Our journey to debt freedom and financial independence began in June of 2009.
I was born and raised in Newport News, Virginia on the Peninsula. Lived there until I enlisted in the Army in 1982-1986; upon leaving the Army I attended Christopher Newport University to pursue a degree in Marketing. In 1989, I graduated, received an Army commission and headed back into the Army. Growing up I was not taught nor did I see good financial decisions being made in our household, my parents never talked about finances or how to properly manage them or run a household. This was a private topic between the two of them.
My grandparents were very frugal in their spending and living. I remember during Christmas all the grand kids would receive a bag with a small amount of candy, fruits and nuts. Once we became teenagers we would also get a couple of dollars along with the bag. Keep in mind my grandparents were both born in the late 1800s and had over 30 grand kids. This is something that is very dear to my heart as I have fond memories of them.
Our financial stress story and what changed our lives as a couple forever started in 2007 when we purchased our home in Texas. We moved from Hawaii (where we were stationed with the military), did our entire preapproval loan via online. This was not a problem, the problem came in 2008 when the housing market was in trouble, we owned two houses in North Carolina that were both rental properties, in mid 2008 they were both empty and we had three mortgages we were paying with no rental income. In July 2008, we received our August mortgage statement on our Texas home stating our monthly payment would increase by 800.00 a month for the next year to make up for previous property taxes that were missed at our 2007 closing. This was a major financial burden as we now had 3 mortgages with one increasing by a significant amount and no additional revenue from the rental properties. We also had some credit card debt like most Americans. We initially thought we were bankrupted but in reality we were not, and that’s when we knew something had to change. Our poor decisions to carry debt based on income from two rental properties caused us many sleepless nights and arguments. In March 2009, we sold both rental houses, paid off our debt and decided that we would never borrow money. We agreed this would not happen to us again. I retired from the Army in 2011, debt free and we started on our new journey together.
Today, we are debt free (less our Texas home). We have no credit cards and my relationship with Arlyn is better than it’s ever been. We are in agreement and on the same path. Living in a relationship that is based on trust, respect and honesty is an amazing and blessed way to live!
Having financial freedom affords me to do work that matters most and spend time with my wife and family vacationing when we are free. Financial independence affords us freedom, state of well-being and contentment that words cannot possibly describe.
I have lived on both sides of the financial equation. I am committed to never going back to a life of debt and money mismanagement. I feel deeply inspired to help others with their financial situations.
I am forever grateful to Arlyn who never doubted me when I talked about changing how we lived and prepared to give. She has been my greatest supporter in our journey together.
Boris is a Ramsey Solutions Master Financial Coach and has attended and completed Ramsey Solutions Financial Coach Master Training.
Completion of Ramsey Solutions Financial Coach Master Training does not create an employment or agency relationship with Ramsey Solutions or its affiliates; it does not constitute a license or credentials to engage in legal, tax, accounting, investment, or other professional services; nor does it constitute an endorsement or recommendation of the Coach by Dave Ramsey.