Sunday, December 30, 2012

10 Reasons to Become Debt Free in 2013

If you already are debt free you might want to skip this post but if you aren't, read through these great reasons to get out of debt then head over to Dave Ramsey's website and follow his plan (I am a HUGE Dave Ramsey fan because following his plan, and watching his daily show for nearly two years straight, is what got us out of debt!).

  1. You won't have to work nearly as much (and it's corollary, you won't have to work at a job you hate or be afraid of losing your job since when you have no debt, you can easily support yourself with a part time or minimum wage job).
  2. You won't fall victim to scams.  There are a number of scams that use debt and credit to scam money from unsuspecting people (ie: something along the lines of "Mrs X, we did not receive your payment for your credit card bill last month and now we can sue you...unless you pay us with another credit card. What is that card number now?"  And scams like that really happen!  Shocking!).
  3. You will be better able to handle a crisis.  Whether it is taking time off of work to be with a sick loved one or throwing all of your income at buying a new ______ (stove, washing machine, etc), it is much simpler to handle a crisis when you aren't up to your eyeballs in debt.
  4. You won't leave your spouse buried in debt if you unexpectedly die.  I saw this happen more than a half dozen times when I was working in social services.  A person, usually a lady, would come in looking shell shocked due to her husband's death then she would drop a huge bag of mail--mostly bills--on my desk and ask what she should do since she had never worked before or earned very little money and there was so life insurance and nearly ever piece of mail was a bill.  It's sad.  And scary.  I would never want to leave the hubby like that.
  5. The sense of freedom at becoming debt-free is truly liberating.  It is really hard to describe the feeling of having NO DEBT.  You feel inordinately free and the first few months are kind of weird because you keep waiting for bills to come in and there aren't only, just lots of left over money that used to go to pay debt that is now just sitting there with no claim on it.
  6. You will officially be "weird".  According to Dave Ramsey, "normal" is broke and in debt while debt-free people are "weird".  I would much rather be weird.  And debt-free people tend to act a bit weird too--they don't have the newest cell phone (too expensive and not worth the hyper-inflated price), they pay cash for their cars, they live frugally even when they don't have to, they will go on a vacation...for a month or two.  Stuff like that.
  7. You will be able to actually afford stuff.  With cash.  Weird concept, I know, when it seems like every retailer on the planet has gone to extremes to help their customers "afford" stuff (in 1000 easy payments or so).  This makes it both better (you won't be paying interest or late fees or having your expensive stuff repossessed when you miss a payment) and worse (being a rampant consumer ceases being "fun" when you understand how much you have to work to afford each item you buy so you become super careful with how you spend your money). 
  8. Your stress level will ratchet down considerably.  For most people, their stress level directly correlates to their debt level.  When you are in debt, your credit cards are maxed out, you are paying interest fees/over limit fees/late fees, you can't call in sick to work because you can't afford to not get paid for that day, and you have three financial crisis hit in the same month, life sucks and you are stressed.  When you have no debt, you may still stress a bit about money (mostly about how you will earn the money to pay cash for your next big purchase) but it is not nearly as debilitating as when you are in debt.
  9. At the end of 2013 you will thank yourself for being so wise at the beginning of the year and also thank yourself for digging yourself out of debt so you can start the next new year DEBT FREE!
  10. You will set an example for others.  Maybe.  People in debt don't often want to hear others preach about becoming debt free because it sounds good in theory but it is a whole lot of hard work which is about where the enthusiasm for becoming debt-free stops.  And then you just sound like a religious zealot.  So while setting an example for others, remember to be subtle and only offer advice as it is requested.  Or you can just blog about it...and blog...and blog...and blog.
So here's to a debt-free 2013!  There is no better time to get out of debt than NOW (and yes, I'm taling to myself as well.  I absolutely hate having any debt and even though our house mortgage is considered a "good debt" it still is a debt and I want to get is paid off ASAP).


  1. My husband and I are set to become debt free in 2013 and we are so excited. We have been debt free except our mortgage for almost 2 years and in 2013 we are even paying that off. It is so exciting.
    Your right - we are seen as weird because we are have a very simple lifestyle but we take one or two vacations every year.

    1. Wow that would be amazing if you can get your house paid off this year! Best of luck!

  2. Our goal is to be totally debt free by the end of 2013. We have a plan we just have to work it

    1. I'm sure you will reach your goal--you have been working hard over the past year so just keep the momentum going!

  3. Working on it! Every time we get close, something comes up to set us back, but it's still our goal.

    1. At least you are moving in the right direction and I still think I will see you on Antiques Roadshow with a flea market find that turns out to be worth thousands and thousands of dollars!