Monthly Updates

Debt Payoff Report: Month 16

Wow, what a month!

I hope your Christmas was as fun as mine was, if not a little more relaxing.

My husband and I have four Christmases every Christmas day – his parents, my mom’s side of the family, my dad’s side, and our own. From early morning to night we are on the go, stuffing ourselves all the way, leading to our own exhaustion even more. I’m glad it’s over.

Thankfully, my families are pretty good about only purchasing gifts for children and not adults, making things a lot less stressful than they could be. We used our “Gift” sinking fund for the purchase of presents again this year, which also goes a long way in alleviating stress.

I took seven days off from work earlier in the month, mainly because I had vacation days to burn. I was called for jury duty during this time after seven weeks of not being called, but I was excused quickly due to the fact that my husband was to be called as a witness (perks of being an LEO wife).

Oh, and at the end of the month I took out my first credit card in over ten years. More on that here.

Now that the month is almost over, I’m happy to report that we paid $5,721.57 in mortgage principal in December! This is the largest number we’ve managed to hit since August, and it feels great.

  • $591.21: Principal portion of our standard monthly payment.
  • $2,814.34: Husband’s post-tax income during December.
  • $1,200.44: My Christmas bonus.
  • $1,115.58: The amount of a small, taxable investment we decided to cash out while switching our investments from American Funds to Schwab. More on this later.

December’s number brings us to an ending total of $51,750.75 paid in principal in 2017, our only full year of our journey.

We are now 16 full months in after starting on September 1, 2016.

The total amount after these 16 months? $66.263.36. Whew.

But, let me back up.

If you’re new to my blog (welcome!), here are the fast facts of our goal.


Pay off our mortgage in two years or less.

Start Amount

$77,135.72 after paying standard payments since purchasing the home in November 2013. The original mortgage was $90,000.


We decided to design our monthly budget using my income only, including the standard monthly mortgage payment. My husband’s income, as well as extra money that finds its way to us, is used as mortgage principal. We altered Dave Ramsey’s Baby Step 6 for the duration of this journey by lowering our retirement contributions to 4% and 5% just to continue receiving our employer matches.

We are definitely beating our original goal of being done by September 2018 and expect to be done by the end of next month.

[Edit: We did it; we’re 100% debt free! Check out my very last mortgage post here.]

March 2027 is when we would have reached our remaining balance of $10,872.36 if we had chosen to follow our 15 year term of the loan instead.

And for the very first time, we have more money in our checking and savings accounts at our local credit union than we owe on our mortgage. The realization that we can now feasibly pay off our home at any time brings the first bit of closure to the journey that I have obsessed over the past 16 months. It’s a strange mixture of feelings.

As wonderful as this month – and this year – was, I’m beyond ready to push forward into the new year. I cannot begin to explain what it’s like to be this close to completing this life-changing goal, and I’m looking forward our new life of building up instead of paying down.

If you’re on the verge of finishing a long-awaited goal, I’d love to hear about it. Let’s celebrate our accomplishments together! Let me know in the comments or on Instagram.

We are finally on the last leg of our mortgage free journey! Learn more!We have paid off over $66K in mortgage principal from September 2016 to December 2017 by slightly altering Dave Ramsey's Baby Step 6. Learn more.

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