This post was partially inspired by my dear friend, who asked recently whether we had any home reno projects planned. She knows we paid off our house two years ago, but as of yet, there aren’t a lot of outward signs that we are living any differently or “living like no one else” as Dave Ramsey would say. There’s no BMW in the driveway, and, sadly, no granite countertops either.
I pondered our debt-free lifestyle myself over New Year’s as our family discussed travel plans for the summer. Should we take a dream vacation out West? Could we afford it? The “brat” part of my brain said, “You have NO payments, so book the vacation and I’ll take a day at the spa, too, while you’re at it!”
I came to the realization that in the first few years after becoming debt-free, “living like no one else” partially means saving like no one else. If you really embrace the idea that you are going to be debt-free for life, you have now turned into your own bank. Want a new car? The money is coming from your own accounts, not GMAC Financing. Need a roof? That’s coming our of your short-term savings, not a home equity loan. Braces? Kitchen reno? You get the idea.
It’s kind of daunting.
The up side, though, is huge. When you set your monthly budget, you are completely free to allocate your money however you see fit. You don’t have a $400.00 payment to set aside for Nissan, or a $1000 payment to your mortgage company. You alone determine your goals and how to fund them. A cherry on the top…. there is more money to work with because you aren’t paying interest to borrow someone else’s money!
We said yes to the vacation. The spa and the granite countertops will have to wait.
What are your thoughts on living and saving like no one else?