I am a money moron. I REALLY am. I kid you not. Hear me out.
It started when I was applying for college.
Apparently I decided during my junior/senior years that I was going to get into MASSIVE student loan debt by attending an out of state 4 year Big 10 university.
Apply for scholarships? Maybe just a few because it took SO much of my free time. I was a champion of senioritis.
$40,000 per year for tuition and dorm? Sure just fill out the FAFSA form and take out a boatload of loans.
Work during school to get out of the monstrous soon to come student loan debt? No thanks. Did I get straight A’s because I got to focus on school? Not even close. Trust me.
Get a credit card to start buying sports collectibles without an exit strategy in mind? Heck yes.
Use student loans that I had left over and buy more food than the allotted dorm cafeteria allowance and go out more? Sign me up.
I did not do one thing right financially. I did not want to bother my parents about this because they were going through struggles themselves. Like parents, like son.
Oh it gets better….
I took a year off school to work. I was actually making a really good hourly wage for a college student. Hey I have money so I should start paying off the student loan debt.
Here comes the money moron. I am going to use that hard earned cash to buy more sports collectibles (that I actually have to this day…Albert Pujols autographed rookie cards anyone?) instead of paying off the student loan debt.
But wait there is more….
I graduated and now I have racked tons and tons of debt. It was so much I lost track of how much I owed.
Then the downward financial ruin began. 500 credit score for the win!
I leased a new car (my first car) and probably got ripped off on the money factor aka APR.
I got overwhelmed with all the bills I had to pay so I started missing payments with the exception of my car.
I went into default on all my loans except my lease.
By this time it was the recession. What did I do?
You guessed it, money moron at it again. I turned in my old leased car and leased an extremely expensive Infiniti G37 with terrible credit (incredibly high money factor/APR) because I was now getting into default status.
I also started buying luxury designer label clothing.
I ignored emails, phone calls, and voice mails. It was so much that I literally changed numbers and wireless providers. I did not realize at the time that they could track me down anyway.
Fast forward 10 years and some of those defaulted private loans ended up going away.
I was threatened with wage garnishment for the government student loans.
Then I slowly started getting my act together because of that threat.
My credit card debt always ended up getting paid in full. In 2014 my student loans were at $80,000.
My credit score had creeped up to the low-mid 700’s.
In April 2018 I started going on a podcast and audiobook binge listening and learning about investing and general business (leadership, people management, critical thinking). Those listening sessions really motivated me.
As of May 2018 my student loans are $36,000. Still no family to support. Still no kids. A much better job than when I was a fresh grad.
You thought this post about “hey, I am debt free, let me share my story”….nope. Sorry to disappoint.
I still have a load of student loan debt.
My goal is to pay off the entire $36,000 within 10 months.
Welcome to the journey of the money moron.