So last fall, Sean and I jumped at the chance when our church offered a course on Financial Peace University. We first heard about FPU when we were going through the pre-marital counseling my church required in order to marry us. He mentioned some of Dave’s advice on investing young and the debt snowball. At the time, we thought we were both graduating debt free. Then Sean shared that he had his student loans. That’s good debt right?
Along the way, we ran into some situations where we felt it was “okay” to use a credit card and leave a balance or we unexpectedly had to purchase a vehicle. Slowly we realized, we need help if we’re going to get out of this.
Again, why we jumped quickly to attend FPU.
I’ll be the first to admit, timing wise, we didn’t stick to the plan as well as we should until after Christmas. It’s hard not being generous all of a sudden.
But once we buckled down — it started really working! We set a budget and I gave over the reigns of our finances to Sean, and we’re on a really good track. Even when my unexpected surgery came up last month, we saved up (and used a well timed bonus) to make sure we could completely pay for the surgery without batting an eye lash. Including that surgery, we’ve paid over $5,600 in debt, saved our mini Emergency Fund, and have made budgeting really work for us.
We’re now at the point where we’re trying to figure out how we can save even more! Cooking more meals at home, making hand-made gifts, being proactive about expenses. getting most books from the library, starting to use coupons if we go out.
Our splurge recently has been saving for a moving fund.
We think we can get bigger space in a single-family rental than we can in our more “luxury” apartment. We’re saving enough for the down payment and doubling it for moving expenses, pet deposits, etc. I’m excited and somewhat fearful — moving is just awful on me. But the plan is to move someplace where we can establish ourselves, save enough money to put a substantial down-payment on a house (especially after we pay off the rest of the debt), and have a place to call our own.
It all requires more patience than I think I have, but we’ll get there.