How We Paid Off $15,000 Of Credit Card Debt Using Coupons
I bet I can guess what you're thinking. You're curious what coupons are gonna help you pay off your credit cards, right?
I hate to be the bearer of bad news; but that's not how this works.
But before I explain how it DOES work, I've gotta give you a quick back story.
You see, in 2009 when the economy took a large downturn, my husband, James, received a large pay cut. We already had a couple thousand dollars of credit card debt at the time so things were tight.
In other words, we had a hard choice to make:
Buy Groceries OR Pay Our Mortgage.
I felt like a complete failure.
Correction: WE felt like complete failures.
Oh, did I forget to mention that I was an accountant before I was a mom, so I should've known better?
Yep, I have an accounting degree, plus I was a "Senior Financial Analyst" for an International Healthcare Company for 5 years before I was a stay-at-home mom.
I was in charge of millions of dollars, yet I couldn't manage my own money once I was a full-time mommy.
Here's what happened:
• I love math (hence my accounting background).
• I learned how to use coupons to pay for our groceries and everyday expenses.
• We then used our own cash to pay off our debt.
It took us 3 years to pay that bad boy off.
$15,000 of credit card debt paid off in 3 years with tiny little $1-$5 increments.
But you know what actually helped us pay off that debt?
Not the coupons. (Nope... that was the fuel to get us to the final destination.)
What helped us pay off all that debt was something every single person has the power to do with a pen and a piece of paper:
SET A GOAL.
Yes, you read that right.
We took a sharpie out and we looked at each other and we wrote down the total dollar amount of our debt.
And then we stared at that blasted paper on the front of our refrigerator every stinkin' day. (Over the Christmas holiday we'd tape the sheet to the back side of a kitchen cabinet to hide it from guests.)
Want a bowl of ice cream, hun? **sees debt goal on front of fridge as getting into the freezer**
Daggone debt keeping us from going to Cold Stone Creamery to get yummy "mix-ins".
Anyone want some popcorn? **sees debt goal on way to pantry to get popcorn**
Man, the movie theater popcorn tastes SO much better than this stuff I just burned in the microwave. Dang! I can't wait to get this debt paid off for GOOD so we can go to the movies whenever we want.
Every couple months we'd recalculate the number and we'd cross off the big number and write a new, smaller, one.
I wish I had held on to that paper to show you. But it felt so good when we had paid off our debt and James and I set that paper on fire in a family bonfire one night. And then we roasted marshmallows I got for free, using coupons.
Now, obviously, coming up with $15,000 takes more than writing a number (goal) on a piece of paper.
Those specific lessons we learned in the 3 years paying off our debt.
And I have good news for you: you don't have to use coupons to pay off debt (I've figured out easier ways for you to do it!).
Do you have debt?
Are you ready to take action and get rid of it?
Because I've got one super simple math equation that'll help you have more money left over at the end of the month:
No Debt Payments = More Money Left Over Each Month!
You'll pay off that debt so so SO much faster if you mentally "rip off the band-aid" and calculate your debt. And write that number down. That's your goal number to ATTACK WITH ALL YOUR MIGHT.
NEW FROM THE BLOG:
Problems Printing Coupons? Are you having problems printing coupons from one of the big coupon sites or from direct links to coupons on manufacturer’s sites? There is not one answer that can fix everyone’s problems. However, here are some tips you can try. Many...
Tonight on the TLC channel there was a new series called "Extreme Couponing". Don't worry if you missed it, the next episode (or a repeat of this one) will air on Jan 10th at 10pm. I know that they do these "Extreme" shows for ratings...but come on. How about just a...
You may have noticed this already, but we have a new Coupon Database! You can find it in the menu at the top of our web page. Simply type any item in the "Search" box to reveal a list of available coupons for that product. ** We could use your help in keeping the...
WOW!! Feels like I haven't been around here much lately... Here's what has been going on...I've been asleep! For real...I basically caught a really bad cold, and because of all the sleep deprivation my body could not fight it off...so it shut down and slept (for a...
Yay! Start planning ahead for the 2011 New Year of Coupon Inserts 😀 ~ January ~ 2 - (2) SmartSource (2) RedPlum and General Mills 9 – (2)SmartSource and RedPlum 16 - SmartSource and Proctor & Gamble 23 - SmartSource and RedPlum 30 - SmartSource and (2)RedPlum ~...
You may have noticed the addition of Upromise coupons in our store matchups lately, but do you really know how Upromise works? Here's a quick primer in all things Upromise... What is Upromise? Upromise is a way to save money for college without really doing anything...
UPDATE: Kati's Mother-in-Law should be home in time for Christmas! It looks like she did not sustain any long term injuries from the fall. They will follow up with more tests after Christmas. Thank you all for your prayers! Please continue to pray for her. I know...
Looking for last minute classic toys? Starting Monday, December 20th and running through December 23rd, shop Back To Basics Toys and receive 2-Day Shipping for only $10 or Next Day Shipping for only $15 PLUS Free Ground Shipping on orders over $75 at...
My 4 year old came to me last week and asked if she could give a gift to everyone in her Mother's Morning Out class. After some quick Mommy thinking, I remembered a candy recipe my Mother-in-Law had given me for "Kreppein Kandy". In addition to being able to give a...
Here are a couple of unique food gift ideas for you... Shari's Berries offers nearly 200 products ranging from their signature hand-dipped berries (these look YUM!), to bakery fresh hand-dipped cookies, to truffles, to luxurious cheesecakes and much more. Send...
Do you like Christmas music? Do you like FREE? Amazon is counting down the days till Christmas by offering a new FREE music download each day! Some of the music may not be your taste (nor mine, LOL), but you can pick and choose the ones you would like to download. So...
Stockpiling WHEN in 2010 Alright, since I am an anal retentive accountant (hey, at least I can admit it), I decided to go through all my old receipts from last year (2009) and see what went on sale WHEN. It seemed like many things came up over and over and over (like...