My Money Story: How Nissar Paid off $11,000 in 7 Months
My Money Story is a OneSavvyDollar series where we interview people who have successfully paid off any major debt (i.e student loans), saved, or overcome any financial hurdles.
The aim is to inspire, encourage and motivate you to take hold of your personal finance because “financial fitness is not a pipe dream or a state of mind. It is a reality if you’re willing to pursue it and embrace it.”- Will Robinson
Can you give us a little background about you?
I am a full time software salesman and I’ve been doing this for 10 years. I also have a side hustle which is a career focused blog careermetis where I spend every weekend and week nights working on.
In the past, I had quit my job to start a business full time and that didn’t work out. So I’m going at a slower pace by doing this part time with a little investment of $20-$30 monthly.
Maybe the future will be different but right now, I’m leading this double life of being an entrepreneur by night.
How did you get into debt?
Well, I got into debt twice! Yes, twice! Earlier on in my career, I was driven by money.
I tracked and watched my finances like a hawk and was able to buy my first house (a multi unit property) at 26 in 2010. Everything was going great; I was in a good position financially with a great job till I got cocky.
I felt I could do more by taking more risk. So I quit my job and decided to buy a franchise. It was a disaster!
Trying to get the business up and running took more time and money than I had anticipated. I also wasn’t very knowledgeable about the business and it all led to a downward spiral and I ended up selling the property.
It was the lowest point in my life. However, I was able to pay back debts owed from the sale with a little surplus.
But it seems like I still didn’t learn from that mistake.
Shortly after, I got into day trading. One advice: Don’t do it! I had no idea of what I was doing and lost more than $30,000. This brought me to net loss of $11,000.From my experience, I can tell you debt weighs you down no matter the amount.
What was your strategy for paying off your loan?
My strategy for paying off my loan was really simplifying my life. I consolidated my debt by getting rid of my car which brought a savings of about $700.
The cost of owing a car can be expensive anywhere (but especially Toronto) when you’re looking at car payments, insurances, weekly fueling and repairs. I moved back home with my parents and saved $900 from renting.
I also got rid of my credit cards with the exception of one or two.
I don’t believing in cutting up all credit cards because that is like saying you’re going to burn down all the fast food places to keep you from gaining weight. We know that doesn’t make much sense. You still need a card for emergencies.
One other strategy I used was the snowball method.
I love the snowball method because it can help you build a sense of confidence. I stopped saving and focused on paying down debt. By the beginning of 2016, I was very relived to be debt free.
Even though I stopped saving, my goal during that time was not only to reduce my expenses but also increase my income.
So I switched jobs and was earning $15,000 more so that helped too. I made sure to celebrate each debt paid off.
After moving back home, how long did it take you to pay off your loans?
After moving back, it only took me 7 months to pay off my debt. I mean i still had to help out around the house financially but I got the most relief from not having a car. Public transit is just as fine and reliable.
How did you keep yourself motivated enough to accomplish your goals especially when you did feel like sticking to your plan?
Reading books and then reading about other people’s successes helped me.
One of my favorite books is, Richest Man in Babylon by George-Clason. This is where the concept of paying yourself first comes from.
I’ve also read, Dave Ramsey’s series, Think and Grow Rich, Robert Kiyosaki’s Rich Dad Series,The Millionaire Next Door and The Automatic Millionaire.
But one of the books I really cherish and recommend is Grant Cardone’s book: The 10X-Rule-Difference-Between-Success and Failure. Grant helped me changed my mindset about money and goal setting.
A lot of the personal finance experts focus on cutting down costs; sure that’s necessary but Grant also talks about finding ways to increase your income because you can’t live like a miser all your life.
I will add that it is not enough. Until you apply what you’ve read to your life, it is wasted knowledge.
What advice would you give to someone looking to pay off their student loans?
Watch your personal finances and take your money seriously. Unfortunately, no one talks about money.
I didn’t learn about money in school or at home with my family which I’m sure is most millennials experiences. But there are lots of information out there to guide you.
For instance Reddit which has a sub-category for personal finance where I read other people’s stories. Sometimes you are stuck in your own situation and think you can’t get out of it till you read someone else’s success story and you see it’s possible.
Also, be accountable. I have a mastermind group I meet up with where we help keep each other in check.
How can our readers keep in touch with you?
Careermetis is the best place to keep in touch with me.
Congratulations Nissar. We wish you much success in your financial journey!
Do you have a money story? Would you like to share your money story to motivate, encourage and inspire others? Send an email to here with the subject line “My Money Story” and we will be in touch.