Well, life in March may be crazy, but you guys did an awesome job smashing debt in February! We smashed nearly $100K of debt between us!
Let’s go back to February for a minute and celebrate you amazing financial accomplishments and talk about your big wins and how you did it!
It’s so motivating to read of everyone’s sacrifices and hard work. Your efforts are definitely paying off! As you’ll read below, you guys did awesome in February!
For those who are new here, in 2019 we had a Debt Smash-athon! Everyone was invited to participate by reporting how much you paid in debt each month. We also kept track of how much we invested for retirement and saved for our big goals.
Well, we’re doing it again in 2020! If you want to learn more and join this debt smashing movement, you can join the fun here.
Let’s start with the numbers, even though the best part is all of your personal thoughts and accomplishments. You’ll find those after the numbers.
February Debt Smash-athon Totals
During February, we collectively put $99,344 toward debt!
Way to go friends!!
Of the 31 of you who completed the Debt Smash-athon report for February, 94% reported putting money toward debt in February. That averages out to $3,426 per Debt Smasher, with a median of $1,591 paid in debt.
As a group, we invested $21,751 toward retirement! 65% of respondents reported retirement savings.
We also put a total of $44,633 toward big savings goals other than debt and retirement. 65% of respondents saved money for a big goal in February.
When you put that all together, the 31 total reporters made $165,728of financial improvement in February! Wow! That’s huge!
Each month I have a special prize for a randomly selected Debt Smasher who reported his or her progress.
This month’s winner will get their own copy of the Debt Snowball Calculator. I shared what it does and why I think it’s great for anyone who is working to payoff student loans or credit cards (or any other non-mortgage debt). It’s definitely worth checking out!
The winner will also get Frugal Fresh Start, the book behind January’s Frugal Fresh Start Challenge!
February’s randomly chosen winner is Ingrid! I’ll be in touch Ingrid!
Beyond the numbers
We all know that numbers aren’t the only indication of progress. Even with small numbers, we still make important progress as we change our course and build better money habits.
I was blown away by all of your accomplishments this month. I picked a variety of the wonderful responses to share with you below.
“We paid off my husband’s car! We now have 2 reliable vehicles and no car payment!” ~Brandy
“I am paying off my last credit card!” ~Deb
“Car loan is 2/3 of the way paid off, and total debt is halfway paid off!” ~Bethany
“Mortgage under six figures FOR THE FIRST TIME EVER!!!” ~Linda
“Zeroing my haunting credit card debt!!” ~Rick
“I paid off my home equity loan in February which I had used to buy a rental house. Sold the rental house last year due to the market being hot and then waited to pay off the home equity until I had no pre-payment penalty. So glad to have the rental experience behind me.” ~Chris
“We used our large tax return to cut the amount of our car loan in half!” ~Torrie
“Have cash saved to pay for the last semester of hubby’s PhD! No loans and done this summer (fingers crossed). So proud of him and us for making this happen without debt.” ~Shannon
“I created a sinking fund and started filling it with my tax return!” ~Kolia
“I submitted my bar application, and paid for it in cash that I had been saving for this occasion. It stung to be out almost $1k in a single moment, but it was nice knowing that I had set a goal, and met it!” ~Becky
“We really dedicated ourselves toward debt pay off. After a brutal January with medical bills and car repair we were able to be aggressive in our debt payoff journey.” ~Sherrie
“We got a sizable tax refund, and used 3/4 of it to pay down debt (including eliminating one of our two credit card debts). We used some of the rest of it to pay cash for several purchases we have been waiting to pay cash for, including a beautiful (used) dining room table that we needed for our growing family. I also picked up another couple jobs this month. We had our monthly meeting, and there was almost nothing but good news.” ~Austin
What was the key to your success?
“Side hustling – every little bit helps!” ~Danielle
“I printed out tracking coloring charts to keep track of our progress. They are very motivating!” ~Brooke
“Putting our tax return toward debt repayment.” ~Jen
“I made an effort not to spend too much on groceries. I ate what I had. Also, I worked my side hustle delivering groceries as much as possible.” ~Emily
“24 hour waiting period to see if I REALLY needed items.” ~Kolia
“Tracking expenses in YNAB and frequent conversations about upcoming expenses to see which ones are actually important and which ones can put off a bit longer.” ~Jess
“Stayed off Amazon and went to Goodwill and DollarTree” ~Charlyn
“Making a clear plan for our money… and automatic transfers!” ~Brandy
“After being a stay at home dad for 5 years, my husband got a new job! I’m super motivated to use this new income to mostly pay down debt and not change our lifestyle too much.” ~Jackie
“Putting even small amounts toward my savings goal rather than mindlessly spending it.” ~Sheila
“Stay focussed and seeing my debt (slowly) disappear” ~Engel
“Put 75% of my tax refund and 100% of my credit card cash rewards to debt payoff!” ~Winnie
“We got a big bonus which all went towards student loans. It felt frustrating at first but when we saw the student loan amount get below $180,000 if felt great and motivated us to do more!” ~Lisa
“We rocked our grocery/household spending this month!” ~Nicole
Join Us in the Debt Smash-athon!
It’s not just me who’s excited about this. This is what fellow Debt Smashers are saying:
“I love this motivating challenge!” ~Danielle
“I wasn’t feeling like it was that good of a month til I took the time to look back and see the progress. Thanks for that opportunity.” ~Shannon
Well, $165,728 of financial improvement among us is fabulous! Hopefully, you can continue to smash debt in March despite the worlwide craziness.