Jonathon & Maria's Debt Free Journey | Our Trip to the Dave Ramsey Show

“WE’RE DEBT FREEEEEEE!!!!!!!”

Jonathan and Maria screamed together in the presence of everyone at the Dave Ramsey show, employees included. This time had finally come for them! 21 months of budgeting, eating more in than out and taking the advice Dave Ramsey gives through his Financial Peace University class led them to their last house payment and a feeling of joy and relief. Just moments before they aired on the Dave Ramsey Show, Jordan and I were able to visit with and get to know them and their cute little son Jacob. I’m tellin’ ya, he was a cutie! When Jordan asked if it felt any different once they made their final house payment, and Maria had to admit that it actually....did! Yeah, it really did! 

Jordan has always been a fan of Dave Ramsey and financial advice.  When we were engaged, we took his Financial Peace University class at our local church. This is an area in our marriage where Jordan leads us well, and I learn a lot from him. Jordan's favorite pastime is to listen to the Dave Ramsey Show on his phone--present or past podcasts--he'll listen to anything. He’s very good in this area, and I’m thankful for the ways he’s blessed our business with his knowledge. I’m pretty sure I was capable of blowing $$,$$$ on lenses and camera gear a couple years ago when we started our business. BUT. This man here kept our business on a debt-free track, which we’ll share in another blog post later. Hey, just another way we compliment each other. ;-)

For now, we want to share the story of this beautiful family right here. We were so encouraged by their story and loved being able to visit with and ask them questions.

What was also special for us is we not only got to meet Dave and this sweet family, BUT we got to photograph their debt free scream for them. And then it hit us. We aren’t limited to only using our gifts and gear to save wedding day and anniversaries memories—we can photograph the excitement on the daily of people we meet on the road! Or anywhere! I truly experienced the same feelings of nerves and joy that I do on wedding days as I stood there waiting to start snapping their debt free scream. SO MUCH FUN! We loved that the entire Dave Ramsey team stopped what they were doing to show their respect and excitement for the family, as well. You'll notice that they clapped and celebrated from the balcony above as they screamed. The atmosphere was just awesome. Join in on the excitement we experienced by watching their video here and reading their story below! 

We were thankful they shared their story--what worked for them and their drive for becoming debt-free--with us for you to read here:

Our journey started 3.5 years ago. Maria and I took Financial Peace University when we were engaged. It started really great discussions about our future and what we wanted our life to look like.  We both had the desire for Maria to stay home with our future kids and we knew it wasn't going to magically happen. We had to be intentional. That was our drive to start and finish this journey.

One of the hardest parts was the beginning....figuring out how to budget and using the envelope system. It was hard for both of us to use only cash, but we decided to give it a few months. Once we got the ball rolling, it became easier month by month.  We put a budget meeting on our calendar at the end of every month to review the previous and next month budgets. This communication was so important and has really helped us grow closer together.

We didn't have any debt when we got married, although I had paid off a 20K student loan before we got married. We started saving as much as we could for a house down payment. After two years in an apartment, we were able to put about a 50% down payment on a 155K house.  We had Jacob a couple months after we moved in to the new house. After he was home and healthy, we started putting all our extra money towards the home.  We were able to pay the house off this year after about 21 months.

It was so awesome to walk in to the bank and make that last payment! We remember starting this journey thinking how daunting it sounded to pay off our house. Hearing other success stories was so encouraging to keep us going.  The journey was challenging at times, but definitely worth it. We feel such an emotional weight lifted off of us by having absolutely no debt. It's hard to describe, but it's real. Maria and I had our motivation to do this so she can stay home with our kids. We are so excited to have her do that very soon!

Thanks again Jonathan and Maria! Jordan and I are so happy to have met you and been encouraged by you!