January 2015 Debt Update

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January 2015 debt updateI’m happy to finally be able to write this post. I’m excited and ready to get the ball rolling. Today is the day that I finally start the debt repayment plan back up. It has been over a year since my last debt update. It’s time to seriously get this thing rolling. Let’s get to the January 2015 debt update.

At this moment, I currently have over $72,000 worth of debt. That’s a lot of freaking money. You may be wondering how it got that high. I didn’t take out the maximum amount of student loans or go crazy with credit cards. My biggest problem was interest and late fees specifically with my student loans. I seriously didn’t take the loans serious my first couple of years out of college. With interest and late fees, the loan amounts have increased significantly. One day I realized that for me to start making real moves in life I can’t have debt anymore.

If you’ve read my previous posts you’ll remember where I said that I still plan to have some sort of life while I’m paying off these loans. I still feel that way. I will be using principles from Dave Ramsey’s Total Money Makeover and T. Harv Eker’s Secrets of The Millionaire Mind. I will be paying off my debt from smallest to largest using the debt snowball effect. Here is a post explaining what the debt snowball. Like I stated above, I plan to still have a life. I won’t be wasting much money. I will cook and be home a lot more. The one thing that I won’t stop doing is traveling, though. It’s my addiction. I only travel 3-4 times per year anyway.

How do I plan to make this happen?

The first thing I plan on doing is going back on The Price is Right (Just kidding). I plan to continue to create multiple streams of income.  I have a full-time 9-5 job. I am looking for a part-time gig to work a couple of days each week. I am selling multiple items on eBay. I am also looking to make more money online. Finally, I will continue to sell t-shirts at my NomadTees big cartel store.

Some people think I’m crazy. I’ve heard people say forget them loans and just wait for them to be forgiven in 10 years since I work in higher ed. Forget that. That’s not an option; I plan on being debt-free before then.

I want to make this happen by October 17th, 2018. That is 3 years and 9 months from today. That will also be my 35th birthday. Having no more student loan debt will be a hell of a birthday gift.

The debts that I will be eliminating are my Sallie Mae student loans, Discover credit card, Loan 2, Wells Fargo loan, Bank of America credit card, Credit Union Loan, and Fed student loans.  (Note. The Fed loans are currently in deferment. I still plan on putting $50-$100 $10-$20 on them each month.) Below is a chart of the debt.

I have a long way ahead of me. One of the key things that I learned from last year was to “Do what others won’t do“. Well here goes. Make sure you check back for my monthly updates!

You can view all my debt updates here.


  1. Good luck! I am sure with determination, you will be able to do it. It’s also good that you will take time to enjoy what you like. Travel. 🙂

  2. Wow! I am so impressed that you are so proactive with this Jason!!! And have taken full responsibility… Think I’ll check out those T-shirts too! I’m looking forward to the updates!!

  3. Paying off debts is a big decision! It can be tough, but really rewarding at the end of it. Being debt-free is a great feeling. Good luck on your goals!

    1. Thank you. I have a long way to go but I can’t wait to feel that feeling.

  4. I don’t have as much debt as you but I have been paying down the divorce debt for years and I can now see the light at the end of the tunnel. I also paid more money on the lowest bill and once that bill was paid off I added that money to what I was paying on the next lowest bill to Pau that one off faster. It’s those little nagging 50 – 150 dollar bills that kill your bank account. Once you knock those out things get a little easier. Good luck

  5. Hi Jason

    Debt isn’t cool at all and being debt free is a worthy goal. I commend you for taking the time to create a plan and also initiating your plan this year kudos.

    I hope you have blogs that you are following that help you save more. You can check out tips by frugalsoldier.com by Nathaniel or frugalforeveryone.ca by Lenie showing your money saving shopping tips.

    Thanks for sharing. Looking forward to keep tabs of your progress.

    1. Thanks for the suggestions. I am following a lot of money blogs.

  6. This is awesome, Jason! I really like that you’re owning up to your mistakes and taking responsibility for your loans. I’ve heard of too many people just “hoping” for forgiveness (when they’re not eligible) or that policies will change. Student loan debt isn’t fun – I would know – but it’s taught me a lot of financial lessons I wouldn’t have learned otherwise. Good luck!

  7. The next time you see Sallie Mae tell her I’m so glad she is out of my life. I believe this lender have been violating students for years, and if I could set up a protest with obscene picket signs against them I would. The day I paid them off was a glorious day. Good luck with your repayment plan.

    1. Thank you. I would be there with you in the protest.

  8. Well congratulations to you for just wanting to do what others won’t do and not waiting to (maybe) take the easy route and hoping the loans will be forgiven. It may seem like a big hurdle to overcome right now, but stay focused and on track. It will be such a sense of accomplishment when you are fine!

    1. I can’t wait for that day.

  9. With strong belief, hard work and determination, you can clear your debts. It’ll feel like a huge weight off your shoulder!

  10. Wow! That is a lot of debt and I am happy and proud of you for taking positive action to re-pay those debts. I thought I heard that President Obama was going to make it possible for certain student loans or the interest on them to be forgiven. I may be wrong about this. It’s great that you will still be able to travel since travel can be costly. Then again, travel can also be inexpensive, depending on how you approach it. You are young, which is certainly in your favor on all counts. I wish you the best.

  11. Wonderful website. Plenty of useful information here. thanks on your sweat!

  12. Good for you for taking responsibility and working to pay off your debt. You have a long road ahead, but it sounds as if you have it well planned out and are determined. There are a lot of reasons people wind up with debt, but I think it is a shame how much debt students have to accumulate to get an education and they are often not in great positions after finishing school to immediately make substantial headway in paying it off.

  13. I was in that situation too. Getting the ammount down helps you pay them off faster. Good luck.

  14. Jason, you’re such a great example of how someone can start to pay off debt when they really start to focus on getting it done. However, I think going on the Price is Right for a second time is a fabulous back-up plan 😉

    1. A 2nd visit on the Price is Right would be lovely. Too bad they haven’t returned my phone calls 🙂 .

  15. Jason when I got out of college I didn’t take my student loan debt seriously either. That was a long time ago so the total did build up as much but I pretty much did the same thing. Good luck with getting caught up.

  16. I admire your determination to eradicate your debt in a logical manner. The Best book/practice I found was How to Get What You Want in Life With The Money You Already Have by Carol Keeffe. I’d go through a financially devastating divorce and in true Scarlett O’Hara fashion, I swore to never go hungry (ok, be poor, I always ate!) again. This book is out of print, but Amazon usually has it floating around. Good basic money management and a way to indulge in the things important to us–like your travel. The first year I put the principals into practice, I took a 3 week, unpaid vacation–paid for a head of time. My income hadn’t changed, my approach to money did. Okay, enough from me. Best of luck!

    1. A 3 week unpaid vacation??? I’m interested. I need to add this book to my reading list.

  17. Congrats on working so hard at this. My husband has a similar story. He started with $50,000 is student loan debt and let it grow to $70,000. This was because he was so busy paying off the credit cards he lived on while in school. He has spent the last 3 years bringing it down to $50,000 again. It is crazy that people have to put themselves in so much debt to get an education. With the determination you are putting forward, I am sure you will hit your goal!

  18. It takes a lot of determination to “live like no one else” as Dave Ramsey says. Good luck with your journey to debt freedom.

    1. Thanks. I have no choice but to make it happen.

  19. Congrats for setting a goal and having the confidence. I recently just paid off a significant amount of debt and it feels so good. I used to get stressed out about it and now I don’t have to worry about it anymore!

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