Four Figure Student Loans. W00t!

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Raise your glass in celebration! It's wondrous day!
Raise your glass in celebration! It’s wondrous day!


It seems like just last week I was asking you all if I should pay my student loans down or keep my savings bolstered up. And after some awesome discussion, I decided to plop $3,000 of my savings on those blasted student loans! That brought my total from about $14,000 to just under $11,000. I was pretty excited to see the progress, but to be honest, having these loans the past 4 years, it has felt like they were moving slower than a traffic jam in China (no seriously, look it up!). But today marked a momentous occasion as I can now remove a digit from the total debt left on our student loans.

Less Than $10,000 To Go!

I logged into our Mint.com account to look at our budget yesterday, and a number caught my eye. It was a number I had not seen before, so I scrolled down to take a closer look. It was a fun-looking, four-figured number that was happily sitting under my student loan heading. Wait, did I just see a four-figure number under student loans?! O. M. G.!!!! My eyes weren’t lying to me. Nope, our student loans were comfortably sitting at $9,887.10! W00t!

Student Loan Balance Sept

Having seen our student loans start at $24,000, and watch it slowly but surely drop down over $14,000 really has boosted my motivation for getting rid of these pesky things once and for all. And now that we’ve dropped below 5 figures, I am planning and scheming how I can kill these things faster than Miley Cyrus killed Hannah Montana. I want these things gone, and $200 a month back in our pockets to start putting towards our mortgage and retirement accounts. I want it so bad I can nearly taste it (and it tastes like freedom!)

How Much Longer?

At the beginning of the year, I set an aggressive goal to kill the student loans by the end of the year. Looking back now, that was definitely wishful thinking, but I have been able to knock out about $6k of the loans so far, and there’s 4 months to go! If I can make some things happen this year, I’m hoping to get it down another $2,000 by the end of the year. That would put me at just under $8,000 left on the loan.

Assuming I can earn some extra money through side hustles and being an awesome tax accountant, I believe I should be able to knock out this loan by June next year! That means we could be debt free (except the mortgage) by June 2014! WOOOOOOOHOOOOOOOOO! I can’t even imagine what that will be like, but I’m hoping to find out sooner rather than later. Then I can join the ranks of my fellow student loan killers, like Michelle and Kathleen, and be free from the slavery that is consumer debt forever!

I have a tough road ahead, full of frugal decisions and determination to be debt free, I know that this goal is much more solid than what I set before. I have access to the possibility of extra income online, am still a professional tax accountant, and am always looking for opportunities to move up at work. Combine that with always trying to figure out how to save money and rocking an AWESOME budget, our chances are looking pretty good at becoming DEBT FREE FOREVER in 2014!

Join Me In Celebration

Everyone has their milestones set before them, even if they only seem like a pipe dream at the moment. But join me in celebrating the small wins, because your big win is definitely on the way. Our big win is getting below $10k in debt. What’s yours? Share with us in the comments and help motivate others to see that the small steps do add up to big wins, and those big wins feel great!

Jacob Wade

Jacob Wade

Jacob Wade has been a nationally-recognized personal finance expert for the past decade. He has written professionally for The Balance, The Spruce, LendingTree, Investing Answers, and other widely-followed sites. 
He’s also been a featured expert on CBS News, MSN Money, Forbes, Nasdaq, Yahoo! Finance, Go Banking Rates, and AOL Finance.

In 2018, Jacob quit his job and his family decided to sell everything (including their home) to take off on an adventure. They traveled the country in an RV for nearly 3 years, visiting over 38 states, 20+ national parks and eventually settling in the sunshine state!

39 thoughts on “Four Figure Student Loans. W00t!”

  1. Congratulations Jacob, its always good to reach a milestone. Keep going and that last “few dollars” will be gone in no time at all.

    I challenge you to make the “YAY – I’m debt free (other than mortgage” post in or before May 2014?

    Think you can do it?!

  2. Woo, that’s awesome! That must feel so good knowing that your student loans will be gone soon. I think being under $10k is a great milestone – I am hoping to be in the $14k’s by the end of this month. Slowly but surely the amount is getting lower.

  3. That is awesome, congratulations on the four figure milestone. It will be a couple of years before I can crack the cork for that milestone. I did pat myself on the back for cracking under 40k not to long ago.

  4. Congrats Jacob! That’s a pretty nice milestone to hit. We recently hit 1 year of annual income in retirement savings, which was pretty cool. Always fun and motivating to see progress like that.

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