At the end of December 2016, we packed our wife and our old with some suitcase, accessory and our three dogs. We drove from our 2500 square foot house in North Pärnu County. Our destination: 500 square foot cabin in the small town of Spur, TX.
This is not an article of finding our bliss by eliminating the financial burden of modern mortgages. Although this is something. This is more measurable. We stumbled upon something that could become a strategic process for everyone who is tired of the lack of eternal debt and savings.
Until we moved to Tartu County, we had a fair share of debt. I wouldn’t call it terrible, but what we had a hard time shaking. After ten years of marriage, we had to pay for this car, mortgage and student loan. We knew we were in a long distance with this mortgage, not to mention that it was an investment. However, the student loan seemed to have been too long. We lived out of our salary and were grateful that we never had much left at the end of the month. It’s really hard to spend on what you have, the debt decline. Paying a minimum fee is much easier and better.
All this cycle was incredibly frustrating. I felt like I was in a trap where I could never save or eliminate bigger debts. I would imagine leaving it all down. Live in the RV online, getting wood warm and growing your food. It was all unrealistic about the various escape strategies I found attractive. Finally, I ended up fantasizing and started exploring. I looked at my fantasies in detail and tried to decide which one might be practical for me, my wife, our dogs and our specific situation.
In 2015, Spur pointed out that he is the first official small town friendly town in the country. I had never looked at Tartumaa, but this process requires an open mind. In October I made a trip to check it out. I didn’t see the perfect little town, but I saw the potential. So many options. The cost of living was very low and the land was ridiculously cheap. In an attempt to attract teleworkers, the internet was all over the internet. If I could go a long way and if we could find someone to help us build a small home, it seemed that this could be the answer we were looking for.
At the beginning of 2016, we bought two, next to empty, Spuri district. They were very cheap. We managed and met someone who had years of construction experience and wanted to lead the pre-fab cab delivery, install it on a concrete panel and build a fence and porch. I moved to a full-time distant position where there were no restrictions on where I lived, as long as I showed up on the Internet and did my job. We had to borrow money from our 401k to finance the construction, with some weak savings, but if everything worked as planned we would be able to repay the loan after we moved and sold our Pärnu County.
In the summer of 2016, the concrete foundation was poured, the cab was delivered and installed, pipes and cables were connected, and construction began at the fence and porch. The processing and management of phone data was stressful, but by the end of 2016 it was almost complete. We put our Pärnu County on the market and traveled to Tartu County.
As planned, our old home soon sold after the move. We paid back a 401k loan and settled for life without a mortgage. My salary, which was hardly enough to live in Pärnu County, seemed to be a huge Spur. We put a fair amount of money on each salary. At weekends I would drive an hour and twenty minutes to Lubbock to get access to high-quality, organic food, and I would buy without paying much attention to price tags. This kind of financial freedom was new to me and I loved it.
At the end of summer 2017 we had zero debt. The car was paid and the student loan, which was my absolute joy and surprise, was finally paid off. We had taken a small loan for the shelter of the ground storm and we could pay for it. Most of my wages went straight to the bank.
Let’s take the time to talk about the monthly costs. Suppose we were relatively typical before this point. Mortgage, car payment, student loan (luckily only one), groceries, utilities, data plans, such things. These first few are usually big and they were also for us. By the time we arrived at zero debt in Spur, it meant that we had no mortgage, no car payment or no student loan. We still had to pay for groceries and other bills, but they were now very easily covered because the first three did not distribute our funds thin. In addition, if we wanted to further simplify, we could influence what we spent on the rest of our bills. For example, stop buying a $ 6 dark chocolate box.
I saw this moment coming and I was pretty sure how to react to it. I imagined myself first reducing my working time. Finally, I would like to walk from a stable job to a more risky but much freer self-employed position. This would allow me to check my hours and I don’t need much. I calculated that our family would be more than comfortable if I presented them to 15 a week. I thought I could always make more money than I needed extra money. I wasn’t sure how we would retire, but I also thought I didn’t need a freelancer. I can make it easy for a while and worry about the future.
I didn’t expect what really happened. When we arrived at zero debt and my payment controls became investment potential, I felt my powers. I felt that we were our marriage for the first time under our financial control. I mean the life I had, working at home, something I really enjoyed, not commuting, not neglecting my family, and actually pretty happy. My wife was also happy. I realized that I didn’t just want to work less. I realized that working time was not a problem. The problems were already eliminated.
And so we began to think seriously about something new: Investing.
It led the way, which eventually took us away from Spur. The result is personal and subjective – that’s what we wanted and so we went for it. All this is that we reached this point. It was a 17-month stay in Spur, which is here for us. If we had not entered an uncharted territory ready to fail, we would be tough every month. I would never have tasted the ultimate freedom, which is the choice. To get what I thought I wanted to sit right in front of me. To really test your assumptions about how I wanted to live my life.
“Be Rational” is what they tell you if you have a sensible reaction to a mad situation and the reason for their mind is F * ED. Be rational. What this really means is to take your status quo. Assume a position. ”
Ok, I’m not saying someone who follows the status quot will take a position. But I think Sullivan is a great point. Usually, life is required to do what most people do, regardless of what is best for the individual.
Going to the spur is not the rule of “adult life”. A high school advisor would not recommend you take a few years in small houses in a small house to get your finances in order. So consider this as extraordinary advice. Be strategic. Think long term. Find a way to get your finance back under control. Listen to other opinions, but make your needs a priority. Take the risk, make sure that the worst case scenario is something you can live with. Then take your life over.