Stick to your budget


Five and a half years ago, we made a huge family and lifestyle decision to cut up all of our credit cards (paid off every month) and use a cash only system.

Budgeting was something we thought we were doing well before that point, but until we actually put pencil to paper, we found out we weren’t. We were marching our  way to saving up our emergency fund and eventually becoming debt free! One of the very first things we did was assess all of our outgoing money and how we could shave some off of our expenses.

  • Changed banks to make sure we weren’t paying fees for our accounts (a local credit union was our winner)
  • Called our internet/cable company and made sure we were signed up for the best promotion and pricing. (We actually only have local channels through cable because it’s cheaper to have internet + cable than just internet.
  • Sold off any investments we had to pay off our second mortgage.
  • Refinanced our first mortgage with a better interest rate and faster pay off.
  • Called our car and homeowners insurance to check our policies and make sure we had all of our eligible discounts.
  • Called our cellular provider to make sure we had the best plan possible (at the time, we were on a contract.)

And, in less than a year, we were debt free (which is crazy!!!)

Looking back, there are definitely things we could have done differently. We could have saved a lot more green over the last four years with a different cell phone provider.


I’ve shared my tips for tightening our budget with you. I’d love to hear yours!

Similar Posts


  1. That would be ideal for a tween who wants a phone too, wouldn’t it? I’m glad that’s a few years away! Good to know.

    1. Yes, definitely. I mean, it was only $60 for the phone and “Activation.” Then, it’s a little less than $30/month. And they even have just unlimited talk and text, which I imagine is what I would start a tween/teen with if we were at that point.

  2. I didn’t know you went debt free so fast!! We only have a little debt (outside of our mortgage) and it’s short term! We pay off credit cards every month, and reap the rewards for date nights… when we can take them!

    1. We were lucky that we had invested money early on, so we cashed it in and paid off most of it. Then, we did a debt snowball for the rest. We were also good to not have a ton of debt….our student loans were the next highest and I got a good chunk written off when I taught, so that helped.

      We decided to follow along even with the credit cards (despite the rewards) because we found that we would spend more money using them versus cash, so we stick to it!

  3. Wow – great job on going debt free. That’s a big accomplishment. Also, I hate being locked into a contract for anything, let alone cell service. I can’t wait until my contract is up!

  4. Leigh Anne Borders says:

    We have had one of these and are quite pleased with it! We are also trying to go debt free.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *