Why Paying Off Debt is Important + Attainable – EP 138

In case we all need a bit more motivation and encouragement to keep working towards our debt-free goals we’re reminding ourselves of the top reasons to get out of debt and looking at some compelling statistics to help us realize this is possible!


  • Debt-Freedom Roadmap– It’s not too early to start thinking about your 2021 financial goals especially if one of those goals is debt freedom! Over at Modern Frugality I have created a Debt Freedom Roadmap to help you see where you’re at on the road to debt and financial freedom, make sure you’ve hit all your major landmarks, and what various detours might look like. If you want a little more clarity about the financial road ahead visit modernfrugality.com/debtfree to get your free roadmap.
  • ME telling you all about my dear friend Jenna Ball – jenna has been a friend of mine since the 10th grade and like any good and refined thing she has only gotten better and cooler over the decades! she is a woman of class, character, competence, care, kindness, generosity, intelligence, and humor! You just need to know this because recently I used an example about boundaries from an experience in our friendship years ago. I never mentioned her name – but she knew it was about her. And this is certainly not the thing to know about her! She doesn’t shrink back from anything – including calling me out on using her as example on a recent episode about setting boundaries. 

Notable Notes:

What the Internet has to say:

This article from Money Crashers lists out some compelling reasons to get out of debt ASAP!

What Jen + Jill have to say:

  • 1. More free income
  • 3. Less risk – “you’re always just one financial blow away from disaster”
  • 4. Better credit score
  • 5. Better job prospects (or at least more rewarding!) – “You feel a lot more motivated to work harder when you get to keep the money you make, rather than spending it all on debt payments. And if you’ve been stuck in a job you hate because you needed the money to pay those credit card bills, paying off the debt frees you to look for a new job that’s more rewarding.”
  • 6. Less stress
  • 10. Fewer illnesses – ‘people with high levels of debt-related stress are more than three times as likely to suffer from ulcers and other digestive problems as people with lower debt stress.’
  • 14. Better relationship

More from the Internet:

This information from Debt.com provides us with some personal finance stats on the average American household; some of which may inspire us to get rid of our debt for good!

More from Jen + Jill:

  • These stats move us to believe that getting out of debt is more attainable than we may think
    • “In 2016 the average household earned $74,664. Average expenditures were $57,311, leaving $17,353 in free cash flow” Median is $68,000.”
    • “A Gallup poll found only about 1/3 of Americans (32%) maintain a household budget.”
    • “Only 30% of Americans have a long-term financial plan that includes savings and investment goals
    • You’re most likely to budget if you make at least $75,000 per year
    • The average American spends less than 4.5 hours a year with scheduled time on their calendar for finances, according to Calendar.com.”
    • A separate 2017 survey by Career Builder found more than three-fourths of U.S. workers they surveyed struggled to make ends meet.
    • “Americans spend $1,048 on holiday decorations, food, gifts, and shipping costs.”
    • low income is not always to blame for financial hardship. Only 1 in 5 people (20%) facing financial hardship fall below the poverty line and make less than $40,000 per year

BILL OF THE WEEK – Thank you Samara from Rhode Island for sharing your bill about family members named Bill

If you want to submit your bill of the week visit frugalfriendspodcast.com/bill to leave us a bill

This bill is sponsored by Busuu – a language learning app that teaches 12 of the world’s most popular languages including Spanish, French, and Italian. You can practice your new skills immediately with native speakers of the language you’re learning and you can help people learn English! Start learning with Busuu by visiting busuu.com and use code FRUGAL for 30% off Busuu Premium

Lightning Round

Turning points: why paying off debt was important to you and when you realized it was possible to pay it off.

  • Jen–  My debt was a mental and emotional burden. It was a source of depression. So much so that I compartmentalized it and hid from it. So it didn’t become important to me until it was important to my fiance.
  • Jill- don’t think there has been a time I ever felt comfortable ‘owing’ people something. BUT seeing the bill for the first time – reality struckKnew I would pay it off and just thought it would take me FOREVER!! It was overwhelming to me to graduate college and realize the amount of money I owed, the interest that would be collected, and the wage I was making (literally made me sick to my stomach!)
  • Jen- I didn’t realize it was possible until we put everything on the table and really inspected the numbers.
  • Jill- As my wage increased it became more and more apparent that I could pay off debt quicker than I realized


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Thanks for listening! See you next week!

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