It’s the end of the month, and that means it’s time to recap my plan to pay off my student loans by my 30th birthday (33 months to go)! Here’s the numbers from Month 3…
- Starting Balance: $40,948.55 (Jan 1 ,2013)
- End Balance: $40,112.82 (Jan 31,2013)
- Paid Towards Loans: $1,031.01
- Interest Paid: $186.69
- Principle Paid: $844.32 (increased from past months!)
- Dec ’12: $242.46
- Nov ’12: $640.63
Short Term Goals Pay off this loans in this order (deadline)
- 1-08 @ 6.55% (
JanuaryFebruary ’13): $748.21
- 1-07 @ 6.55% (April ’13): $2,453.16
- 1-05 @ 6.55% (Sept ’13): $5,224.54
I had big aspirations to pay off loan 1-08 this month, but fell very short (insert pouty face). I over anticipated my holiday bonus last month, forgetting that taxes take 25% of it (thanks, uncle sam). So we’ll have to push that one off for next month. This shouldn’t affect paying off the next loan in April because that all depends on the big tax return. Last year we had enough from our tax return to pay off lots of debt, put into Avery’s college savings, AND build a deck. So I’ll keep my hopes up on that working out.
Here’s a glimpse into what my massive spreadsheet looks like:
Maybe it’s a bit anal, but part of keeping on track with paying off loans is putting it all in writing. (OK, maybe I am anal cuz I just realized I never changed the title from Dec to Jan… oops!… to prove I’m not anal, I won’t correct it!…at least not on the image… totally fixed it in the spreadsheet!) This helps me keep track of the numbers while motivating myself as I see the numbers go down every month.
What I Learned I’ve been looking into Dave Ramsey’s stuff… and thinking about reworking my goals to do the smallest loans first, no matter their interest. I ordered his book ‘More Than Enough’ and we’ll see if I gel with his ideas.
Rewarding Myself I’ve been playing on www.Saveup.com and last month I won a $10 off coupon to Shoebuy.com…which went to a pair of (much needed) new running shoes. Woot Woot! I got another $10 off this month and I’m hoping to get another one so I can get another pair of shoes specifically for Zumba & Kickboxing class… more of a dance shoe.
- Pay off Loan 1-08 ($748.21) + min to other Sallie Mae loans
- $40/wk. to VSAC Loans
- Read Ramsey’s book
- Have our taxes done – & see what our return will be!
Reflections I’m bummed I didn’t meet this month’s short term goal… but I am sooo excited to see my loan debt drop under 40K! 2-1/2 years of paying off student loans seems like it’ll be exhausting but it’s kind of fun. I looked at my minimum payments for all my loans and if I only pay the minimum (a big no-no) then my last loans would be paid off in 2022. That’s 9 years from now!!!! If we are thinking about financially being ready for baby #2, and don’t want them 10 years apart, that right there is motivation! 2 1/2 years vs. 9 …. big difference! And can you imagine the $$$ saved by not paying all that interest for those years!
Do you have any tips and tricks to share on how you are/did pay off your student loans or debt faster? One helpful tips I’ve received as of late is to pay bi-monthly or bi-weekly, as it cuts down on the interest. I do this with my VSAC Loans, and I’d do it with Sallie Mae too if that was an option – they’re so limiting with how to make payments. Anyone else have that issue?
Did you miss the previous posts on this financial challenge? Play catch up here: