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March 12 2007
I am so excited to tell you our story. I'm 28 and my husband is 31. In April of 2005 my husband graduated from Law School. At the time we had 5 children, and our 6th was born in September of 2005. After taking the Bar and waiting for results, my husband started his job as a lawyer for the Air Force in January of 2006. We had a little over $100,000 in loans! Luckily we didn't have any credit card debt, and all of our loans have very low interest rates. (the smallest is 4.76%, then 2%, and the biggest loan is only 1.625%) We bought our first house in June of 2006. I decided to start paying any extra that we could scrape up, on our loans. At the beginning of 2007 when my husband got a slight raise, it automatically went onto the bills. So now it's March of 2007. And in just a little over a year, and thanks to a large tax return (having 6 children helps!), we paid off over $16,000!! There are going to be a few increases in our income over the next few years. (2nd job teaching during the school year, an expected bonus, etc.) But with following our plan, we will be able to have everything paid off, except our house, within the next 4 years!! Our next move is to have my husband go in and talk to his finance office about changing our withholdings so we get to keep more each month instead of lending money to the government. And once that goes through, we'll have our debt paid off even faster.

As an Officer in the Air Force, my husband makes good money. But still, with 6 kids, we defintely don't have a lot of extra. And we don't have a lot of 'nice' things. I would much rather be out of debt and working on having a secure future, then buying new furniture or clothes. Our biggest student loan was for a term of 30 YEARS! We'll be done with that one, and the other loans, in a total of 5!

Some of these things I started before I had even heard of you. But after reading your books I had even more motivation, and understood a little more about what I should do. I'm still a little unsure about retirement accounts and investing, but I'm going to re-read your books and really take notes this time.

Thank you so much.

PS: In Smart Couples Finish Rich you have a table showing how a 7 year old could become a millionaire. Well I showed it to my oldest son, whose 8, and he got very excited. And it's already his goal to be a millionaire.
You're going to be a new family tradition!!

- Nanette Sparks
Brown Mills, NJ