How We Paid Off $60,000 in Debt

Guest: Carrie Rocha

Guest: Carrie Rocha

Carrie Rocha, founder of, and her husband paid off $60,000 in non-mortgage debt in two and a half years. How did they do it? Carrie joins me to share their story and their strategies. If you're struggling with debt, you won't want to miss this one. This episode aired live October 6, 2012.

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Listen to Carrie's second interview where she shares strategies from her terrific new book Pocket Your Dollars.

About My Guest

Carrie Rocha got her family out of $60,000 in debt in two and a half years. In March 2009 she launched and began teaching others to do the same. Her first book Pocket Your Dollars: 5 Attitude Changes that Will Help You Pay Down Debt, Avoid Financial Stress, and Keep More of What You Make (Bethany House) will hit the shelves in January 2013.

Excerpt from this interview

Gerri: So how did you keep the motivation going? After a certain period of time, you feel like, gee, I really earned this, I should splurge. Did either of you struggle with that?

Carrie: For sure, yes, absolutely. I think anybody who commits to any sort of long-term goal in life has moments where they say, I'm done, I don’t want to do this. I mean, I don't care what it is, you’re a parent and you’re like, can I send you back? You have those moments for sure. But you know what, recognizing that there are ingredients to motivation, I don't think we consciously thought this but now looking back and say, you know what our commitment , sometimes it was a matter of really focusing on the goal - why are we doing this? And that sort of built us back up and our commitment to the process even when it was hard.

Sometimes, we felt defeated because some big expense came and we didn't plan for it and we felt like, can we really do this? We would need to just pump ourselves up and get our confidence back up, we can, we are working on a plan, we’ve come a long way. Ad sometimes, things feel out of your control. At one point, shortly after we got out of debt, we’ve become a one-income family. And then a few weeks after that, my husband decided to go back to graduate school, I got notice, as the sole breadwinner, I was going to be laid off. And you feel like, this is beyond our control, we can’t do this, I’m going to quit. And then you have to stop and go, no, there’s a lot of know there's one of things that are in my control and I’m going to focus on those. And so you just kind of find ways, whatever it is that’s pushing at you and tempting you to quit to counter that.

Gerri: One of the things you mentioned Carrie that I wanted to make sure we touched upon was the fact that a lot of folks who are dealing with debt do have families and it’s very hard, it’s one thing to say, okay, I’m going to cut back but it’s hard as parents to cut back when it comes to the kids, right? So what did you do there?

Carrie: Yes, And I will say while we were getting out of debt we didn't yet have them. So you need to know that. But we have kids now and one of the things, I’m all about our financial life starts on the inside. Our attitudes, our relationship money and the way that we do that with our kids is we talk about money. I’m not saying a formal, let’s sit down at the table kids and talk about money. I’m saying that when they come with me to the grocery store, when we’re walking in I say, my kids are a little older, they’re 3 and 5, do you know what you guys, Mom and Dad work and we earn money and then when we going into this store now we’re going to use that money to pay for the things that we need. I’ve just explained as we’re going.

So in our everyday life, we’re talking about that. We’re in the middle of a basement remodel right now and it's an expensive project. And so we’ve explained to our kids, different things come up and my husband and I talk about and we say, do you know how we’re doing this, we’ve decided decided as a family that this is something that this is something that was important to us. So over the last number of months, Mom and Dad decided not to do this, to do that, to do the other and instead we've saved our money and guess what, those workers that were here, we paid them money to do this project for us.

And so we’re just trying to have these conversations to instill the values and the mindset because if you just kind of come in and say, alright, we’re done kids, we’re not spending, they don't understand they don't buy into what you're trying to accomplish and why you would want to make that change. It’s going to be a battle of the wills.

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