It’s challenging to think of life without payment terms. From the time, we’re old enough to drive a car, we’re told all about how to properly manage debt. How you should only use a credit card responsibly, only drive used cars with a loan period of no more than 5 years, make sure you have a down payment on your house before signing a mortgage agreement, and the list goes on.
Very few of us are told anything about just paying in cash for something. We’re instead told that we can’t afford to go to school without taking out student loans and that we can’t afford to drive a reliable vehicle without a car payment.
But the truth is that you can afford to go to school without loans and drive a reliable car without a car payment. You can even live life without credit cards and can pay in cash for a home.
I know, you’re rolling your eyes because you don’t believe me. It’s not easy to accomplish but nothing worthwhile has ever been easy.
The truth is, had I been smart enough (and listened to my mama) I wouldn’t have had to take out student loans to earn my degree. I could have just paid in cash for it. I graduated with my Bachelors at the age of 26, so I was a non-traditional student anyway – working full time and going to school full time. I could have and should have, just saved the money required of me to go to school debt-free.
I could have even started off at a community college to take my general education classes and then transferred once I had saved up enough money. But the problem for me was my impatience. I wanted my degree right then and there. I wasn’t afraid to work for it, but I didn’t want to have to wait around to earn it either.
Truthfully, I thought that once I earned my degree that I would somehow be elevated to some new status and start making a ton of money more than I was already making. But that didn’t exactly happen. And the only new status I gained from earning that degree was the status of having to repay my student loans.
The same with my cars – I’m the poster child for the American belief, “you are what you drive” and have had 7 vehicles in my short 30 years on this earth. Only two of which were paid for in cash. I can remember thinking that my small SUV was only going to feel so much smaller once baby number two came around so of course, the next logical decision was to go finance a mac-daddy Tahoe.
Then the credit cards….most of y’all already know my story of failing with credit cards at 21 years old so I kinda sorta “learned” my lesson and was slightly more responsible with them the second time around. The only problem was that my husband’s credit cards and mine still required a payment every month.
Life without Payments
But here we are now, very close to no longer having any payment of any kind. And in case you’re new here, the only debt my family has is the mortgage. We paid off my student loans last year and just over $55,000 of debt in two years.
Related post: How We Paid off $5,000 of Debt in One Month
It’s an amazingly weird feeling not owing thousands of dollars a month to others. I mean sure, we still have to pay for things like utilities, but the $450 car payment – gone. The $380 student loan payment – gone. The nearly $4,000 credit card balances – gone.
Life is easier when you aren’t worried over how you’re going to afford to pay back the people you’ve borrowed money from. Life is easier when all you have to worry about are paying for groceries and keeping the lights on.
Don’t get me wrong, we aren’t rich and don’t have oodles of money coming in. We still live on a one-income budget and work hard to save our money and pay off our mortgage. But no longer having to worry over car payments, student loan payments, and credit cards has been such a blessing to us.
And honestly, I want that for everyone because you deserve it. You deserve to not wonder where your money went and you deserve financial peace.
If being debt-free is your goal, I encourage you to keep going because the end it totally worth it.
Related Post: 4 Steps to Becoming Debt-Free
If your debt-free, what motivation can you offer up to those that are the journey?
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