5 steps a couple took to pay off $25,000 in student loans in 5 months
- Kelan and Brittany Kline graduated with a combined $40,000 in student loan debt.
- By 2018, they had $25,000 left over and together they decided to focus on paying it back.
- They cut their expenses drastically and made as much money as possible to pay off the debt.
- Read more stories from Personal Finance Insider.
Student debt is crippling America. The sum Student loan debt in the USA is currently floating at a an incredible $1.7 trillionand the Median amount of outstanding student debt for an individual is between $20,000 and $25,000. For this reason, unfortunately, it’s no surprise that people are paying off their debts well into their 60s and beyond.
But what if you could Break up your debt earlier than later? Kelan Kline and his wife Brittany Kline succeeded. After graduating from college, the couple was saddled with a total of $40,000 in college debt. While they did what they could during college to keep their student debt to a minimum, such as:
This is how they managed to pay off $25,000 in student debt in just five months.
1. You have agreed as a couple
By 2018, the couple had just over $25,000 of their initial $40,000 in student loans left over. By the time they had expanded their blog, The smart couple, which started as a side hustle, has become a lucrative venture. Kelan had left a county jail job he hated to work full-time for the blog.
They sat down at the dining table and talked about Brittany’s dream of quitting her job to work in the shop. “I knew that to do that, we had to get out of debt and pay off the remaining $25,000 in debt that we owed,” says Kelan. “Brittany was very against paying it off so aggressively.”
So they threw things out. “It was a difficult conversation, but one that completely changed our lives,” says Kelan, who is 31. “We aligned our goals and dreams in life and that has allowed us to work as a team instead of playing tug-of-war against each other. But she trusted me and the dream we had created and the wheels started to move.”
2. They increased their income from their side business
In 2018, Klines’ blog, which shares tips and tricks for saving money and living frugally, hit its first $10,000 in monthly income. When their side business that morphed into a full-time venture hit the $10,000 mark, the Klines realized they could be more aggressive with their student loan payments and pay off the debt sooner rather than later.
This took a lot of hard work and time as it was only after nine straight months that the couple finally made their first $50 from their website. “We strongly believe that if you really want to be in complete control of your time and money, you have to start a small business,” says Kelan. “Owning your own business is the only fast track to financial freedom.”
3. They made paying off debt their priority
By naming debt settlement Since it was a top financial priority, the couple could use every free dollar towards their goal. Some months they paid $5,000 in student debt, other months they paid $11,000 in student debt. In the beginning, up to 90% of the income from her blog went directly to paying off her student loans.
“We made it our goal to get out of debt and we’re focused solely on getting there,” says Kelan. “We knew that a small temporary sacrifice would have an eternal effect on our entire lives.”
4. They cut spending
Determined to be debt-free, the Klines cut back on food, groceries, entertainment, and investments to devote more money to their goal. They cooked with friends on the weekends, cooked at home, and found the areas in their lives where they were wasting money.
In return, they could put up $500 to $1,000 of their monthly expenses to go directly towards their college debt. “Looking back, our quality of life hasn’t really changed while we’ve been aggressively paying off our debt,” says Kelan. “We just got creative and found cheap or free ways to have fun.”
5. They crowded aside
The Klines were quite familiar with side hustles, having taken odd jobs to earn extra money since college. They sold makeup through Avon Dropshipping on Amazon, and flipped items on eBay. Each month, this earned them an additional $100 to $200.
“In addition to launching our personal finance blog and turning it into a thriving online business, side-hustling has really given us the opportunity to drastically increase our income in a very short period of time,” says Kelan. “Owning a business gives you the opportunity to earn passive income and free yourself from always trading your time for money.”
For those who want to get to student loan payments quickly, Kelan suggests getting on the same page as your spouse first. Figure out what you ultimately want to achieve and break it down into smaller goals.
“You can’t both go in different directions and do your own thing when it comes to your finances,” says Kelan. “Sit down, talk about what works and what doesn’t, settle on a realistic budget that you both agree on, talk about long-term goals and start creating your dream life together.”