I want to do this!

Pay off all debt before the end of 2018

  • ExplorerSoul
    ExplorerSoul Doing 1 cheers 2017-08-04 03:43:31

    Looking at my budget starting in September, I realized it wouldn't work. I was asked where I could cut if I had to and I didn't see much wiggle room. I just felt discouraged to be honest. The idea of prolonging my deadline again was something I didn't want to consider, especially seeing as how it has already felt so slow. I feel stuck in many ways until this debt is paid.

    But I readjusted and reduced the payment amounts towards my credit cards yet again. It will give me a little bit more breathing room and according to the calculator I've used in the past as well as the balances in update #5 (though the balances have increased since...), the cards could be paid by August of next year. I'm okay with this because it's still within the time frame I had in mind (before the end of 2018). I'm also hoping that by reducing my payments, I won't have to revert to using my cards as I have been (vicious cycle), but part of it is just about better management and better choices, too.

    I'll recalculate once I have the new balances at the end of August and we'll see how things go starting next month.

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  • ExplorerSoul
    ExplorerSoul Doing 1 cheers 2017-07-29 18:18:43

    Still more charges and I'm having trouble keeping track. It ends up being more than I can afford paying back. (Hey, that rhymes.)

    Almost at my limit now for credit card #2 and haven't done groceries yet and there will probably be a few more expenses before the weekend is through. Sigh. I'll get back on track soon.

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  • ExplorerSoul
    ExplorerSoul Doing 2 cheers 2017-07-29 02:52:11

    I used a certain website recently (https://www.myinvestorsbank.com/Resources/Calculators/Make-Bi-Weekly-Payments) to try to see when I would finish paying loan #1.

    According to the information provided, I would have 16 months left with monthly payments and 15 months with bi-weekly payments.

    By making bi-weekly payments, you will repay your loan 1 months earlier and save $58 in interest charges over the remaining term of the loan.

    If this is accurate, I wouldn't be saving much in interest, but it seems I would be paying off my loan in October. I want to verify this because there was one payment I skipped throughout the term of my loan so far.

    I had hoped to pay my loans off sooner so I could use the amounts towards the rest of my debt, but it doesn't look like this will be the case. I'm especially bothered by the amount of my line of credit, and worried in general that I won't have all my debt paid off before the end of 2018.

    Bi-Weekly Loan Payment Calculator | Pay Off Loan | Investors Bank
    Making bi-weekly payments is a popular way to pay off your loan quicker. Use the Bi-Weekly Loan Payment Calculator to see how these payments can help you.
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  • ExplorerSoul
    ExplorerSoul Doing 5 cheers 2017-07-28 20:35:47

    Close to breaking past the 20K mark. Still a long way to go but at least it's moving in the right direction.

    So all is still on track except the credit cards (see July 18 entry). I had planned how I would pay back the charges next month, but recently, I've added more charges to credit card #2 so I'll have to look at things again.

    Thinking about some future goals lately is an added incentive, even if the thought of having zero debt is an incentive in itself.

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  • ExplorerSoul
    ExplorerSoul Doing 3 cheers 2017-07-28 20:13:03

    Update #5 (July 2017)

    Loan #1 (Royal Bank - interest rate increase: 10.08%)
    Last month's balance: $7,682.47
    Planned to pay: regular/minimum monthly payment
    Actually paid: regular/minimum monthly payment
    New balance: $7,265.03

    Loan #2 (Family - interest rate: 0%)
    Last month's balance: $5,200.00
    Planned to pay: regular/minimum monthly payment
    Actually paid: regular/minimum monthly payment
    New balance: $4,900.00

    Credit Card #1 (Royal Bank - interest rate: 11.99% for both purchases and cash advances)
    Last month's balance: $1,776.76
    Planned to pay: $125.00
    Actually paid: $389.07
    New balance: $1880.11

    Credit Card #2 (CIBC - interest rate: 19.99% for purchases and 22.99% for cash advances)
    Last month's balance: $1,796.00
    Planned to pay: $375.00
    Actually paid: $620.89
    New balance: $2,055.00

    Credit Line (CIBC - interest rate: 9.95% - increased again?)
    Starting balance: $4,728.62
    Planned to pay: $100
    Actually paid: $100
    New balance: $4,667.11

    Total debt remaining: $20,767.25

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  • ExplorerSoul
    ExplorerSoul Doing 1 cheers 2017-07-23 19:26:33

    I spoke with the bank recently and confirmed that the increase in interest for loan #1 was due to an increase in the prime rate.

    The main reason for the call was to reconfigure the frequency of my loan payments. I wanted to first confirm whether making two payments instead of one would indeed reduce my interest in the end, and the answer was that it would, but only if I set it up as bi-weekly payments - not bi-monthly.

    Essentially, if I am making payments every two weeks or bi-weekly (depending on how I am paid) as opposed to twice a month or bi-monthly, I would be making the equivalent of one extra month's payment I believe. This made absolute sense, but I hadn't considered this initially when speaking to the previous person because we only talked about making two payments instead of one, or splitting my current payment in two. Because of this, I hadn't budgeted for a third payment when it would be scheduled to go through, which was soon. So we looked at bi-monthly payments instead, which would make no difference in the interest but would be more convenient (making two smaller payments instead of one). In the end, it wasn't possible or logical to start the bi-monthly payments next month due to when they would need to begin. It would have been too soon, or it wouldn't have coincided with my pay dates in future months.

    In the end, after almost an hour on the phone (poor representative), we went back to the bi-weekly payments and I told myself I would figure out the third payment. One issue though was that when looking at this, the payment amounts I was given were less, which would seem to be a good thing but in reality, it seemed the system had just restructured the amounts to have my payments end when they were already scheduled to - at the end of my term. So in the end I didn't feel I was saving at all. I asked if they could increase the amount to what it would have been if I was splitting my current amount in two, and this is what was done. I did ask if I would be paying it off sooner this way and it seemed I would be, but I'm still questioning myself, wondering if the extra amount would have been better to simply pay myself (calling and telling them I would like to put x amount directly towards the principal). I am worried that somehow, by adding this extra amount directly into the loan payment, I am losing out. I was thinking about calling and seeing if they could give me some sort of statement that could show me the interest I am saving in the end. (At this time, my term is set to end in November 2018 if I'm not mistaken, so hopefully this means it will end in October instead.)

    It's unfortunate that the interest amount increased, but it's not by too much and there was always a chance of this. Of course as the principal goes down, the interest will as well.

    On another note, I received an increase on my pay (annual increase). They always say when you receive an increase, you should transfer the difference to a savings account, otherwise you will just end up spending it. I've always told myself that if I received an additional amount or increase in the future, I would do this and that. I always seem to have plans, but when the times comes, it is often a different situation.

    The challenge for me is always figuring out what I should use this extra amount for. Naturally, I would want to use it to make extra payments towards debt and it was my intention to start making additional payments towards loan #1, but then I consider savings and also personal spending, which I often have little money leftover for.

    Now due to a potential additional expense, I don't know if I will be able to use the difference at all until maybe the new year as I will be using it to pay back some money I owe two people.

    I am hoping that starting in January, I can use at least some of the difference towards the principal of my loan, but I forever seem to be playing catch-up so we'll see where things stand at that point.

    I do find myself thinking more about what I would do with the extra money once my debt is paid off. Trying to stay focused on the finish line.

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  • ExplorerSoul
    ExplorerSoul Doing 2 cheers 2017-07-19 03:06:18

    My next update won't be great but the numbers should be back on track by the end of August.

    I've used credit quite a bit but should be able to pay most, if not all, of it back. Still, I'm a little scared to see the numbers.

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  • ExplorerSoul
    ExplorerSoul Doing 3 cheers 2017-07-19 02:40:21

    I wanted to add another goal today but I have no room left!

    I learned about this canoe trail and I envisioned this as a goal I could aim for after I've finished paying off my debt. I felt excited at the thought. Even if this never happens, it felt nice to have a sort of project to look forward to. I haven't researched it in depth yet but it took one man nearly two months to thru-paddle the entire trail. It definitely sounds like it would present some interesting challenges.

    I've also been thinking in general about what I would do if I didn't have debt. Saving would be one of the things for sure. Therapy and some sort of leisure activity would probably be some of the others.

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  • ExplorerSoul
    ExplorerSoul Doing 0 cheers 2017-07-16 03:33:47

    I was checking my accounts and noticed a difference in the balance for loan #1, which then led me to notice an increase in the interest rate. I think it is due to their prime rate increasing (I will verify when I call them again), which is not fun for me when I was just about to try to reduce the interest I am paying.

    Things like this can feel discouraging when it already feels like progress is slow, but I am trying to just accept it and keep moving forward.

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  • ExplorerSoul
    ExplorerSoul Doing 3 cheers 2017-07-06 20:12:40

    Some positive thoughts. My two loans are close to half of their starting amount. I do wish I could make more payments to get things paid off more quickly but for now I just have to be patient.

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