This ” You’re Debt Free, What’s Next? ” is a guest post of mine that's published over at Apathy Ends.
My wife and I have been free from debt since the start of this year. A couple of years ago, I owed at least $70K and didn't think I would be able to get out of this financial dilemma. Fortunately, I did. It took me and my wife 2 and a half years to pay off my debt.
It’s easy to assume that once you're debt free, you will always be free from debt. The truth is some people will go back to where they were before. I know people who finally became debt free just to find themselves in the same situation years later.
For me, becoming debt free is not the same as continuously maintaining a debt free life. My wife and I were really happy when we made the final debt payment. We knew our lives would never be the same. We promised that we would never again go back to our old situation. So far, we are fulfilling that promise.
You’re Debt Free, What’s Next?
A lot of people have come to us and ask us what we have been doing to ensure we keep ourselves free from debt. Though there is no standard way of keeping oneself free from debt, here are some ways my wife and I apply to ensure we keep our promise fulfilled.
Make payments as if you still had debts
Once you are done with paying your debt off, what do you do next? Do you put your money in the bank, invest it in the market, or something else? You should always remember once you make your last payment, you'll have more extra money you can use for something else.
You should continue making payments as if you still owe creditors some money. Pay yourself by placing the money, which would've gone to your debt, towards investments, savings, or something else.
You should also consider saving for your future and your family by funding your Individual Retirement Accounts (IRAs), 401(K), and college funds. If you missed putting money in your emergency funds because your main focused was paying off your debts, then, this is the best time to do it.
Read more of my guest post at Apathy Ends.