Gazelle Intensity in the New Year - Page 2 - Mothering Forums

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Old 01-10-2010, 12:09 PM
 
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I'm not sure how what I'm doing differs from snowballing and gazelle intensity or what Dave Ramsey would recommend to someone in our situation, but if the goal is to pay off CC debt, why not just pay pay pay everything extra til it's gone?

Am I missing something?
I feel basically the same as you. I think maybe for some people they need the "snowball" in order to feel accomplished. Get one card paid off as soon as possible to feel like they're getting somewhere, thus why they start with the smallest amount. But if what you're doing works for you, I say go for it!

                                       DS 7 ~ DS 3

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Old 01-12-2010, 02:20 AM
 
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Originally Posted by witch's mom View Post
I'm not sure how what I'm doing differs from snowballing and gazelle intensity or what Dave Ramsey would recommend to someone in our situation, but if the goal is to pay off CC debt, why not just pay pay pay everything extra til it's gone?

Am I missing something?
Snowballing is taking the amounts that you've been applying to all your cards and applying only the minimum payment to the larger ones and putting all the rest on the smallest.

Then you also put all your extra money that isn't budgeted towards the smallest debt. Once that is knocked out your payment from the total that was going to debt 1 goes onto debt 2. You continue to pay the actual minimum on debt 3. And also throw any extra money you can squeeze out of your budget or selling other things onto the current debt.

So the scenario would look like(I made up some numbers, but bear with me):

Pre snowball:
debt1: $990; Was paying $200 per month, actual minimum payment is $35
debt2: $1240; Was paying $200 per month, actual minimum payment is $50
debt3: $2450; Was $200 per month, actual minimum payment is $75

Snowball:
Month1:
Redistribute $600 budgeted CC payments
debt1: $475
debt2: $50
debt3: $75

You also squeeze an extra $515 out of the budget and by selling off that giant piece of furniture taking up space in your garage. (hypothetical of course)

At the end of the month debt1 is gone!!!


Month2:
debt1: 0 - crushed by gazelle intensity!
debt2: $475+$50 = $525
debt3: $75

Things are tight in month two and you can't sell anything off or pick up any extra work, so you just have your budgeted amount to pay down the debt. But the balance of debt2 is now down to $680.


Month 3:
debt1: 0
debt2: $525
debt3: $75

You get an extra $200 by working some odd jobs this month. $155 completes the pay off for debt2. The remaining $45 dollars goes to debt3.


Month4:
debt1: 0
debt2: 0 - crushed by gazelle intensity
debt3: $525 + $75 = $600

Now all $600 you were paying to three debts three months ago is going to the last debt. Which is knocked down to $1805 by the end of the month. If you are only able to pay it down with your budgeted $600 per month it will be gone in 3 more months.

Voila. Snowballing. The point is to see progress faster. Paying off the highest interest rate first may save you a few dollars in the end, but that's not much to pay for the sense of accomplishment from seeing that first zero, which is a big thing for people who feel that they are out of control of their money. At least that is Dave Ramsey's theory.

Gazelle intensity is eating rice and beans and beans and rice, selling off anything you don't need, cutting cable, etc to be able throw all that money at eliminating debt. It's his phrase for people who make extreme changes in their lifestyle in order to eliminate debt as fast as possible.

What you are doing sounds like great progress.

Working mama treehugger.gif to K energy.gif (2/2007) and A diaper.gif (6/2013). Expecting stork-suprise.gif EDD 10/7/2014.
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Old 01-16-2010, 12:53 PM
 
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I'm just so proud of dh. Beyond that he's the one who found TMMO and brought it to me. I'm unemployed right now and we are on a tight, tight budget - gazelle focused and everything is planned down to the last cent. We've been spending alot of time lately w/ mil - which I haven't been entirely happy w/ - because she's needy and high maintenance and expects us to come get her (2 x 40 mi round trips = 80 miles extra I wasn't planning on gassing my car up for each week + feeding her). But dh thinks it's something we need to do for alot of reasons and he's right. We stopped spending time w/ her many years ago because in the past she had a pattern of having these huge attention grabbing episodes within 2 weeks (she'd be in the ER - we'd have to drop everything - often dh missed work - and it turned out to
be nothing).

Yesterday she called and wanted to borrow money because supposedly she was going to be overdrawn in her checking account. And she didn't want to pay us back w/ cash, she wanted to put the $ on her dept. store cc. It was just an ill-conceived scheme. I told her we weren't going to be able to do it (very much agree w/ Dave's philosophy about not loaning out $ - plus every cent in our budget has a name - none of which is mil). Then dh spent 10 minutes telling her the same thing. We do have some $ in the Emergency Fund - but neither of us wants to dip into that obviously. Her lack of planning is not our emergency. When dh got off the phone w/ her she said she was going to ask one of her tenants for the cash (she's the manager of her apt. complex). But then she called back 20 mins later to tell us that she'd discovered that in fact she was going to have money left over in her account and she didn't want us to worry. Well, we weren't going to be losing any sleep over it.

But I'm so proud of dh for sticking to our budget and staying focused. It would be easy to hand over our Emergency Fund $ to her to take care of her - it's only money, right? But as you all know it's more important than just the cash - it's about changing our family tree so we're not in our 50's and asking our kids for a loan to keep our checking account from bouncing.

~T | head-strong ap mama to 2 fur-kids | TTC since 2001 | remembering 8/00, 5/04, 1/07 & fur-kids, Apollo (04/03-12/09), Bella (04/06-06/12) & Keevah (06/03-04/14)
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Old 01-16-2010, 01:15 PM
 
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We're gazelle-intense here We're doing zero-based budgeting and intentionally putting a name to each dollar we get. By the end of this month we will have our line of credit re-funded and our emergency fund will be around $500. By the end of February, it will be at $1000 and we'll pour the extra money on the car, which will be paid off in April. Everything will then go to the credit card. We plan to be out of debt (minus the house) by the end of the year. I'm really proud of our progress - we've been able to save money in so many little places. $10 here, $20 there, $5 somewhere else. Add that in with the focus on spending EVERY dollar before we receive it and we have found so much money in our budget.

I love the idea of being debt-free and of paying cash for a future vehicle. IT takes dedication to get there and I'm working hard to focus on the positives and the benefits so that we don't get dragged down by the strictness.

WOHM to DS11 and DD9, both T1Ds

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Old 01-16-2010, 02:14 PM
 
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"zero-based budgeting"

Can you tell me a little bit about this? I'd love to have a name for my philosophy other than "Oh, Mommy/Wifey/Aunt Smithie is being neurotic about not spending more than she makes (or has earmarked in savings for a vacation, etc.) in any given month, so we can't get Chinese food tonight!"
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Old 01-16-2010, 03:08 PM
 
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We're currently in the grip of a TMMO. We're doing better than last year (medical expenses down, overtime hours up ), but we're struggling with our cell phones.

Dave says get rid of them - cannot do this, for safety and/or work reasons.

Our current plan costs almost $250 a month for 4 lines, b/c DS & I both have Blackberries (they were "buy one, get one free" ). He uses the GPS feature on his for work - he must have GPS. We both use them a lot to keep up with e-mail, family, and church, and I use mine to keep track of everyone's appointments, schedules, etc. Our teenagers have a lot of activities, etc. and we need to be in touch to coordinate who's picking up who.

We could ditch the Blackberries and reduce our minutes and our bill would go down to $130, which is painful, but still not bad for 4 lines. (We'd do better switching to another carrier, but we have too much time left on our contract - it would be $600 to break it.) This would require the purchase of a Tomtom for DS, so we'd start seeing the savings after the first month. Even so, this would be over $1000 a year. (Reducing our minutes wouldn't cause a problem - we raised them b/c we went over during Hurricane Ike, but that was an unusual circumstance.)

But we don't WANT to. Like a PP said, my gazelle has a limp!

We're doing it at the end of this billing cycle, though. It's painful, but we need the room in our budget - I'm uncomfortable with how closely every dollar is ear-marked. Our house is 36 years old - things break, things need to be maintained - we wind up spending money on our house and yard Every Single Month. It's not really an emergency, since it's so predictable. Our plan is to set aside these cell phone savings for regular home/yard maintenance expenses, and whatever we don't spend one month can rollover to the next, when we might need more.

Being a grownup is complicated, lol.

Holly

So...I'm 43 and pregnant with #3 - how'd that happen?  

 

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Old 01-16-2010, 06:36 PM
 
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Being a grownup is complicated, lol.
Dh needs his cell to patch for work - kind of important to be able to reach the hospital when someone's critical in the back of an ambulance.

We tried to cancel our landline because we don't use. We figured even w/ loss of bundle savings (approx $15) we'd still save $40 a month - which was decent, right? When I called to make those changes, they tacked on so many extra fees and supposedly it would have only made a difference of $10. For example we're suppose to have 'price for life' on Internet, but they claimed that wasn't true, and were quoting a price change of $20!! We're going to try it again - dh seems to have that special touch that makes customer service people want to do anything he asks them to.

~T | head-strong ap mama to 2 fur-kids | TTC since 2001 | remembering 8/00, 5/04, 1/07 & fur-kids, Apollo (04/03-12/09), Bella (04/06-06/12) & Keevah (06/03-04/14)
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Old 01-16-2010, 07:28 PM
 
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Subbing for inspiration!

My goals for 2010 are to finish our house addition (everything is DIY except the foundation pour last summer and the inspections), drop our food budget to 100 dollars/week (family of five), save for dd2's preschool costs, and start saving for my own MLS (need the degree to get the jobs, but it's ~20K total spread over three years once I start the program).

DH has been collecting/selling scrap during his days off. But the winter weather means less scrap right now.

We have cell phones and no land lines... actually, our last two homes haven't even been wired for phones. And given the rural setting + kids + dh's job where he isn't near a phone, well, we'd never give up the cells. But we do have the cheapest phones/plans possible and we don't use the fee based extras like texting or internet.

Be pretty! Be practical! Be Pagan! Visit Pagan Hearth & Home!
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Old 01-16-2010, 08:49 PM
 
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Agh! I am so not being a gazelle. I need to keep reading about you guys and your intensity and success so I can get back on track. It is this insane nesting!! I haven't bought hardly anything for my house for solong and suddenly, i feel like I NEED to BUY!! We're still staying away from credit though so I feel good about that.
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Old 01-16-2010, 09:21 PM
 
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The Family Feast book... we're gluten free because of dd1's celiac disease (no wheat, barley, rye or their derivatives). We're also about 90% vegetarian. Would there be enough recipes to make it worth the purchase? I've tried Hillbilly Housewife in the past but her budget menus just don't work for us. But I really want to keep the food budget under 100 dollars.

I think I need to figure out how to make my own rice cakes... they seem to have become the staple of our diet.

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Old 01-17-2010, 06:54 PM
 
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Originally Posted by Smithie View Post
"zero-based budgeting"

Can you tell me a little bit about this? I'd love to have a name for my philosophy other than "Oh, Mommy/Wifey/Aunt Smithie is being neurotic about not spending more than she makes (or has earmarked in savings for a vacation, etc.) in any given month, so we can't get Chinese food tonight!"
Certainly

It's a system of paying your bills by pre-spending every dollar of it. Basically, your income and outgo are identical. This week, we sat down with our paychecks and divided the money up by starting with the things that NEED paid (based on due date), then looking at the expected expenses (gas, food, daycare, church, etc) and setting aside money for those, then looking at the remainder and figuring out where to put it.

For example, one week we had $218 left after we did all of our pre-spending so we started on our list and applied the money to them. We set aside $200 for our line of credit and put $18 in the vacation fund on the counter. Then, DH went to the bank and took out $420 for the kidsitter and $18 for vacation and then put childcare money in an envelope and the vacation in the jar. I took out $100 for groceries, spent $32 and put the other $68 in an envelope. Every pay we do the same thing but the envelopes and amounts vary. For instance, we fund a medical envelope and put $140 a month into it - we'll use it for copays and then deposit the right amounts in the bank to cover ordered prescriptions. Some months will be lower so the extra will sit in there to cover the higher months.

What we do, though, was SPENT EVERYTHING. We have a zero balance, in essence. By doing this, we are telling our money where to go and how to be used and (more importantly) don't have the option of wasting it. By stopping ourselves from wasting this money, we are able to use it.

I fell in love with the idea in TMMO. If I hadn't already returned it to the library I would be happy to give you a page or chapter to look at!

WOHM to DS11 and DD9, both T1Ds

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Old 01-19-2010, 08:04 PM
 
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I want to be more like a gazelle! You guys are so inspiring. I have definitely been doing a bit better with money since I started meal planning (it used to be common for us to eat out 2-3 times a week!!!), but I have a loooong way to go. This past weekend, for example, I dropped $35 on wine and beer that we (obviously) did not need, AND we bought a computer. We had been planning on that purchase and had been saving up, but still had to put almost half of it on a credit card. We could have waited until we could pay cash, but DP said he just couldn't take our old (admitedly, extremely frustrating) computer anymore. So off we went to Best Buy.

It doesn't help that my DP is completely averse to talking about money, or having any type of budget or savings plan. I am going this alone, folks! It's very frustrating. But actually, he is trying. When we met 5 years ago he had 3 or 4 years worth of income tax debt. He is self-employed and would file his taxes each year, just not pay them. Amazing! But I convinced him to call the IRS and set up a payment plan, and we were able to pay them off in about 2 years. Now we are down to both of our student loans and the mortgage...

But I am feeling more and more comitted to paying things off, especially since we are wanting to make some major purchases in the next year (mattress, vacation, wood stove). I am planning to try to sell some vintage stuff I have been holding on to (because I love it! but not as much as i will love a new mattress....) and use that money towards paying off our student loans. I have been paying an extra $50 on the mortgage each month, but now that I'm learning about this "snowball" method, I may stop that and put that extra $50 on the student loans.

Thanks, everybody, for keeping me inspired!

 Married to my sweetie and enjoying life with our fabulous dog.  Expecting #1 in August 2012!!!!

 

 
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Old 01-19-2010, 10:27 PM
 
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I am SOOOOO inspired! So many of you are really doing great. We have hit rock bottom. No money in checking (until I get paid a week from Friday), no money in savings, overdraft maxed out, credit cards maxed out, and we are drowning in debt. I have a very good job as a university prof, but we live in a high COL area and my husband's job is seasonal and sporadic. We've also made a lot of mistakes, which plan to change.

In the past I never paid attention to how much I was spending on food. We don't eat out and live frugally, so I always thought we were doing pretty good. Then the economy went to pot and my credit all dried up, payments and interest rates skyrocketed, etc.. It was a real rude awakening.

However, I do see light at the end of the tunnel. Consolidate the CC debt with MMI and have one big payment a month. Will be debt free in 5 years! Car will be paid off next year (can't sell, I have to drive to my job on an interstate), and we should get a nice tax return this year. I also will be teaching summer school.

I am excited about gazelle intensity! Have already started making a price book for grocery shopping, and have cooked from scratch every day this week. Plan to give up ALL extras, like soda and convenience foods.

Sandy (41), Mama to Oscar (Feb 2009) and Aria (April 2012), infertility and miscarriage survivor brokenheart.gif 11/25/10 and brokenheart.gif 6/22/11.

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Old 01-20-2010, 12:09 AM
 
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I was all set to pay off everything on the credit cards in a few months here and start saving for our next car we'll need, gazelle intense and all that. Then DH decided he wants to take several trips, wants to buy some stuff, wants to fix the siding on the house, and wants a dog. And he and DS1 won't stop complaining about what I fix them to eat at home, they'd rather go out. Ugh! Plus a friend is staying with us for 2 months now and we have to feed him half the time and drive him around, he gives DH some cash in return and DH spends it.
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Old 01-20-2010, 11:31 AM
 
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I was all set to pay off everything on the credit cards in a few months here and start saving for our next car we'll need, gazelle intense and all that. Then DH decided he wants to take several trips, wants to buy some stuff, wants to fix the siding on the house, and wants a dog. And he and DS1 won't stop complaining about what I fix them to eat at home, they'd rather go out. Ugh! Plus a friend is staying with us for 2 months now and we have to feed him half the time and drive him around, he gives DH some cash in return and DH spends it.
Oh-- that sounds rough! Don't give up hope, though! Maybe you could try talking to your DH (and DS1) about what foods they prefer to eat, and cook more in line with their tastes? Hopefully you can reach some sort of compromise about spending-- maybe only take one trip? maybe fix the sidding after you pay off 1 credit card? Good luck!

 Married to my sweetie and enjoying life with our fabulous dog.  Expecting #1 in August 2012!!!!

 

 
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