State of the Frugal Union

Frugal State of the Union February 2021

Wowee! It has been ages and ages since I’ve done a Frugal State of the Union post. In fact, the last time I did one, I’m pretty sure frugal husband and I were both still working second jobs! We had so. many. payments. So what has changed? Well, as mentioned, I got a substantial raise at work that allowed both of us to stop working our second jobs. Husband also has gotten smaller but significant raises in the mean time as well. Also, as mentioned, we sold our house! This was not for financial reasons, but more for safety as mentioned in one of my previous posts, but it did allow us to pay off a big chunk of credit card debt.

In other news, we refinanced our new mortgage as soon as we could! We were carrying the mortgages for both houses originally, so we only qualified for a 30 year on the new house. Upon refinancing, we dropped out mortgage interest by 1% (to 2.75%) and went down to a 15 year mortgage. The payment is about $500 more than the mortgage on our old house, but not undoable. I know I would tell myself that I’d pay a 30 year like a 15, but I’d find another place for that money so 15 felt right, and I’ll be thanking past me in 15 years! Also nice to learn that the new house appreciated in value by almost 60k within 5 months of purchase, partly because it was a foreclosure and we did some work before moving in (it really wasn’t bad), and partly because with Covid, everyone is moving out to the boonies and we live in the boonies.

So all good news aside, here’s were we stand with our most recent numbers:

House: $247,880

Credit Card 1= $11,999

Credit Card 2= $5,500

Student loans: 188,000

BOTH cars are PAID OFF!

Our goals for this year are to completely pay off the credit card debt, and (finally), start chipping away at the student loans. We are considering the mortgage to already be at the “aggressive” pay off stage since so much of our payment is already going straight to principal so that will stay as is. We’ve also upped our retirement contributions because retirement waits for no man. We’re trying to strike a balance between getting our student loans out of the way and putting money away. Husband’s student loans should be forgiven in 6ish years if the programs remain the same as he works in public service, so that will wipe out about 65k, my loans are the biggest.

When we started this journey we had $78,000 in consumer debt and private student loans, and we’re now down to $17,499, I can’t really believe it. We still have a lot of hard work to do, and this last stretch is going to be a marathon not a sprint, but it finally feels doable. One day and one step at a time. I know I say it at the end of every post, but hopefully I’ll post again soon.

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