This update isn’t one that I’ve been looking forward to sharing on the blog. In general, everyone here in the debt-free community is making strides to decrease their debt, no matter the cost. While I really have made some fantastic progress in our debt freedom journey, debt is sometimes necessary in today’s world. We’ve been trying to build our credit to buy a home – which requires taking on some debt. Additionally, we desperately needed a new car that fit our new family.
So, without further ado, here’s my confession and a look at the latest debt numbers.
Why We Took on More Debt
There are a number of reasons our family decided to take on more debt after we’d paid a generous amount off. First, I recently talked about how we’d like to buy a home this year. To do that, we need to have a good payment history. As you know, in the past, many of our bills went into collections before they were settled. So, keeping things current is relatively new for us.
It’s exciting because, after time, it will allow us to build the life we want. However, taking on more debt wasn’t ideal. It never is.
On top of needing to build up some credit, we also had some medical emergencies that needed to be paid for. That went on the credit card! Things are tight and that’s how it is sometimes.
We also desperately needed a new car. Our little hatchback Golf GTI was no longer cutting it, especially on road trips. Between the car seat, stroller, highchair, and any luggage we needed, the car was slammed full. If we wanted the dog to tag along, forget about it! So, we decided to upgrade to an Audi Q3. It’s nice, reliable, and something our family will be able to drive for some time. Most people will say we didn’t need to spend that amount on a car, but we’ve got a good plan for paying it off early.
A Look At The Numbers
Now, the moment you’ve been waiting for. Here’s a look at the updated numbers…
- Credit cards: $1,108 (up from $0 last year)
- Collections: $1,205
- Car loans: $34,640 (up from $16K)
- Student loans: $24,185
Two notes here – our credit card balances are higher right now due to paying for a medical emergency, as mentioned above. Additionally, I have not made any payments on my student loans as the Biden Administration is still figuring out what is going on there. Tentatively, I will have 50% of my loans forgiven, which would be fantastic. So, we are just waiting on the decision from the state of NC now.
Where the car loan is concerned, we are paying more than the required monthly payment. We will also be looking into getting it refinanced within a year or so.
Our Philosophy Moving Forward
We definitely have more debt than we did this time last year, but things have changed drastically for our family. Our new philosophy moving forward is to change with what our family unit needs. Whether that is a bigger, more reliable vehicle that is still under warranty, or it is buying our own home (hopefully later this year), we are willing to bend and change for whatever is needed.
Readers, have you ever found yourself taking on more debt when you didn’t expect to? Let me know about your experiences in the comments.
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Amanda Blankenship is the Director of Social Media for District Media. In addition to her duties handling everything social media, she frequently writes for a handful of blogs and loves to share her own personal finance story with others. When she isn’t typing away at her desk, she enjoys spending time with her daughter, husband, and dog. During her free time, you’re likely to find her with her nose in a book, hiking, or playing RPG video games.