We paid off 62k of student loans in 6 weeks!!

Student loans
This dude knows how I feel about student loans!

Every two weeks, I’ll be posting a quick bi-weekly update on how our student loan debt payoff is progressing.

That way, I’m more on the hook to keep on track with goals. If I’m slacking off, feel free to yell at me in the comments! I need the motivation ;o)

Current loan status:

When I started this blog 6 weeks ago, my husband and I had a combined 156k in student loans. I owed 111k, and my husband owed 45k. Pretty scary stuff!

By August 14th, our combined student loan debt was down to $103,474.

Now, 2 weeks later, we’ve gotten our combined student loans down to $93,572. Meaning, since starting this blog 6 weeks ago, we’ve already paid off $62,428 in debt. Eeek!

The husband’s debt is now down to $13,598 from 45k. His goal is to pay it all off by the end of 2017.

My loans are down to $79,772 from 111k. My goal is to get down to 55k by the end of the year.

Achieving this means we would have paid off 101k in student loans in 5.5 months. I can’t even describe how amazing that will feel.

What we did:

Here’s what we did to pay off $9,902 in loans in the last 2 weeks.

Monthly Expenses:
  • In the last 2 weeks, we weren’t able to apply the full 46% of our after tax income to our loans because I increased what I gave to family this month.
  • I gave my little sister two thousand in tuition assistance. The money was an incentive to get A’s in 4 difficult summer classes she took, while working full time. She kicked butt so I paid up!
  • I also helped one of my older sisters cover almost a thousand in medical bills and copays, which were unexpected.
  • Aside from this, we did great again in the last two weeks with keeping our flexible costs low. Our grocery costs still remained ultra low.
  • We’re also investing 21% of our take home pay (up from 19%). Once our loans are paid off, we’ll get this up to 65%.
SPIFF:
  • I participated in one SPIFF at work, and got an additional $1000, after tax.
  • I’m competing for a 10k SPIFF, to be paid at the end of October.
  • To win, I have to have the highest billable utilization in my department until then. Doable, except there’s some tough competition! EVERYONE wants that money ;o)
Side Consulting:
  • I’m continuing to consult on Upwork on the side. I’m still struggling like I was 2 weeks ago  with juggling full time work, plus side consulting.
  • In the last 2 weeks, I made 1005, compared to 1800 in the 2 weeks prior. I’ve tried not to decrease what I can do, but the struggle is real! My full time work hours the past two weeks ate up an enormous amount of time. Blah.
Virtual Yard Sale:
  • We’ve been on a mission to get rid of any item we don’t really need, and use the extra cash to pay down debt.
  • Our sales were nowhere near as high as they were 2 weeks ago, but we did sell a combination of random items which brought in $899.
  • My husband is super motivated by the extra cash he can put down on his loans.
  • I’m secretly more motivated by getting rid of any extra clutter. I hate the feeling of being weighed down by stuff neither of us want or need.
AirBnb:
  • We’re still renting out a room for 1 night a week. We made a little over 400 in the last two weeks.
  • Hey, it’s not a TON of money, but that’s 800 more per month that we wouldn’t have otherwise!!

Overall, I think we did a pretty decent job in the last two weeks.

The Husband’s Extra Income Goals:

We’re both still trying to find more ways to bring in extra income.

The more we can increase our income while keeping expenses low, the faster we can reach our loan payoff goals AND our overall financial goals.

We’ve already both asked for and received raises at our full time jobs. The next step to raising our income is to increase what we bring in on the side.

My problem is that I’m really crunched for time now that I’m consulting on the side, working overtime, traveling more, AND trying to blog 2x a week.

Plus I volunteer on the weekends (which I love BUT it is definitely time consuming).

On top of that, I try to spend as much free time as possible with friends and family each week.

My husband doesn’t want to consult on the side like I do, because he sees how time consuming it can be.

He is looking, however, at other ideas to bring in some extra cash to pay down his loans faster.

Here are some side job ideas he’s been kicking around:

Uber Driving:
  • A few of my friends say driving for Uber is their ultimate side hustle, but in reality the average income is closer to $364 a month, after factoring in maintenance, gas and depreciation.
  • The husband is thinking of signing up, and thinks he could bring in an extra 400 a month just by doing the morning/evening rush hour pickups.
Door Dash / Uber Eats / Post Mates:
  • The average monthly income from Door Dash is $229, and about half that for Uber Eats.
  • My husband thinks he can pull in over $120 extra per month just by doing 1-2 deliveries a day, since it’s so popular in our area.
  • If he bikes, he’ll be able to get in an hour or so of exercise, and get paid to do it. I might even try this too :o)
Task Rabbit:
  • If you need extra cash, you can sign up at Task Rabbit to get paid for helping with random tasks, like moving and packing, furniture assembly, yard work, painting, and general handyman help.
  • All of that is right up my husband’s ally. He’s shooting for working 3-4 hours a week, and getting an extra 300 per month.  I’m a menace with this kind of work, so this is really all him!
Dog Sitting:
  • My husband and I both LOVE dogs. Even though our pup is a bottomless money pit, we still adore her to pieces.
  • We dog sit sometimes for friends, but we’re thinking about signing up on Rover for some extra cash.
  • I think we could bring in 240 extra per month doing this 2 times per week.
  • The extra money would be nice, plus we’ll get to socialize our dog a bit more.
Picture Apps:

In total, he thinks he could bring in an extra 1000 per month with the ideas above.

An extra 12k per year would help  enormously with wiping out his remaining student loans, and building up his emergency savings further.

I’m excited to see how he does!

If you’ve tried any of the ideas above, what was your experience? You don’t have to share how much you made, but interested to hear how it worked out.

If you have any other suggestions on side hustles, I would LOVE to hear those ideas too!

 

6 thoughts on “We paid off 62k of student loans in 6 weeks!!

    1. Hi,

      We’re in the Nevada area. 900 a month is pretty good for part time. Do you only drive at peak times?

      I read that the average hourly rate for Uber drivers around LA is between 19 and 23. I think it’s closer to 13 per hour where I live. That’s before expenses/depreciation!

  1. Congrats on your progress, Ava! I like the side job ideas your husband had. I’m on Rover and I make about 125 a week. It’s an easy way to make some extra cash, especially if you’re a dog person.

    1. An extra 6500 per year is pretty sweet!!

      I have a friend who dog sits all the time through Rover. She brings in between 30 – 50 per day, depending on whether the dog stays overnight at her house, or if she just checks in a few times per day.

      That’s a sweet chunk of extra cash to get for doing something that I consider fun anyways :o)

  2. Ava & hubby, keep up your spirits. This is all just TEMPORARY. You’re well on your way.

    If you’re crunched for time, just blog once a month to keep up your momentum. In my opinion, devoting time to family, side jobs, etc, is more important than updating blog all of the time…. just my two cents.

    Side jobs: try Affiliate Marketing. You can treat it full/part time. Have to be diligent with it to make $$$ but you both are already attacking the debt so you might as well attack it with a proven system. After you’re done with debt, it can serve as a wealth-building tool.

    God bless always! =)

    1. Awe, thank you so much Alex! :o)

      SO true that this is all temporary – once all of our loans are paid, all the extra work will have been worth it, many times over. I can’t wait!

      Blogging does take up a lot of time – but I think 2x a week is manageable. On really busy weeks, I’ll probably cut back to 1x per week.

      I honestly don’t know how people who blog every day do it!!! That level of commitment blows my mind.

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