Writing Wrap Up + Our Pledge + $260,000 In Loans

Hey yo! It’s writing wrap up time. Enjoy a bunch of awesome personal finance articles linked below and yes, the student loan balance listed in the title is for real. Details below!

Life Update: Our Pledge

The hubs and I have decided that we will go to the pool and the beach at least once each every week until we leave Grenada. We know that this semester will get crazy, but since our apartment complex has a pool, and we’re a five minute walk from the beach, we have absolutely no excuses. I’m going to stay accountable by posting pictures here and on Instagram with hashtag #ourpledge. Want to join me by pledging to do something just for you? Here’s our pool pic from yesterday. We have yet to go to the beach this week, but we’ll be fixing that this weekend!

our pledge

Student Loan Update

I haven’t done a student loan update in a while, so here goes nothing.

The Good News: I paid over $2,000 towards my students loans in the past two months just using my side hustle income.

The Bad News: We’re adding more to the loan totals each semester with the hubs’ tuition, but that’s what happens when you decide to go to med school. :) Here are the new totals:

Cat’s Loans

Bachelors & Masters Degree Consolidated Loan: $34,635.46

The Hubs’ Loans

Bachelors Degree: $3,895.80

Masters Degree: $65,070.13

Medical School So Far: $155,928.70

Total Cost For Our Brains So Far:

$259,530.09 or if you want to look at this this way, it’s a really fancy invisible house.

All loans have over a 6% interest rate with the exception of the hubs’ undergrad loan, which is subsidized. Remember when we had subsidized loans back in the good ol’ days?

So, there’s really not much else to say except that we’re surprisingly calm about all of this. We both work hard, and we’re going to pay his loans back as soon as the hubs gets through school and actually starts practicing medicine. We’re trying to pay mine back over the next 2-3 years, depending on how this whole blogging full time thing goes. :)

Until then, I have every intention of living my life, enjoying Grenada, taking a vacation one of these days, and continuing to save and invest along the way. The hubs actually just got back from a really cool medical study abroad experience that I’ll tell you about next week, and I was beyond happy to pay for it with my side hustle income. So, I know not all financial bloggers would agree with doing a bit of traveling while we’re in this much debt, but that’s just how we roll. I’ll explain more next week. The hubs might even stop in and write about it himself. :)

Jammin’ Posts I Wrote For Others

A Unique Strategy for Pricing Your Services as a Freelancer

4 Ways To Get Great Art For Your Home Without Breaking the Bank

Posts I Thought Were So Cool

Greg was kind enough to ask me to contribute to a post, which asked if doctors make too much money. You get to read about my experience being married to someone during the first two years of med school, and his experience dating and eventually marrying someone starting with the 4th year of med school. Good stuff!

Holly is cutting costs left and right.

It’s no surprise, but Michelle killed it in the extra income department.~12k! Amazing!

Kathleen stayed in a bunch of places using AirBnB. Apparently there was some nudity involved…

Congrats to Nick for 6 months of blogging. You’re doing a fabulous job, and I appreciate all your comments on BB! :)

I can’t believe J$ didn’t get more for that sweet pram!

Catherine has a friend that she tries to help with budgeting, but her friend never listens. I can relate to this.

You know I love a post when I forward it along to the hubs: Let Your Kids Suffer. They’ll Be Better Off.

Carnivals Yo!

Thanks to the following bloggers who included me in their carnivals last week:
FITnancials, Midlife Finance, Hurricanes, Panties, One Cent at a Time, Your PF Pro, & Tortoise Banker

Connect

Don’t forget to enter our awesome $900 giveaway! You can also find me lurking here:

Have a great weekend, everyone! Are you pledging to do something nice for yourself over the next few months? Did our student loan totals make you feel better about yours? ;)

About Catherine Alford

Catherine Alford aka "Cat" is a personal finance freelance writer who currently lives in the Caribbean with her husband and spoiled pup, Julep. To learn more about her writing services, please visit her Hire Me page or e-mail her at Cat[at]BudgetBlonde[dot]com. Follow her on Google + to get all the latest updates.

Lovely comments:

  1. Thanks so much for the mention. I hope you guys have an awesome weekend and you better get to that beach!

  2. Thanks for the mention! I don’t think there’s anything wrong with traveling when you have debt. As long as you have a good plan for it all!

  3. Pfft, travel = absolutely yes. If you waited to do fun things until your loans were paid off, you’d miss out for years!

  4. Ohh the invisible house, that’s what I call my husband’s PT loans. He gets an “extra” paycheck this month, so I am excited to but down an extra $2000 :)

  5. I have NO worries about the Hub’s ability to pay back those medical school loans.

    I would call that “good” debt, if there’s such a thing.

  6. When we were in San Diego we were walking distance from the beach and it was funny how infrequently we went. Visitors from out of town would want to go every day and we’d always say, “Huh, you know it’s really fun here, and free…we should go more.”

    The debt amount is sufficiently large that I don’t think denying yourselves vacations or other rewards will actually help, and could possibly hurt. It’s a marathon, and sometimes you need to grab that cup of Gatorade or slice of banana.

  7. You are staying quite calm about those loans. I would be freaking out, but I know you have a lot of side income and plans to keep kicking debts ass, so keep it up Cat!

    Also, I like the new font. I can see it on all of my browsers. Glad you got it worked out.

  8. Thanks so much for the mention Cat!

  9. I probably need the opposite goal which is to stay away from the beach more. LOL! Naw you’d have to take me kicking and screaming. :) I’m glad you’re not freaking out about your loans!

  10. Honestly, the debt is a long-term investment. While it’s hard to envision how it all works out in the end, med school is well worth-it from what I know and from the Doctors I know. It also is personally rewarding and honestly I second-guess myself whether I should have pursued it. Oh well : )

    I like your pledge to do one thing a week for yourself. I might have to join you…just need to think of something. I could do the whole instagram thing too since I need more to post on there.

    Hope you have a great weekend!

  11. Almost forgot to say – traveling while in debt isn’t a bad thing! At least that’s my opinion, especially if you are young.

    • Thanks for the support as always DC :) I think you would have made a great doctor but I also think you’re really good at what you’re doing now and will probably be happier and just as well off financially :) And yes please join in on instagram. :)

  12. Going to beach once a week sounds like a good pledge to me! We try to make it their once a week during the summer months too. I’m glad you’re not freaking out over your student loans. Yes, they are hefty but my impression is neither you or your husband regret the education you received/are receiving and will probably pay it off far faster than most would. I don’t have a problem with you guys taking some vacations because it sounds like you’re planing and saving for them, not creating more debt on a whim. :) Have a great weekend!

  13. I don’t know what your husband’s plans are for employment, but he may be interested in the 10 Public Service Student Loan Forgiveness if all those are federal. Either way, they will get paid off! :)

  14. Thanks for the mention! You’re right, it certainly is a second mortgage. I’m sure we can keep each other honest in paying them back in the next few years!

  15. It’s good to know (although sad) that others are dealing with student loan debt. Also, med school should be profitable in the long run, it’s probably just scary right now. Sounds like you are having fun and enjoying life, which is exactly what you should be doing!

  16. I want the beach assignment too. I have several friends who are doctors and they put in thousands of hours to learn how to care for me and others well. You and your husband are well equipped to focus on the loan repayments once your husband is done and will have a good “shovel” to pay the loans back!

  17. That pool looks amazing! At least once per week seems like a must before you leave that paradise. And don’t worry about the loans – I think that especially in this case they should be considered “spend money to make money”. And probably really soon that invisible house will become a real one!

  18. That’s one heck of an invisible house but it will all be worth it in the end. Have a great weekend mate. CBB

  19. That pool looks awesome! Is that like one of those Singapore pools where the edge of the pool goes right off the side of the building?

  20. Thanks for sharing your journey! I’m fairly new around here so this may be covered elsewhere, but I’d be interested in hearing your husband’s perspective on the loans and rapid payoff. Did y’all talk about these ideas before entering med school (thus entering the stage of life with a “means to an end” mentality regarding the loans)? I have several friends in med school and it makes me want to cry for them when they talk about the amount of debt they’re incurring! Keep working hard! You’re doing great! :)

    • Hey Ashley! I’m so glad you’re a new reader, and I hope you stick around! :) As far as his perspective on the loans, we did talk a lot about them before going to med school. We sat down together and pulled up average doctor salaries for the lowest paying specialties. Then we calculated out if we’d actually be able to pay it back and enjoy our lives somewhat. Even though the loans are hefty, we really think that with a lot of dedication, we can pay it back in 5 years or less. It’s definitely a means to an end, but it’s his dream, and since we’re not independently wealthy, we have to borrow money to get him there! Thanks so much for all the encouragement!

  21. No excuses! I have lived in really cool places like Barcelona and Morocco and sometimes wished I had enjoyed them even more, you are on site, and who knows when you’ll go back!

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