Well, I went down to the credit union yesterday evening after work and wrote the check that pays off the truck! I should get the title in a couple of weeks after they process the loan.
In the process of paying the truck off, I learned a few things. First, I saw the difference that freeing up an additional $200/month can do. Secondly, I noticed that when I am in “spending mode” (buying things for the house), I am not keeping as close track on our money as I am when I am in “pay it off” mode. This year, I haven’t been making any extra payments against the credit card debt – we’ve been getting settled in the new house, buying things in preparation for the baby, etc., etc. Buying a little of this, a little of that, eating out “just this once” because we’re “too tired to cook” can really wreak havoc on one’s finances.
Now we are back in “pay it off” mode. We’ve pre-paid for the pregnancy, so there is a little more expense right before the baby comes, but not much, and we’ve got about two months to go before those expenses hit, giving me plenty of time to save up for it. I took the money that was going to the truck every month, and, for a while, intend on putting it against the credit cards. (You’ll notice that the balance on the credit cards jumped a little over $2,400 in correlation of the truck dropping to zero.)
If some expense begins to overwhelm us, or we have to adjust our debt reduction number a bit because of some unexpected expense, then so be it – currently we should be able to pay the minimum monthly payment against the credit card every week.
Another thing I plan on doing is going back to my goal setting and Thursday updates. Now that I should be sending more against the credit card than the minimum payment, I should set goals for that, and I think the Thursday updates really helped with that aspect of it. Of course, with my wife’s job trickling down to nothing here in the next few weeks, and me only working the one job, the days of $500+ weeks are gone, but it should still help motivate.
The cool thing is, I fully own one of the two vehicles we drive now!!