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Your Debt Diary is a guest blog series by money bloggers and members of the debt free community for My Debt Diary. Each week someone new will share their debt story. This week Grainne from WannaBeDebtFree shares her debt free journey experience and the reasons why she felt the need to pay off her debt so quickly.
What stage are you at in your debt free journey right now?
I’m debt free (said in the style of a Dave Ramsey debt free scream!). My partner and I started with around £16k last year and after he was put at risk of redundancy and I realised that we were putting ourselves under pressure to earn a certain amount each month. We set ourselves the goal to pay it off in one year and revamp our budget. Just over a (tough) year later, we have no debt and are looking to start building some savings. I’d also like to learn some balance with money as this is an area in which I admittedly struggle, so I’m working on that too.
What is your debt total?
Zero, nilch, nada! But I literally have no savings now, which is pretty scary.
What is your “why”?
Originally, my “why” was to take some financial pressure off my partner and I. We were both earning decent money, yet every month was a struggle to make it to payday. I wanted to figure out where we were going wrong, and clear our debt, in order to see of that money in the bank or at least have the freedom to change jobs. When we finished paying off our debt, we both decided to reduce our working hours to get a better work/life balance and spend time with friends and family.
Nowadays, as we stand staring at the mountainous savings goal ahead, my new “why” is basically my five year plan; we are planning on getting married in April and I’d like to start a family and actually be at home with them as much as possible. I want to put our money into building a passive income so that we can be the sort of parents that are there for every school meeting, and have a marriage where we can go out for lunch on a Tuesday afternoon together just because we can, instead of being in work all the time!
Are you following a specific plan or method?
I loosely follow the Dave Ramsey Baby Step method because it’s very simple, however, once you get beyond Baby Step 3 it becomes somewhat irrelevant for us UK-based debt repayers! So I’ll be following my own plan soon, including paying off our mortgage, buying an investment property and fully funding my pension.
What are you doing to speed up the progress of your money goals?
Being as engaged as I can with like-minded people! While difficult for me to find them in real life, the Instagram #debtfreecommunity is a great place to get motivated, and I find it really helped me to share my journey with this community. I’m also completely obsessed with budgeting (sad I know). I do like to shop and consider myself to be generous towards others with my money, but at the same time, I find that having a plan is key to making your debt free dreams a reality. Especially when your plan includes a treat, because treat yoself!