January Loan Payoff- My Highest Ever!

Hello February!

January seemed to fly by and to take forever…is that possible? I had a busy month with some great highs and a low or two. I definitely spent a lot more than I intended to in the areas of entertainment and food. More importantly though, I had a great month when it came to debt payoff. In fact, I had my best debt payoff month ever!

All in all, I paid off $1,525 of debt last month. What! Who saw that coming? Where did all that money come from?

$600 of that was money I got from family for Christmas. I specifically asked for money and didn’t give any gifts this year.

$150 was a Christmas bonus I received. My first bonus!

$200 came from four catering events I was able to pick up. (One of the events was New Years Day, which meant time and a half!) I made about $450 total catering, some of which also helped pay for some extra expenses this month, like an oil change, the boyfriends birthday celebrations, and in a moment of weakness, a dinner out.

The rest came from budgeting and throwing whatever funds I could come up with towards my loans. Initially, I was worried I wouldn’t be able to make a large payment this month but that turned out to not be the case. I catered four events, one with extra pay, and I received a slight pay bump from my nonprofit job. I made less in January than I did Oct-Dec, but not as much less as I was expecting.

Most of that $1,525 went to the principle loan balance as well. I paid $49.64 in interest in January. While interest hurts my soul, it is nice that making payments multiple times a month means interest has less time to grow. I made four payments throughout January on one loan, meaning that most of the interest I did pay came from the two loans I’m not focusing on. My privately held loan cost me $20.20 in interest! God, I hate having debt.

I am following the debt avalanche AND the debt snowball method in my payoffs. The debt avalanche method dictates you focus all extra payments on the loan with the single highest interest rate. The debt snowball method dictates you focus all extra payments on the loan with the smallest balance. I’m actually quite lucky, because for some magical reason, my highest interest loans are also my smallest balance loans. I don’t know how that happened but I am grateful for it! I’ve already paid off my 6.8% loan and my 5.75% interest loans. Now I’m focusing on a Stafford loan with a 5.35% interest.

Stafford 2

January starting balance: $3,817.35      Interest Rate: 5.35%

January payments: $1,249.45

New balance: $2,567.90

I’m super thrilled to see such big leaps made in one month on this loan. I’m feeling so hopeful about being able to pay off all my loans within 2015 and not having to bleed over into the first few months of 2016. I don’t expect to pay off quite this much every month. However, if I have a few more months like this, it means less pressure on the months where I can’t pay such large sums. I think of it all this way: the more I do RIGHT NOW, the less I have to do later.

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15 Replies to “January Loan Payoff- My Highest Ever!”

  1. Good for you! Keep that debt snowball rolling!

    1. Just gonna roll it right out of my life!

  2. Way to go! It takes a ton of willpower to throw that much money at a loan, especially on a (presumably) low salary, so nice job!

  3. Thank you! Yes, my salary is pretty low (about 23K after taxes) but I focus on being able to keep all that once I pay off this debt!

  4. You are the poster child for determination and dedication! Great job on January. I know you can’t repeat those kinds of payments every month, but I admire how you stick to your goals and that you can see the end of the tunnel in sight. Give your self a huge pat on the back.

  5. Thanks Tim! It feels amazing. I really feel so empowered by knowing that I’m closing in on being debt free. Makes me want to double my efforts!

  6. Nice work! I loved paying off my student loans. Even though many of them were 0-2% interest, paying them off felt sooooo good. Keep at it.

    1. Thank you! It’s so freeing and honestly empowering to watch the number go down. And congrats to you!

  7. […] I have been able to make great strides on my loans in a short period of time. That’s how I paid off $1,525 last month alone! So while I knew that No-Spend February wasn’t going to yield incredible […]

  8. […] friends, every email I send. It is a long-term plan I am willing to stick to. Having a month where I paid off $1,500 in loans was like having a second Christmas. It doesn’t come without some sacrifice or sweat […]

  9. […] that add up to a low income (about $25,000 this year), it’s a big sacrifice for me to send $1,525 in one month towards my loans. It means a lot of extra work and a lot of extra penny pinching. It means not […]

  10. […] rid of that debt this year. That’s certainly seeming to be the case thus far this year, with big payoffs in the first couple months. And as the balance drops my determination to be debt free only grows […]

  11. […] While the financial loss isn’t huge, it is still a blow. The social media work was my lowest source of income but it was still playing a key role in my debt payoff. That paycheck came in once a month and helped round out my non-debt expenses. Without it I’m looking at cutting back even more and smaller debt payments each month. It’s just a bummer because of the roll I have been on so far this year. […]

  12. […] all added up to big monthly payoffs consistently so far this year. In January I paid off $1,525 (a big part of that was my Christmas money, to be fair). In February, $1,224. In March $2,986. […]

  13. […] debt payments became THE priority in my life. I built everything else around them. And it paid off. January started off with a bang. Then February continued to be a strong showing. It was March though, that set the train in motion […]

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