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Eliminate Debt: The Ultimate in Lazy Finances

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Lazy Man and I disagree on the whole debt idea. This surprises me, since as I have eliminated all but one debt (and that last one will go away very soon) I have discovered that debt elimination is the ultimate in lazy financial management.

When I started with the Dave Ramsey debt elimination plan back in January of 2007, we had two vehicle notes (payments for non-Southerners), one credit union loan, and three credit cards. Nothing unmanageable, right? Especially since we got onto a real working budget in January.

The first to die was the car note as I made a double payment to pay it off completely in January. The next dominoes to fall were the credit union loan and the Chase MasterCard in February. It was a bit more work to stomp out the American Express in June thanks to their annoying "double cycle billing" practice. Then I looked up in July and noticed I could pay off the Star Card (a military credit card for the AAFES PX/BX) with one killer payment.

It actually wasn't until August that I began to realize just how much easier it was to make the monthly budget and pay the bills when there were FIVE less bills to pay! Fewer payments to schedule. Fewer due dates to bother with. Fewer lines on the budget board (yes I use the high-tech dry erase board to do my budget LOL). Fewer things to subtract from the income side of the equation. I've become a very lazy budgeteer!

Of course my goal is to become the MOST lazy budgeteer by only having utilities and insurance and investments in my monthly budget someday soon...once the truck is sold and the mortgage is paid off I will be there, at which point making up the budget should take all of five minutes each month. That will leave me more time to do fun stuff ... like actually learning more Spanish than just the Mexican cuss words I picked up when I worked in the factory.

[Editor's note: You'd have a hard time being a lazier budgeteer than me. I have no budget at all. I just ask myself if I need to buy the new crap, and most of the time the answer is no. The other key is that I had a great income in the past. On a different note, it would seem to me that with online banking the number of bills largely becomes irrelevant.]

Posted on November 15, 2007.

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9 Responses to “Eliminate Debt: The Ultimate in Lazy Finances”

  1. pfodyssey says:

    The flavors of budgeting are as varied as the personalities who do them. It seems to me that the level of budgeting required really depends on the individual (and their own financial situation). For example, if you are by default pretty undisciplined about your finances without a budget and / or income vs expenses are pretty tight, you may need one that is more details and updated / monitored on a more frequent basis.

    Conversely, if you are disciplined and / or easily managing your expenses, then the need may be less. Of course, I only say may because some people love budgets (lot of financial freaks out there! heh.)

    For myself, I have a simple spreadsheet that shows my monthly take-home (est) with offsets for fixed expenses and variable expenses (very rough estimate for the variable). I probably take a look at it once a year or so…maybe more if my networth doesn’t seem to be moving in the right direction and I’m wondering where the heck all the money is going!

  2. I keep a good track on the money coming in and out, but when it comes to spending, I’ve gotten pretty lazy. I take $400 out in cash at the beginning of the month, put it in an envelope, and just use that to pay for gasoline, groceries, going out to eat, and oher every day expenses. After the money in the envelope is gone (it usually never is), then I’m done spending money for the month.

  3. lulu says:

    I am a lazy(ish) budgeter myself. I have put everything that can go on autopay through my online accounts so I do not have to deal with them. I set up my own debt reduction plan and I have eliminated one loan amount.

    It really does feel good to see that one debt go to zero and it just makes you have more hope that you can get the others down too, it just takes some time.

  4. Joseph Sangl says:

    Dave Ramsey is the MAN! He is THE REASON that my bride and I embarked on our journey to become debt-free. It took us 14 months! I have paid cash for a car, and have incurred no debt since becoming debt-free nearly four years ago!

  5. We also went through the Dave Ramsey plan. The only problem I had was the tools were not the best. That is when I met Joseph Sangl. His budgeting tools are top of the line and they are all free at his website. We were debt free by the time I met Joe but his tools have made it much easier four us to keep up with our budget.

  6. Moneymonk says:

    It’s nothing wrong with being lazy, it shows that you use your brain more. I also wants to get to the point in which my budget will take 5 minutes to do

  7. My wife and I have come up with a plan that works for us. I pay all of the expenses, mostly all automatic, and she uses her salary for saving and debt repayment. If all goes well she will be saving all of her salary in just 7 months

  8. Minimum Wage says:

    If your debt is twice your annual income, how long would it take to get out of debt?

  9. I’m an avid follower with lazy man and budgeting.

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