Our Combined Debt Payoff is Complete! $60K in Debt Paid Off in 13 Months!!!

Today was a monumental day!

I placed a little stamp on an envelope addressed to my friend, Alicia.  Inside was a couple of passes for Old McDonald Farm in Rapid City (ones we forgot to use while we were there), a free carwash, an Activity Card for checking out equipment at Hart Ranch RV Resort, and a check.

But the check was the real prize!  Not because it was a lot of money, but because it was the final debt payoff payment.Continue Reading

Combined Debt Payoff Update ~ Working on the Final Debt

We have great news on the Combined Debt Payoff!!

3-Families-Debt-Free-TogetherThe third family is on their FINAL debt ~ a student loan for $33K and their van was just paid off!

So far, all 3 families have paid about $31K in debt for the past 7 months!  That’s a whole lot of moolah!

Some may ask how this all works out so well?

Accountable. All 3 families are close friends, we see each other on a regular basis (at least weekly).  We’re not out buying new cars or anything and we’re respecting one another to stick to the plan.

Disciplined.  This is the “just like you” part of the post.  I will say that Mark and I are LEARNING to be disciplined with our money.  Because of our downsized life, we have extra money we intended to put toward the debt.  But several things have come up, unexpected trips, van repairs, camper freeze issues, needing new jeans because of post baby body.  Little by little the extra cash has trickled away.  We are motivated and rejuvenated and making better decisions.

*  One thing I’ll say works better for us is that we have been consulting our financial advisors friends about more of our money decisions. (And let me just say that there are some HUGE ones in the works that I’m very excited about but refuse to spill the beans just yet).

Committed. We each look at the $800/month contribution as a bill.  A non-negotiable bill. We’re committed to seeing everyone debt free and by golly it’s happening.

Motivated. We’re in this together and we see debt melting away at a much faster pace than if we were to do this on our own. That is motivating friends. I cannot tell you how unbelievably blessed we are to see burdens lifted and doors open because of the debt being gone.

Where We Stand With Our Goal

Aside from our monthly contributions to the debt, our next big pay down will be with the tax returns.  Come on W-2’s and bank statements!!  We’re hoping to get $10K between the 3 families so we can knock the final student loan way down.

We had some things fall through at the end of year as far as extra income.  That along with the extra $3K on the student loan adds 2 more months onto the payoff (the 10 month plan). But on the bright side, we had originally planned for 15 months.

All this to say, we couldn’t be happier with where everything stands and see light at the end of the tunnel.

We welcome any questions about this whole debt thing.  The response has been overwhelmingly positive and we appreciate the support.  We’ll update on the debt as things change.  Thank you for the support!

Blessings to You!




UPDATE – Combined Debt Payoff – 2nd Family Debt Free

Thursday, we got an email from Gordon & Sarah.

They paid their student loan off and are now debt free.


And it was ahead of schedule!  Way!

Those of you who have not heard, we covered the debt pay off here.

Originally when we prayed and decided to do this together, we estimated it would take us about 15 months for all 3 families to be debt free.

The rate that we’ve actually been able to do this is staggering.

As it is right now, we are set to be done with the debt in 10 months!  10 months friends!!  10 months!

We are all kinda scratching our heads about it.  Here are the factors we think have contributed to the advancement (putting it in numbers, it ends up being and extra $7,200 that we’ve put towards it in the past 5 months)

  1. The Mighty God we serve.
  2. Extra remodel work Jamie has gotten.
  3. Additional money Mark and Gordon have gotten to throw at the debt (from extra work or selling things)

Really, we believe that the Lord is to credit for all of this as He has blessed us and our efforts!  That is an understatement in fact.

We also got word from the 3rd family that their original numbers were a little off.  Instead it’s about $43,000.  No biggie….we’re so happy to be on the last family’s debt.

We so motivated to finish this up.  And it feels great!

Combined Debt Pay-Off

This is Mark, the hubby.  I thought I would contribute a bit to the blog since we are a family and all.


We are doing something radical with our debt.  Actually 3 families are.  We are combining our debt and paying each others off.

My purpose in telling you this is to hopefully encourage you to do the same or something similar.

First let me introduce you to the families and the debt….

  • Mark & Julie ($9,500)
  • Gordon & Sarah ($11,000)
  • Jamie & Alicia ($40,000)

The debt above does not include mortgages…it is basically comprised of car and student loans.

The 3 families above want to be debt free (who doesn’t??), so we decided to do something radical.  We are paying off each others debts.  Our debt is combined (just on paper) and we’re paying it off.  Together.  The debt between the 3 families totals about $60,000.

Credit for this idea goes to Gordon.  Actually, I think Gordon stole the idea from the book of Acts 2:44-45 (from the Bible).

“And all that believed were together, and had all things common; And sold their possessions and goods, and parted them to all men, as every man had need.”

How Our Combined Debt Pay Off Works

  • Each family contributes $800/month to paying towards the debt.
  • One family receives the $2,400 monthly until their debt is paid off.
  • The next family receives the $2,400 monthly until debt-free.
  • And the last family receives the $2,400 until we are completely debt-free.

Pretty simple really.  I just wanted to be clear.

We started collectively paying this debt off June, of this year.  The order the debt was paid off is in the order of the families listed above.

So ours was the first to go.  Gordon had $4,000 in savings that he contributed right away.  Jamie’s family and ours paid some extra money too and it was gone in 2 months.

Next we went to Gordon & Sarah’s.  At the time of this post, we are trackin’ to be done before the end of October.  *UPDATE* We wrote about finishing Gordon and Sarah’s debt, here.

Lastly, we will get rid of Jamie and Alicia’s.

So you might be saying, “Wow Jamie and Alicia are making out on this deal and the other families are getting hosed!

Not so fast!!!

We All Benefit From This

For starters, Jamie and Alicia are working hard doing side work (he is in construction/remodeling) and are contributing quite a chunk of extra cash.

Next, we are all getting our debt paid off sooner by doing this together.  How?  We are more disciplined to make the financial sacrifice because we’re in this together and accountable.  (without this, we’d likely be making the minimum payments)

Lastly, we get to be blessed by helping friends that we love.  Acts 20:35

“It is more blessed to give than to receive.”

Is it hard to give $800 a month to someone else?


But not because we don’t trust each other.  It is hard because we have to make sacrifices to afford to pay that amount of money (which we will go into at a later date to offer our take on budgeting)

We have known these 2 families for just over 2 years.  We are close friends though and love Jesus!  We love each other enough to sacrifice for one another.

What we are doing is pretty out of the ordinary.

But we are ordinary people.  We like to live comfortably, eat at nice restaurants, and buy stuff.  If we can do something like this….imagine what extra-ordinary people could do!

If all goes as planned, we’ll all be debt free by next summer.

There you have it folks, but since I hate writing, I’m outta here.

Grace and Peace.