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    • MSE Martin
    • By MSE Martin 26th Oct 06, 4:03 PM
    • 8,111Posts
    • 42,248Thanks
    MSE Martin
    The Debt Free Roll Of Honour
    • #1
    • 26th Oct 06, 4:03 PM
    The Debt Free Roll Of Honour 26th Oct 06 at 4:03 PM
    Update Jan 2018. We started this Debt Free Roll of Honour back in 2006 and since then there have been some fabulously inspiring stories, which you'll see if you read below.

    To read the most recent debt-free announcements click the double arrow above to head to the last page of the discussion

    Back to Martin's original post...


    Welcome to the Debt-Free Roll of Honour.

    This is for Debt-Free Wannabees who are no longer Wannabees.

    Please report

    a. The date of your lightbulb moment
    b. Debts at their highest
    c. Debt-Free Date
    d. Your one perl of wisdom.
    e. Links to the MSE guides that helped you
    f. Which forum threads helped you
    g. And if you had a debt diary on the Debt-Free Wannabe board (DFW), a link to it

    And huge congratulations


    PS Please no one else post - let's keep this a pure record of successes

    PPS Please come back to let us know Debt-free No Longer Wannabes - What they did next" discussion to tell us what you've been up to."

    Past Debt Free No Longer Wannabes (huge congratulations)

    2016 TOTAL: 85

    OxfordGirl, datlex, sentientpoet, austonic, muppets, NJS2016, Bipolar_debt, monz, ab_saver, Money_Muppet , retiredandskint, lambda, Princesssparkle, Onmyway2, Seasidegal58, QuietOne, Willowpop, daveg10, NewcastlePaul, eco farmer, SpekySquarehead, C&S, Gazza1964, naff123, pineconesjay, lsmcal1984, blu3sky, villemo84, mesci, Honeylife, Karma67, timefortea, chocoholic_chick, purpleposting4, dangerpowers, e4rub, starnac, Carviscocker, Fender4, dolly84, Brightspark87, hoglet121, Bored, devon-tony, mrsbee17, Tony_, stekka, Kate_fixing_it, Gladioli, HornetSaver, sistercas, Tiglath, moneycantbuyyouhappiness, RosaBernicia, Catwoman_2015, Baldybear, Muhren, please-let-me-be-lucky, gig11, skilly, heartbreak_star, Frith, CornishMaid, tizerbelle, Ronoir,
    takingcareofthepennies, Mysteek, Sillygal, laura84gr, medusasmummy, depressed_but_determined, Soph86, princess_pea, bookworm262, Hobbes1, glentoran99, NoStrangerToDebt, CapricornLass, Serafine, 2spicy, mc2705, AshB123, koselur, mothernerd, BrandNewStart[/SIZE][/B][/COLOR]

    2015 TOTAL: 115!!

    nannygladys, beckle_82, neuromancer, Alpedro, Aphidgirl, LotsToDo, stewby, Pepperoni, Squarehead76, nonnynonny, danant, DML1954, mrshughes86, Blinky2010s, Rachiedabbler70, Playing with Fire, katy_ann, lexbubbles, diamonds, andy1886, stiltoncheese, looby1975, shofer, Karb, kittypimms, Growurown, Want_to_be_free, crazy_cat_lady, David123456, FinallyGettingFree, malnuman, ShirePiskie, black cat, boring1, kremmen, BlueEyedGirl, antonia86, ice_babe, Apple Crumble, LittleDutchgirl, natsplatnat, her_welshness, dads_albums, supersavor, KONG, HomeAlone, kerryallc71, fredtheguava, xxxJOJOxxx, The Only Girl, uncreative, NeverAgain2, Penny Bridge, boot13t, lemanie, gree0115, cakeforbrains, hydrangea, Cynical Monkey, tripled, ShopaholicNumber1, Lwsi, CrazyKitten, Nargleblast, kirstle99, Polly Wolly Doodle, SMGee, D3P0, MissShoes, kb_soma, Chimping, StrawberryJam132, maria3104, happycrafter, bassitt74, Ratison, GingerFurball, Tammy2, NewlyFrugalMumof3, cottage_retreatist, boucho11, *zippy*, MNM2903, allydowd, joee, Zabki, 7roland8, naughtymonkey, babyplum, NorthernMonkey1, Time to face the music, melwright, Daerve, johnboyinsole, Ali-OK, thewalrussaid, kika, Skinnylatte, fevlo, Seanymph, Smedley, poohbear59, happybunny86, spot3, xxlouisexx56 , Idollic, hannah2010, MrWillyWonka, Getmeoutofdebt, powellypowelly, AlexLK, Laconic, cluckyhen, rising from the ashes, KirstyO

    2014 TOTAL: 92

    2013 TOTAL: 81

    This Forum tip was included in's weekly email!
    Last edited by MSE Andrea; 12-01-2018 at 12:07 PM.
    Martin Lewis, Money Saving Expert.
    Please note, answers don't constitute financial advice, it is based on generalised journalistic research. Always ensure any decision is made with regards to your own individual circumstance.

    Don't miss out on urgent MoneySaving, get my weekly e-mail at

    Debt-Free Wannabee Official Nerd Club: (Honorary) Members number 000
Page 84
    • loken152
    • By loken152 15th Jun 17, 10:54 AM
    • 46 Posts
    • 70 Thanks
    Lightbulb moment: April 2015

    Debts at highest: 18k

    Debt-Free Date: 10th June 2017

    Pearl of wisdom: 1st things first make sure you have a emergency fund say 1k to the side, as something will bite you in the !!!! during the journey, our fridge freezer broke a month before christmas. Do a written budget every month, so you know where each penny is going. Do a meal plan each week and do a shopping list to buy the items needed for each meal, so that you buy what you need and not what you want. To borrow an expression from Mr Ramsey, live like no one else today, so that you can live and give like no one else tomorrow.
    Last edited by loken152; 15-06-2017 at 11:35 AM.
    • Tipsntreats
    • By Tipsntreats 16th Jun 17, 10:53 PM
    • 6,618 Posts
    • 10,667 Thanks
    Debt free December 2016.
    No idea how this thread works. But supporting others to their goal.
    • Ben75
    • By Ben75 23rd Jun 17, 1:05 PM
    • 46 Posts
    • 45 Thanks
    Debt Freeeeeeeeeeee
    After settling my last debt, and getting a backdated payrise on Wednesday, I am debt free.

    My LBM was early 2010, a few months before I was made redundant

    Debts at their highest were over 50k

    My debt free date was 21st June 2017

    Thanks to everyone who posted their stories, especially grateful to the F&F settlement thread and the regular contributors on there, helped me keep my eyes on the prize.

    My best piece of advice: buy and use YNAB
    • karenccs67
    • By karenccs67 29th Jun 17, 10:54 AM
    • 1,024 Posts
    • 5,503 Thanks
    I'm debt free !!!

    TBH I didn't have a lot of debt but more bad habits and lack of will power, focusing on small goals and achieving them has helped to break those bad habits.

    LBM: Listening to Martin Lewis and using this site and the forums & watching Dave Ramsey and realising if we could save a emergency fund then there would be no need to use the credit card.

    DFD: 25 June 2017
    Last edited by karenccs67; 29-06-2017 at 10:56 AM.
    ***Dont save what is left after spending, spend what is left after saving***
    • leighavfc
    • By leighavfc 29th Jun 17, 1:58 PM
    • 183 Posts
    • 126 Thanks
    Debt free as of 28/6/17, debt wasn't massive overall (just under 11k if memory serves me right). Was tough mentally but i stayed strong and determined to better myself.

    Can finally say bye bye debt, hello world!
    DEBT FREE AS OF 28/6/17
    • Whoknowskt89
    • By Whoknowskt89 30th Jun 17, 12:31 AM
    • 262 Posts
    • 624 Thanks
    Debt at highest: 3205 (tiny in comparison to most)
    Loan started May 2016 meant to be 3 years at just shy of 12% Apr
    Fully paid off today so nearly 2 years early (partly due to a promotion at work)

    Bye debt, hello healthy looking bank accounts!
    August 2017 9510/11,150 savings aim for EF and moving (by Jan 2018)
    Mortgage 67 483 Emergency fund 1500 Moving fund 8010 Treats account 648 Doing up flat 1050
    Christmas 2017 120/160
    • legogingerninja
    • By legogingerninja 2nd Jul 17, 9:36 AM
    • 35 Posts
    • 118 Thanks
    Date of your lightbulb moment: Late 2012

    Debts at their highest: 15,000

    Debt-Free Date: 1 July 2017

    Pearl of wisdom: It's easier to save money not buying stuff than it is to make money selling stuff

    Links to the MSE guides that helped you: This whole site. Repeatedly. For many years. (I love MSE) Also, updating my forum signature was great at helping me see progress.

    Debt diary:

    Overdraft: 1,528 0 | Car loan: 6,671 0 | Credit card 1: 564 0 | Credit card 2: 4,689 0 |
    13,452 (Sep '12) 0 (Jul '17)
    • Bill Bowman
    • By Bill Bowman 4th Jul 17, 1:58 PM
    • 8 Posts
    • 16 Thanks
    Bill Bowman
    Debt Free!!
    Date of your lightbulb moment: Jan 2017 (birth of first child)
    Debts at their highest: 17,500
    Debt-Free Date: July 4th 2017
    Your one perl of wisdom: Measure your progress. It turns it into a game. I always looked at % reduction each month and it made me happy.
    Which forum threads helped you: The one I started to get advice on how to become more financially responsible - thanks to everyone who contributed and provided advice. (I can't post the link).
    • sunshinegirl66
    • By sunshinegirl66 5th Jul 17, 10:06 AM
    • 28 Posts
    • 59 Thanks
    Please add me to the roll of honour.
    I paid off our debt of 37000 in October 2016 having our lightbulb moment in December 2007.
    • Amberamber80
    • By Amberamber80 6th Jul 17, 3:52 PM
    • 40 Posts
    • 39 Thanks
    Finally DEBT FREE!
    Lightbulb moment: April 2008

    Debts at highest: 18K

    Debt-Free Date: 1st July 2017

    Pearl of wisdom: Learn how to properly budget! So thankful for this site and Payplan for helping with that. Save an emergency fund first...I didn't do this and got really stuck when needed washing machine etc.

    DON'T GIVE UP....there are some really horrible times when you will want to scream/cry/give up but keep going. Proud I finally did it and all on my own!!!

    • Tipsntreats
    • By Tipsntreats 8th Jul 17, 12:29 AM
    • 6,618 Posts
    • 10,667 Thanks
    Congratulations to Ben75,karenccs67,leighavfc.Whoknowskt89,legoginger ninja.Bill Bowman,sunshinegirl66 and Amberamber80.
    Let us all support the wannabees.
    • ChrissieS
    • By ChrissieS 2nd Aug 17, 1:43 PM
    • 50 Posts
    • 25 Thanks
    Lightbulb moment: 1 August 2016

    Debts at highest: 8500

    Debt-Free Date: 26 February 2017

    Pearls of wisdom: Challenge yourself to live within budgets for food, toiletries etc. If you're looking like you're going to exceed those budgets - improvise. Source free food via giveaways, ask friends for things they're gonna throw out, let friends know to ask you round to their fridge if they're going on holiday, get free samples from shops, use coconut oil & olive oil as moisturiser etc.

    Pay money into your bank as soon as it's in your hot little hand. Even if it's less than 5. Get it off your person.

    Reduce everything. Cancel gym membership and do circuits with friends. If you're on a meter, don't run taps. Shower at work if you can.

    If you're able to take on other work, make it radically different to your usual job, even if lower paid. Make sure it's vaguely enjoyable or teaching you a new skill with training. Work in a shop one day maybe to get discounted or free food if that's not what you do in your normal job. My second job is lifeguarding at a lake and during the week I'm a desk jockey.
    • moogfoot
    • By moogfoot 2nd Aug 17, 5:56 PM
    • 5 Posts
    • 8 Thanks
    Light-bulb moment - sometime in 2009

    Dept at highest - 28000

    Dept free Date - 28 February 2017

    Pearls of wisdom.
    Its not having what you want, it's wanting what you've got.

    Don't give up. You will get there. When I look back over the last 8 years of paying back and some of the problems I faced I can't believe I have done this. The hardest part was not being able to tell or talk to anyone about it, eventually I told a couple of my closest friends when I was three years into my IVA. Not told my family and don't intend to.
    • JSBach
    • By JSBach 9th Aug 17, 1:44 PM
    • 3 Posts
    • 6 Thanks
    Please add me to the Roll of Honour; I'm a 'wannabe' no more!
    It is a great feeling to be debt free
    Proud of myself for achieving it; it seemed an impossible task when I first had that lightbulb moment.

    Date of your lightbulb moment: 2011

    Debts at their highest: c.29,000

    Debt-Free Date: 6th March 2017

    Pearl of wisdom: Stay focused but don't deprive yourself of all 'treats' all of the time. Also, if you are tech-minded, a budgeting app (like YNAB or Moneywell) can really help.
    • TimTheBear
    • By TimTheBear 9th Aug 17, 4:01 PM
    • 62 Posts
    • 102 Thanks
    For me Reality kicked in after doing an excel - 2010
    Total debt 160k

    Debt free - Dec 2015 (sorry i'm late lol)

    Present - debt free, with savings, extremely frugal with money

    I guess 2010 was an extreme low point for me... (please see my past posts!)
    • MrsTinks
    • By MrsTinks 17th Aug 17, 9:20 AM
    • 14,995 Posts
    • 23,044 Thanks
    Ladies and Smellies,

    Apologies for my absence of late - I've been round I promise!

    Anyway... I'm stupidly excited to say that as of this morning other than my mortgage and the car finance (which for long complicated reasons I don't count - same as I don't count the car as an asset) I am now officially 100% debt free

    And it feels gooooooooooooooooooooooooood!!!!
    DFW Nerd #025
    DFW no more! Officially debt free 2017 - now joining the MFW's!

    My DFW Diary - blah- mildly funny stuff about my journey
    • MSE Andrea
    • By MSE Andrea 17th Aug 17, 10:26 AM
    • 9,091 Posts
    • 21,932 Thanks
    MSE Andrea
    So many debt-free no mores! Well done everyone from all of us at MSE Towers!!!
    Could you do with a Money Makeover?

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    • vintagebrighton
    • By vintagebrighton 18th Aug 17, 1:44 PM
    • 556 Posts
    • 1,692 Thanks
    Lightbulb moment middle of 2006

    Debt at highest Initially 38,000 but added to later

    Debt free date Yesterday when I finally paid the last of the 10,000 my sister lent me

    It's been a long, long time coming - I went bankrupt in 2008 but my mental health really suffered. I kept going (I had children to support) went self employed then diagnosed with cancer then retrained started a business then diagnosed again Lost my business and spent my savings trying to live on ESA. But, here I am, debt free 11 years since my lightbulb moment

    Pearl of Wisdom Keep going. It's like dieting, if you fall down, pick yourself up, learn from it and get right back on it. There's nothing as good as that feeling of freedom not having debt gives you

    VB x
    Australia (1% Challenge #6) ~ 0/100
    Weight Loss Challenge ~ 0/42
    Save 12k in 2018 #32 ~ 4000/6000
    • doingitanyway
    • By doingitanyway 20th Aug 17, 5:16 PM
    • 3,140 Posts
    • 16,402 Thanks
    Bravo Vintage Brighton

    Enjoy your DF life.
    JANUARY 2016/SECURED DEBT=24,822/March 2018=0 DEBT FREE 23/03/18
    MORTGAGE FREE 25/07/16
    • LionessInWinter
    • By LionessInWinter 20th Aug 17, 6:33 PM
    • 397 Posts
    • 2,420 Thanks
    Congratulations!!! You must feel great to have this burden lifted
    PAYDBX18- #9 5600/5600 consists of 3800/3800 credit card and 1800/ 1800 car
    2018 - 1% challenge #14, each 1% is 56 - paid 100%
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