I wanted to write a post that shared my entire journey from being a money moron to becoming a money maverick.
It all started in my twenties when my husband and I were living paycheck-to-paycheck and I had the dream to become a millionaire. I wanted it all, and I was searching to find out how I could make my millionaire dream a reality.
This chase led us to a seminar on real estate investing.
It promised wealth, and the lifestyle I thought we were looking for. We signed up for a weekend that would change our lives forever.
After investing $25,000 (You can read all about that first painfully embarrassing money mistake here), we had many events to attend and a new mentor to help us on our way.
Within a year, we had purchased two large apartment buildings, a 7,000-square-foot home and some other reno properties. Life was busy to say the least.
Then the market tanked and the city I held all of my properties in was blacklisted for commercial lending. Which would've been fine, except the boiler went on one of our 18-unit apartment buildings because someone had tampered with it in the middle of the coldest winter snap in history at that time.
Long story short, we ended up walking away from this building and we would have been OK because the previous owner held the financing so we did not owe the bank anything.
At the same time, we had closed on another 20-unit building. This new building was beyond a nightmare and cost us everything. It led us not only into the worst stress of our lives but into personal bankruptcy.
Shortly after, we thought we could make it all back and got some investors to try again only to be left with hundreds of thousands of dollars worth of debt.
We had no credit, one decent income stream (husband’s job), two kids, and mountain of debt that I thought we could never pay off.
We went from our 7,000-square-foot mansion to a 2,400-square-foot straight out of the 1970s. It red velvet carpet, a green linoleum kitchen and purple and pink bathrooms. I was deflated.
We made minimum payments to our investors for years.
The one thing I had learned from being a millionaire on paper was that it was extremely stressful. Sure we had a live-in nanny, travelled all over and learned from some of the best motivational coaches on the planet (which came in handy and made it possible to survive our horror story).
But, I was always stressed, hardly ever had time for my family, and when I did, I was always getting calls about problems and not small ones, really big ones – like that time one of our tenants set a unit on fire.
I vowed to myself that if being a millionaire meant I had to sacrifice my peace and my family, it was not worth it.
This shook my world.
I was very lucky to have a husband who made a good living and even though he could have retired when everything was awesome, he didn’t because he had no idea what else he wanted to do at that time.
That was our saving grace . . .
Where did that leave me?
I felt like a complete failure and all the debt was just weighing on my shoulders year after year.
I ignored it for a long time.
One day I was watching TV and came across a show call Till Debt Do Us Part (a Canadian show). The host, Gail, is a hard-ass money coach who helps couples drowning in debt find a way out.
I was inspired.
I realized that even though I had hundreds of thousands of dollars to pay off, at least it was because of bad business decisions and not just silly spending.
I started watching her show more and more, purchased her book, and started looking for other personal finance gurus, which is how I found Dave Ramsey. I took some courses and read many more books from over a dozen authors. I started searching for blogs written by people paying off debt or living a more simple life.
I realized the only way to get rid of this debt was to master my finances and fix any spending problems. For so many years we were just ignoring this debt and living how we wanted to live. It was time to get real.
Once I got real I paid off over $109,000 in one year. If you want to read more about how I did that, read the post 5 tips how I paid off $109K in 1 year.
The reason I wanted to start this blog was to help inspire others to get a handle on debt and to master their finances.
I finally have peace of mind and even though financial challenges still pop up, I have all the tools I need to deal with them.
I want to share all those tools with you.
If I can do this, anyone can. If you want to start taking control of your finances today, start with our FREE mini course Money Mastery Made Simple.
I am so glad you are here. Come back often!