I wasn't on this forum when this challenge started but I would like to say that this year has been pretty good for me. I discovered this forum and got my first credit card(Disco) and a Cap1. At the beginning of this year, I knew nothing about credit cards and never planned on getting them due to my parent's outlook. Going from thinking credit cards where pointless/bad to understanding the value of them as a tool was life-changing + it made me question my parents !!! The education I've received from this forum has been amazing & a good time pass reading everyone's stories/advice. Appreciate the knowledge. My goal was to start learning about credit cards and Get my first few.... Checkmate.
I will be participating in the 2021 MyFico Fitness Challenge
It's time to mark the end of the worst year in living memory by taking stock of how I did on my first FICO Fitness Challenge. (Weird juxtaposition, but we're allowed to have hobbies even during a crisis, right?) I set my 2020 goals in February. Here's how I did:
1. Eliminate interest on revolving debt. Done. In 2018, I paid over $7500 in CC interest. In 2019 it was $4300. In 2020, it was just $500, and essentially all of that was in the first five months of the year. I had been trying to tame this beast for two years and I finally succeeded. But... it took a global pandemic and widespread lockdowns leading to drastic spending cuts, while simultaneously having the good luck of seeing my family's health and income remain in tact. Life can be really unpredictable sometimes. I'm grateful for my good fortune, but the happiness I feel about it is tempered by my awareness of the enormous suffering and loss this virus has caused for so many people.
2. Pay all cards down to zero. This was an aggressive goal and I didn't meet it. But I'm on track to pay it all off by February. Close enough. I might keep a bit of a balance for a few more months if I can do so without incurring interest or fees (c'mon Navy, let's see that New Year's promo offer!) because that will enable me to test some FICO things I'm curious about, but I plan to have the cash on hand to pay it off whenever I need to.
3. Apply for nothing other than one used car loan. As I already confessed a month or two back in this space, I completely failed at this one. I got three new cards. I didn't need them, but they have their uses and I'm glad I have them. In a few months FICO will have forgiven me for my unnecessary credit seeking. I have been gardening since June and plan to continue doing so until buying a home, perhaps in the second half of 2021.
One of the tentative goals I listed for future years was to get my scores above 800 before buying a home. When I wrote that, I didn't yet understand which scores actually matter for mortgage borrowing. What I should have said was that I wanted DW and I to both get our middle mortgage scores over 760. DW's has been there for a while, and just today I learned that mine is up to 761. Hooray! I reached an important goal before I had even properly articulated it. Now I just need to avoid screwing it up. That will be a 2021 goal.
Throughout this year, I was pleasantly surprised to see that merely writing out my monthly goals and posting them here made me feel accountable and kept me honest. For example, last month I said I wasn't going to seek more than one CLI per month. I got one within the first few days of the month. Then there were several times in the following weeks when I was tempted to request another, but I stayed strong and resisted because I didn't want to face the shame of admitting my lack of willpower here. So, I don't know who needs to hear this, but if you find yourself overindulging in the credit game, the FICO Fitness Challenge might help keep you on the straight and narrow. It did for me!
See y'all on the flip side. 2021 will be better... right?
1. Eliminate interest on revolving debt. Done. In 2018, I paid over $7500 in CC interest. In 2019 it was $4300. In 2020, it was just $500, and essentially all of that was in the first five months of the year. I had been trying to tame this beast for two years and I finally succeeded.
Whoa! You tamed it alright, good job!
Great story of success! So glad to hear you were able to accomplish your goals. Getting down that debt must be a huge weight lifted.
And 2021 has to be better!! Right?!?!