Payoff Member Paris C. shares how he bounced back and overcame difficult financial burdens following his divorce.
At Payoff, we invite our Members to share their stories with us not only so we can keep improving our services, but also so you can read other people’s stories about paying off debt.
Our Member Paris C. recently shared his debt story with us. He talked about the painful divorce that left him with a painful amount of debt to deal with, plus his financial goals for his and his children’s futures.
Payoff: How did you find yourself struggling with debt?
Paris: I had been married for over seven years. Unfortunately, that relationship ended due to many factors inside and outside of my control. One of the stresses in my relationship happened to be a partner that was not committed to achieving or maintaining financial independence.
Over the years our financial differences, as well as other interpersonal problems, led to the dissolving of our marriage. In the end, I was legally stuck and financially obligated to a responsibility of which I was least responsible. I felt I would never dig myself out of the hole of which I was buried. Given the bad financial decisions my ex-wife and I had made I was left alone with bad credit and a nearly overburdening monthly financial obligation. I began to search for lenders at many local banks, but given my credit history, I was denied over and over.
“I felt I would never dig myself out of the hole of which I was buried.”
One day, browsing social media, I saw an ad from Payoff and decided (assuming I would be turned down) to apply. I was glad I did. I was approved and given a loan to pay down nearly all of my credit debt I [incurred] after the divorce. The loan not only saved me money with respect to interest charges but also cut down my monthly obligation by nearly $200, which I was able to save and roll into other accounts! I am now on my way to financial freedom on my terms and with terms I can easily manage.
What’s the most significant improvement in your life since signing up with Payoff?
There were two significant improvements in my life, both of which support each other.
- Psychological. I could now rest easy, knowing my credit had been improved, my payment (one single payment) was manageable and I could more easily afford my lifestyle. I was also relieved to have a goal … to look forward [to] — I knew exactly how long I would have to pay to be free of [credit card] debt.
- Financially. I was now able to budget money for emergency funds, birthdays, vacations, a new car and have some leftover money to roll over into the following month’s budget! This too offered me mental peace of mind, knowing I was no longer living paycheck to paycheck. I would soon be able to pay cash for most of the items I needed to purchase. I could see the light at the end of my financial tunnel that used to be blocked by fees, outrageous interest payments and unmanageable schedules.
What’s your dream and how will becoming debt-free help you achieve that?
I want to reach a point in my life over the next five years. I want to cut my need to use credit, have a savings account that I don’t need to empty and have my emergency funds built up enough to support myself and my children’s expenses for six months to a year (if I were to get hurt, lose my job, etc.).
“I want to cut my need to use credit, have a savings account that I don’t need to empty and have … emergency funds …”
Payoff has given me the financial momentum I needed to achieve these goals. Payoff and their team are also doing something very different than any other financial institution has done before — being actively involved in the lives of their clients! They reach out to you to check on you, they send you articles to increase your financial knowledge, making you well-informed buyers, they make it easy to manage your account from anywhere you have access to a network. In other words, Payoff is being actively involved in the health and success of its Members when most institutions just want your payment to be on time.
What part of our service so far has been the most memorable?
Informing me about my financial personality has been the most beneficial aside from the weekly educational articles. Knowing how I act in financial situations has made me consciously aware of some of the mistakes I am prone to make when making financial choices. Just being aware, on a conscious level, of our habits can make us recognize when we are making the right choice or merely falling victim to our habits and biases.
Thank you for sharing your story, Paris. We can’t wait to hear more about your progress toward your goals in the months to come!