Hey! My debt snowball melted

By glblguy

Our debt snowball melted. I’m not exactly sure when it happened, but I do know why. I guess it started melting around the the time we began looking for a new home and placing ours on the market. Our finances are in a bit of chaos right. A controlled chaos mind you, but chaos none the less.

What melted our debt snowball

A number of things have very quickly melted our debt snowball:

  • Our old home not selling. This caused us to take on not only two mortgage payments, but dual expenses as well.   Including 2 power bills and dual property taxes. Property taxes on our old home are due this month.
  • Repairs on our old home. In order to get our home in sellable condition, we had to make about $20,000 in repairs. This included repainting the interior and exterior, having the chimney rebuilt, new carpet, and a number of other repairs. We ended up using a home equity line to pay for most of this, but I minimized that to the extent I could.
  • Moving. While not a huge expense, we did pay someone to move us. We also had to buy boxes and packing supplies and rent a U-Haul trailer. A number of other little expenses crop up as well when you move and we had to cover those.
  • Murphy. As Dave Ramsey likes to say, Murphy has moved in a few times as well. I recently broke my finger which has caused us to incur some unplanned medical expenses. I’ve had to drive back to the city we lived in every week and will continue to do so until the end of December, another unexpected expense. To top things off, my wife was in a minor accident on Monday that damaged her vehicle, so we’ll need to get that fixed, along with a few repairs on both of our vehicles.
  • Christmas. Of course the holiday season is here as well, and even though we have a Christmas fund, there are always little extra expenses that come up such as: higher grocery expenses, replacing lights an decorations as needed, Christmas cards, etc., etc.

I’m sure I’m missing a few things as well. Financially, the last few months have just been crazy. Now with that said, we’ve stayed mostly in budget and where we haven’t, our emergency fund was used. We’ve even been able to refund it every case. I just haven’t been able to get caught up enough to get that debt snowball started again.

Right after the first of the year though, it’s restarting. I’ll start with a small one, and once we either get our old house sold our rented, I’ll add that in as well.

Don’t be discouraged

Why am I telling you all of this? Many people start the debt pay-off process and due to life situations have to slowdown or stop altogether for a while. That’s what has happened to us. It’s perfectly normal and doesn’t mean I am no longer on my path to be debt free, it just means my plans have been slowed a little. A few bumps in the road if you will.

When these bumps happen in your life, don’t get discouraged, just adjust your spending and your budget. Stay focused on the long term goal, and get back to it as soon as you are able. That is what I’m doing.

Life isn’t perfect, we aren’t perfect, and neither is your debt snowball. Has your debt snowball melted? Just make another once it snows again.

Photo by: akeg

12 Responses (including trackbacks) to “Hey! My debt snowball melted”

  1. tiffanie Says:

    it’s easy to say you won’t get discouraged and not always as easy to live up to it…that’s how it was for me. my momentum slowed down and i got frustrated and had a few bad months. hopefully this month is better!

  2. Miranda Says:

    The important thing is, that, once all this craziness ends, you get back on track — I’ve no doubt you will. Sorry to hear about your issues, and best of luck. The nice thing about the debt snowball is that you can take a break if you need to in order to straighten things out.

  3. Frugal Dad Says:

    I’m in a holding pattern myself after a series of family illnesses and a prolonged hospital stay for my mother (we are helping her a bit during this rough patch). I look forward to getting back on the debt snowball because watching those balances fall has been a lot of fun!

  4. Jen @ Frugal Right Here, Right Now Says:

    I loved your title for this post! It gave me a chuckle. I have felt this way several times this year and just get frustrated. I think I should be back on track with my own snowball by March. Keep looking forward and Good luck.

  5. Gina Says:

    Good analogy! Hopefully my “Murphy” and your “Murphy” will get together and take a LONG ski trip to the Swiss Alps or something. The silver lining is that we didn’t get deeper into debt when the Murphys showed up.

  6. GrannyAnnie Says:

    I am SOOO glad to see this post! I reckon we’re all in this together. I had SUCH a great snowball going earlier in the year, and life came along and the best laid plans, well, kinda laid down. I’ve still been paying down debt, but much slower than I had planned. Being the good perfectionist that I am, I’ve been frustrated and feeling guilty and all that other trash. I feel a whole lot better after reading this. This post, frankly, is one reason I read these blogs – looking for similar problems and how you guys handle them. I think God communicates with us through others, and I just want to say, “Okay God, I’m listening. Thanks!”

  7. MattK Says:

    Hang in there, Larry! It sounds like you’ve been through some tough times lately, but that melting snowball can easily freeze up again and start rolling down the hill. I pray that God brings a buyer to your home this month.

  8. Blake Says:

    As Henry Ford would say, “Obstacles are those frightful things you see when you take your eyes off the road”. Doesn’t look like you’ve lost sight of where you want to be. :D

  9. Joshua @ Accountable Living Says:

    What we great in this post for me was that you (a) admit to the issues going on and (b) responded positively. Where many people tend to take setbacks as a reason to go out and spend even more money, you instead point to the fact that goals are still there and needing to be worked towards.

    Great post.

  10. The Debt Helper Says:

    I am very much of the view that there are seasons for everything and sometimes you have to dip into your savings to deal with immediate circumstances but the key aspect is that you have a long term committment to building it back up again. I’m sad to hear that your old home is not selling as it looks so beautiful on your previous pictures, hope this changes in the new year