We are so excited to share our second Client Success Story! Remember reading how Patricia Met Her Goal? Well, today we’re talking about how Andrea @abutler930 paid off her entire credit card bill before a high interest rate kicked in!
Client Goal: Pay off credit card balance before interest rate spiked to 23% in October
Client Start Date: April 1, 2016
Client Target Date: By end of October 2016
Client Credit Card Balance at Start: $3,087
Client Credit Card Balance at End: $0
Client Credit Card Pay Off Date: 10/5/2016
Andrea's Story (as told by the CGS Financial Consultant):
Andrea reached out to City Girl Savings in March to get a consultation scheduled. When we talked during her consultation, Andrea explained that she didn’t make too much money and often lived paycheck to paycheck. After her bills and expenses were paid, she had very little for going out and socializing. She viewed a budget as a “negative” things that would force her to penny pinch and never see her friends. I explained to Andrea that a budget is quite the opposite. A budget will allow her to see where her money is really going and what steps can be taken to get to a better place. She had a credit card balance of $3,087 that would incur a 23% interest rate in October.
Not long after Andrea got her consultation, she completed the Budget Process and I got to work! I found that with her current spending, she only had $180 left over each month. This was certainly a great start, but I discovered Andrea was spending $300 each month on eating out and buying lunch at work, as well as $325 each month on shopping, cosmetics and grooming. These areas were certainly cut back (although not cut completely), and we had a firm plan in place to ensure Andrea’s goal of paying off her credit card would be accomplished in time. Our plan was to meet every Thursday to see how her spending was and ensure she was on track.
Andrea struggled with the budget at first, however as the months went on, her mindset changed. Andrea would make comments like “Why should I spend $100+ on new shoes this season when they will be worn down and unwearable for next season? I can get trendy shoes for much less and not feel bad about not wearing them”. She also made a big decision to move back in with her parents. While they required to her to pay some money for rent, Andrea was now able to save more and put more towards her card. Savings remained a high priority for Andrea, even with the credit card balance. She felt better knowing some money was being put away, even if it meant taking a little longer to pay off her credit card.
Andrea was still able to enjoy the things she loved to do, including taking two trips. The first trip she spent more than she planned, with an “I’ll figure it out later” mindset. When she returned from her trip, she realized that wasn’t the best mindset to have. She had to recoup what she spent and pay more towards her card (since she used it during the trip). On the second trip, she budgeted for everything ahead of time. She knew the value of planning ahead so she wouldn’t be scrambling in the end.
Today, Andrea made the final payment on her credit card bill! Now, her goal is to boost savings and start investing. Andrea made the necessary sacrifices to reach her goal, without depriving herself. She used cash for her “fun” spending, and we worked together every week to make sure she stayed on track. We talked through unexpected expenses and she got through them by cutting back even more.
Andrea is proof that if you put your mind to something and really give it your all, that your goals can be reached! If you are struggling financially, don’t be afraid to seek help! City Girl Savings was designed for women who need to learn the proper skills of budgeting and spending in moderation. We are here for you! Schedule your free consultation today, or Start Your Budget now!