Do you ever feel like your money goals are buried beneath an inescapable avalanche of debt? We get it. Prices and interest rates are soaring. So it's easy to feel like achieving your personal finance goals is next to impossible. But Jade Warshaw is proof that you that your dreams of a debt-free future are indeed attainable.
What makes Jade Warshaw so sure? The fact that she and her husband Sam were able to pay off nearly half a million dollars worth of debt in under eight years.
Here's how Jade went from being buried by debt to enjoying all that debt-free living has to offer.
Meet Jade Warshaw
The first year that Sam and Jade Warshaw were married, they enjoyed a life of honeymoon bliss. Like many young couples, they spent the early days of their marriage simply enjoying each other and avoiding touchy topics like future money goals.
It wasn’t until they decided to move to South Florida that they began to sit down and really assess their money situation. The more numbers they crunched, the clearer the terrible truth became.
A bleak financial picture emerged. They had $280k of student loans. Don't forget the $20k worth of credit card debt. Plus they owed the $100k on an investment property. When all was said and done, the couple found themselves face to face with $460k worth of debt!
As you can imagine, discovering that you're in nearly half a million dollars worth of debt isn’t always the easiest news to hear. At that moment, the Warshaws realized that they had a huge choice to make. How they proceeded would shape their financial future.
Dave Ramsey to the Rescue
Having grown up in a house where money was a struggle, Jade Warshaw knew firsthand how much of a toll that debt can take on a marriage. Like many Americans who find themselves staring down a barrel of debt, Jade admits that there was a time when she and Sam were tempted to play the blame game.
Plenty of us can relate to having to work through feelings of anger at the banks, credit card lenders, or economy that led us down the wrong financial path. But ultimately, Jade decided to embrace the wisdom of Dave Ramsey, who always says “You can’t blame your way to a better life.”
Jade had tuned into a few episodes of the Ramsey Show in the past. She remembered feeling like it offered solid advice when it came to finances. In case you're unfamiliar, the Ramsey Show is a radio program and podcast that’s been hosted by Dave Ramsey and co-hosts like Ken Coleman, Rachel Cruze, and John Delony for over 30 years.
Jade couldn’t help but wonder if the personal finance guru could help with her and Sam’s money predicament. That’s when the couple decided to take a chance and buy copies of Ramsey’s Total Money Makeover book and workbook.
It didn’t take long for them to realize that Dave Ramsey was onto something when it came to his actionable strategies for pursuing a debt-free life. Realizing that their current tactics clearly weren’t working, Sam and Jade Warshaw decided to go all in on a Dave Ramsey-fueled action plan.
The Battle for a Debt-Free Future
The great thing about Sam and Jade’s story is that it isn’t one of overnight success. There were no sudden windfalls or unexpected inheritances from long-lost relatives. Sam and Jade Warshaw paid off nearly half a million dollars worth of debt one day at a time.
When they first agreed to submit to the strategies outlined by Dave Ramsey in his books, Sam and Jade were both working as musicians. As anyone who has ever worked in the entertainment industry can tell you, gig work can be incredibly unpredictable, especially in a rocky economy.
But after deciding that financial freedom was worth perusing, they both began taking on supplemental work. Whether it meant training dogs or baking cupcakes on the side, slowly but surely Sam and Jade worked as a team to bring in extra money and chip away at their debt.
Jade admits that the couple went so far as to sell nearly everything they owned to help get ahead. While it was a good start, she and Sam ultimately decided that they wanted to figure out a longer-term solution to bring in more income.
Jade remembered once hearing someone say that the key to leadership was to learn to multiply and duplicate yourself. So she and Sam started to explore what that would look like for them.
The Birth of Warshaw Entertainment
When it comes to earning extra money, Jade advises utilizing the skills you already have to find work you actually enjoy doing. Jade and Sam decided to use their experience in the entertainment business to establish their own talent agency called Warshaw Entertainment.
By helping other artists score gigs in live venues and even on cruise lines, the couple started to see their income multiply and their debt diminish. But did working full-time in the entertainment industry ever give them burnout? Sure it did.
But as Jade puts it, “you behave like you believe.” When you constantly redirect your thoughts to the reasons you want to achieve your goals, your actions will follow.
Due to the amount of money they owed, it took Jade and Sam a bit longer than the average consumer to get out of debt. But the key was that they never lost momentum and kept making progress.
As Jade points out, speed can be an important factor when it comes to getting your debts paid off. Achieving such momentous money goals is not always easy and most people can only sustain the necessary cutbacks for so long.
Life After Debt
Jade and Sam worked as a team in both the entertainment business and on their finances. Together, they were finally able to get their debt paid off and start using their money to build wealth. Now they're able to focus on investing their money in their retirement funds. They are secure in the knowledge that they are financially stable, even in a rough economy.
When asked which tools were the most vital to their progress, Jade points to the time-honored budget as the toothbrush of financial hygiene. She admits it may not be what some debtors want to hear. However, creating and maintaining a solid budget is a vital key to investing in your own progress toward financial freedom.
Whether you use an old-school ledger or a budgeting app, Jade advises seeing your budget as an ally instead of an enemy. “Tell your money where to go instead of wondering where it went,” she says.
Jade also says that working as a team with Sam played a huge role in getting their debts paid. But she points out several statistics that may be surprising to hear.
Only 43% of married couples combine their finances. That means that the majority of couples miss out on the benefits of an ally on the journey to a debt-free life. Couples who combine their finances build wealth up to 4x faster. Plus, working as a team can also go a long way in improving a relationship.
After all, there are few better trust-building exercises than learning to communicate about personal finance topics like money, business and investing.
Jade Warshaw Becomes a Ramsey Personality
After realizing how much Dave Ramsey helped her, Jade wanted to help others. Drawing on her skills in the entertainment industry, she went on to become a Ramsey personality in her own right.
It's easy to feel that things are hopeless. But don't forget Jade Warshaw's story. She and Sam are living proof that it's never too late to take control of your own financial future.
What do you think of the debt-free story of Jade Warshaw? Are you interested in a debt-free life?
Please let us know in the comments below.