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About

Thank you for visiting! Our mission is to help young families pay down debt and live financially free.

We do this by sharing our personal story, stories of others, and best practices to inspire you to change your financial life.

Our story

We started our journey to pay down debt back in 2011. Nearly $200,000 in debt we were on a path to rack up much more in the next few years. If we followed the path our culture pushes, next up would be a bigger house, then nicer cars, then a slow and steady increase in all things to accommodate our new lifestyle. Thankfully we caught ourselves early enough in the process to turn things around.

In 2011 we were sitting in a bank lobby applying for a home equity loan because both of our bathrooms were leaking in to the basement. We had nearly $50,000 in student loan debt, a $100,000 mortgage, two car loans, and had just agreed to pay a few hundred dollars a month for a lake house that my parents purchased. At that moment we realized that we needed to change our financial story.

It has been a long road to get to complete debt freedom. Anyone who says that paying off debt is easy is lying. It’s really hard. Not because it’s complicated. Really it is the opposite. It’s so mind numbingly boring that it is difficult to remain focused. Paying off debt requires patience and discipline, both traits that humans aren’t especially good at nor find satisfying. Especially in our social media era where lifestyle envy is a few swipes away.

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Who is the Financial Pilgrim?

My name is Mark and I live in St. Louis, MO with my partner and two children. We are for the most part ordinary people. I’ve worked in middle management for the past several years at a government-like organization. Mrs. FP is a middle school teacher who has decided to take a few years off to stay at home with our young children. I have a masters in economics and finance and have worked in the financial services industry for more than a decade. 

While working a full-time job I’ve also experimented with several side hustles including re-selling items from garage sales on eBay and freelance recruiting for a few years. This blog fills my side hustle void for now even though it doesn’t make any money.  

Our mission is to help the millions of young families in the world in a similar situation that we were in that remain on a treadmill of high debt, little savings, modest investments, and high financial stress. If you make median income or higher and don’t live in an extremely high cost of living area, you can do this as well. Our focus is primarily to help young families though these concepts can extend to others as well.

Join us on the journey to financial independence. Learn about the foolish mistakes we’ve made and will make. Celebrate along with us when we hit a big milestone. Ask us questions so you can learn from a family who paid down debt for seven years at what seems like a painfully slow rate. And finally, I want you to start a journey, or maybe even a pilgrimage, of your own to free your family from debt and eventually achieve financial freedom.