting at Panera Bread or that run into Starbucks, that impromptu session of hookah…. Fun things that individually don’t seem bad but add up over the month.

I’m in no way saying that I plan to live my life on $5.36 a day until my car, loans and credit cards are paid off, but try giving yourself an allowance. For example, if you get paid every 2 weeks give yourself $75.00 to spend a week ($10.71 a day), after you get used to that try to reduce that allowance to $50 a week.  Be strict with yourself. I personally like using my debit card because I earn rewards and cashback, but if you don’t try using the envelope method. Only carry the amount of cash you are allowed to spend and don’t use debit card or credit cards for everyday non-essential products.

Hit one thing at a time

They paid credit cards first. I think one of the main reasons people get so frustrated with saving and trying to pay down debt is that they feel like they aren’t getting anywhere. Try tackling one item at a time. For instance if you have 2 credit cards, pay down the one with the highest interest rate first. I also pay more than the minimum on my cards, but perhaps try to do 150% of the minimum on one card, and then pay a larger amount on the card you choose to pay off first.

For example, if you have $300 available to pay on your 2 credit cards this month, and the card with the lower interest rate has a minimum of 30.00 while the card with the highest interest rate has a minimum of $35.00, pay $45 ($30.00 X 1.5) or the first card and the remaining $255 on the second card. That way you are accruing less interest and paying one card off faster.

 

Check out the full article to discover the other ways the sisters saved.

EDITED BY M.L. Scarbrough

 

17 comments

  1. Leslie

    This is a great read. I’m constantly trying to save and trying to pay off everything. I was hit with quiet a few hefty expenses this year. Thanks for sharing!

  2. Lindsey

    Great post. I currently live with my grandparents but plan on moving out soon because it is way too much to handle. I love your Lorelai Gilmore reference. I am actually re-watching Gilmore Girls from the beginning! That $5 a day thing would be so hard, but I do need to cut down my daily spending. As for the credit cards and loans, I am doing just that. I am tackling the debt with the highest interest rates first. That means my student loans will be last and they are also the biggest. However, I have been paying extra on them each month and the extra goes towards the highest rate as well. Loving your blog! SO glad I found it through the Grow Your Blog group. Sounds like we are a lot alike! 🙂

  3. Cori

    Hubby and I have $20 allowance each for whatever we want (neither of us can question what that money was used for, within reason of course), but most of the time our House budget covers even hobby stuff. So I get that.

    Tackling one debt at a time is a good idea. It’s the way Dave Ramsey’s Debt Snowball is set up. You focus all extra funds on one debt, while making minimum payments on the others. It works! We did it and now we’re buying a house and will be paying off that mortgage ASAP.

  4. candy

    Get rid of the credit cards first and go from there.

  5. Liz Mays

    Clearly they were serious about getting out of debt, and if you really are, those hard sacrifices need to be made. I would totally go with a small allowance to do it. I did actually! It took four years but I got out of a huge debt without having to file bankruptcy or going into collections in any way.

  6. Dia

    Aren’t they amazing. It helps if you have your support system locally.

  7. Dia

    I have a few friends who never got credit cards but are just trying to make a living and pay student debt, it’s rough.

  8. Dia

    That’s awesome! Congrats!

  9. Emily

    Love these tips not just for debt but for saving!! 😀

  10. Sophia

    that is such an inspirational story. Paying off that much in a short amount of time.

  11. Bree Hogan

    Great read. I have a weekly allowance that I have set myself and it really seems to work to keep myself in check. Not saying there isn’t the odd splurge, but I’m generally pretty good.

  12. Dia

    You deserve the occasional splurge is worth it!

  13. Dia

    It seems like it took a lot of determination.

  14. Dia

    Thanks Em 🙂

  15. Courtney

    That is such an incredible feat that those sisters conquered! I have never really considered breaking things down and tackling one at a time, it makes so much sense.

    La Belle Sirene

  16. Dia

    They ar pretty awesome

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