By April 2017 my fiancé Miles and I had hit rock-bottom. We had lived the past year and half of our relationship like we didn’t have a care in the world. Unfortunately all those cares came and hit us all at once.
2017 started off with a big move and it set off the beginning of the end to our lavish lifestyle. January 6, 2017, Miles and I moved from Salt Lake City, Utah to Las Vegas, Nevada. We both were offered a great opportunity here in Las Vegas and could not pass it up. Due to the circumstances, the first month we were here we ate out for Every. Single. Meal. I kid you not, we did not have a working kitchen and everything we ate was fast food. We both felt like crap and thought as soon as we were able to, we would stop eating out. I completely neglected our bills for the month of January and all our money from the month went to food. I don’t know how much we actually spent during that time and I really don’t want to know.
Even though we said we would stop eating out as soon as we could, we didn’t. We got into a rental house the first weekend of February and kept right on with our bad habits. Only worse, this time we were buying groceries AND fast food, then not even eating the groceries. We were always sick and nothing ever sounded good to eat. On April 27th I opened up the Wellsfargo App, grabbed a used envelope, and added up all the food we had bought for the month so far- groceries and all. 900 freakin dollars. HOW. How can two people spend over $900 on food in a freakin month??
Not only were we spending an outrageous amount on food, we also had maxed out credit cards, two car loans, a motorcycle loan, student loans, miles had tool account balances, and we also owed our parents money. I couldn’t believe how we had gotten ourselves into such a mess. A couple days later my mom decided to mention to me that my aunt had received a call from a debt collector who was trying to contact me. My heart dropped and I had a little bit of a mental breakdown. I may have been in a major mess, but I had never been sent to collections before. I thought I was up to date on all my bills and I just couldn’t handle the stress any longer. That night, Miles and I cut up all of our credit cards (except 2 – for emergencies only) and decided we were done eating out. We were done living chained to our debt and wanted out.
Something I did over the next few days, which I had never done before, was add up all of our debt. I have never been so sick to my stomach as when I saw the grand total. I never ever ever could have imagined we were that far into debt. Here is a breakdown of what we owed:
Credit Cards – $13,840.47
Car/Motorcycle Loans – $35,098.47
Student Loans – $11,574.81
Cell Phones – $1,980.70
Parents – $900.00
Tool Accounts – $18,185.68
This makes for a grand total of $81,580.13. We were over $80,000 in debt. WHAT!
So not only were we spending $900 a month on food, every one of our credit cards was maxed out, and we were $80,000 in debt. Miles and I were over-consuming and living well out of our means. These balances don’t even show that we were paying over $400 a month for insurance, we had to pay for gas, and we payed rent which was $700 a month.
At this point, we were barely able to pay our bills every month, let alone eat or pay for gas. Being in this type of situation Miles and I went on a fast-food ban. This ban only included us paying for fast food, it didn’t include when my dad would take us to dinner every Wednesday or when our work would buy us lunch. It only meant we weren’t going to spend money eating out. We have been two weeks without eating out (with a small seven-11 hiccup at the beginning) and we plan on going out to lunch ONCE this upcoming weekend. The first week of our ban we spent about $175 on groceries, the second week we only spent $40. Eating at home for every meal is still quite new to me but if I have any advice for beginners, it’s “variety”.
This first month of our Debt Repayment is going to consist of us playing catch up with some bills and once we are able to pay everything on time, we are going to start chipping away as much as we can and as quickly as we can. We plan to sell one of our cars and the motorcycle will get rid of a huge chunk of debt. In upcoming blogs I will talk about our weekly meal planning and our monthly incoming and outgoing numbers, just to get a little more specific.
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