Our new website is optimized for the most current web browsing technology. If you are using an older web browser, part of our website may not function properly as designed. Please consider upgrading your browser for an error free experience.
How Bernadette Crushed $300,000 of Student Loan & Mortgage
At Solvable, we care about your financial well-being and are here to help. Our research, articles and ratings, and assessments are based strict editorial integrity. Our company gets compensated by partners who appear on our website. Here is how we get compensated.
At Solvable, we care about your financial well-being and are here to help. Our research, articles and ratings, and assessments are based strict editorial integrity. Our company gets compensated by partners who appear on our website. Here is
Last Updated on
Bernadette Joy of Crush This Debt sat down with Solvable to share her debt-free journey. Here’s how she crushed $300,000 of debt –
My husband and I have paid $300,000 in debt in 3 years. It was made up of a lot of stupid decisions. But if you’re asking money wise, it was $75,000 of student loans, when I decided to go back and get my MBA, and not one, but two, mortgages because I thought I was going to be the next HGTV star.
Something I needed to get over was creating a new mindset around money. I actually grew up in a household with a father who was an accountant, a mother who was an accountant and a brother who is an accountant and I was the only one that was not an accountant – yet we never talked about money. I ended up having to learn a lot of stuff on my own to get started: getting all the resources, finding out what was out there from the experts, and gathering that to create my own mindset.
When I started my debt-free journey, I didn’t know anybody else who was doing something like that and I didn’t have anyone to talk to to be honest, and it was hard. It was hard to go through this stuff and not feel like anyone understood what I was doing. When I looked to Instagram and started posting about all of my debt-free tips and things that I was doing, I was surprised that I had a lot of people reaching out to me in secret who I thought were successful on the surface – the doctors, the lawyers, who I thought were making a lot of money, and on the back saying “How are you paying all of this off, I am drowning in debt. Can you help?”. And I realized that just by sharing what I was doing that I was helping other people, and maybe helping them start their own debt-free journey.
This year we paid our house in April, which was so exciting! I was like, I still have all this energy and all this knowledge to give what can I do? So I started my one million dollar mission to help other people pay off debt. I’ve asked people if they’ve listened to my podcast, watch my Youtube or come see me speak at a conference or at a workshop and just report back to me if they paid off any debt to let me know how it went. I’ve had many people respond to my survey which is awesome. The crazy thing is that it’s been only like 15 people who’ve responded so if you do the math of that, it’s like $20,000 in average per person that have paid off, and 3 of them said they have paid over $70,000 in debt after listening to my podcast or sitting down with me having a conversation.
I think the biggest thing that has saved me a lot of money honestly, is learning how to cook. Learning how to cook saves you so much money and my husband and I have also learned how to eat healthier. A lot of people think that you can’t eat organic and eat fresh food and also be on a budget, but that’s what we’re doing. It’s also done wonders for our health that we’ve saved a lot of money like that. So if you can, learn how to cook. When people say they hate cooking it’s because they’re bad cooks. So become a good cook and you’ll save a lot of money.
I had this conversation with someone recently who reached out to me to help her with her debt. She said she had $15,000 just in credit cards and she was saying that whatever challenges they had, her kids thought that she was rich. She has 20 year olds asking for money now to pay for their wedding and their student loans and she’s like: “I can’t afford it. I don’t know why they keep asking for money, they think I’m rich.” I said “Well, did you tell them that you’re not rich?” and she was silent for a while, and I said “How would they know that you don’t have the money if you don’t tell them?”. So I think that one of the best things that parents can do. I wish I had that in my family – being honest about what the financial situation is and include the kids in those conversations. A lot of times I see parents trying to shield their kids from that, thinking that they don’t want to stress them out or maybe they’re just embarrassed to tell their kids “no, I just can’t afford to pay that for you”. But what you learn is that kids are really resilient they may not understand it now, but down the road when they become adults, they’ll get it.
Solvable is a for-profit company that helps customers resolve their tax problems, but a free service for consumers. Partners cannot pay us to guarantee favorable editorial reviews or ratings. We do not publish favorable (or unfavorable) editorial reviews or assessments at the direction of an advertiser or partner. We always work to put consumers first and do our best to provide value in meaningful ways, but our reviews are subjective.
How We Make Money
Solvable is compensated by some of the companies seen on our website. Most often, Solvable receives fees when one of our readers clicks, fills out a form, applies for, or receives a financial product from one of our partners. We also earn fees for capturing consumer stories and writing about them, displaying advertising, having our partners sponsor certain parts of the site, and writing content that may be relevant to our partner and their audience. This compensation may impact where products appear on this site, including article pages, comparison listings, the order in which they appear or if they will even appear on a given page, and our matching recommendations. Solvable has not written about, reviewed, or rated all financial products available to consumers.
In addition, we may be compensated in the following ways:
Referrals to consumers who use the online form or locator line that may provide expert answers to questions;
Marketing tax resolution, tax preparation, tax audit help and general tax assistance.
Referrals to services that help consumers with tax resolution, tax preparation, tax audit help and other tax issues.
We do recommend that you shop around and compare services and costs with other companies while performing your own due diligence, especially since people’s experiences with companies can change over time.
Free Solvable Services
The offers that you are matched up with are from companies or attorneys/law firms that we may receive compensation from. Based on our initial review of such companies or individuals, we feel comfortable introducing them to our readers. We won’t recommend something just because we’re offered payment to endorse or promote it. However, we do recommend that you shop around and compare services and costs with other companies while performing you own due diligence, especially since people’s experiences with companies can change over time.
We are not attorneys and we don’t provide legal advice. As always, we encourage you to do your homework and check out individuals and companies before you hire them. If you are already working with an attorney, we urge you to ask them your questions. After all, they will be familiar with your situation and the laws in your state.
We hope that you find Solvable helpful in your efforts to get a fresh start.
Personal Loans Advertiser Disclosure
The Personal Loan offers that appear on this site are from companies or affiliates from which solvable may receive compensation. This compensation may impact how and where products appear on this site (including for example, the order in which they appear or whether a lender is “featured” on the site). solvable does not include all Personal Loan companies or all types of offers available in the marketplace.
Personal Loan Providers determine the underwriting criteria necessary for approval. You should review each Provider’s terms and conditions to determine which loan works best for you and your own personal financial situation. All reasonable efforts are made to provide and maintain accurate information. All rates, fees, and terms are presented without guarantee and are subject to change pursuant to each Provider’s or affiliates discretion. There is never a guarantee you will be approved for credit or that upon approval you will qualify for the advertised rates, fees, or terms that were shown.
Be sure to speak with your representative about the actual term and rate you may qualify for based on your credit history and ability to repay the loan. Lenders may charge an origination fee generally around 1% of the amount sought. Be sure to ask up front about all fees, costs and terms associated with each loan product. Loan amounts of $1,000 up to $35,000 may be available through participating lenders or affiliates; however, your state, credit history, credit score, personal financial situation, and lender underwriting criteria can impact the amount, fees, terms and rates offered. In some cases, lenders may require that you have an account with them already and for a prescribed period of time in order to qualify for better rates on their personal loan products. Ask your representative for details.
Credit Card Advertiser Disclosure
The card offers that appear on this site are from companies or affiliate offers from which solvable may receive compensation. This compensation may impact how and where products appear on this site (including for example, the order in which they appear). solvable does not include all card companies or all card offers available in the marketplace.
Credit Card Providers determine the underwriting criteria necessary for approval. You should review each Provider’s terms and conditions to determine which card works for you and your personal financial situation. Information is provided by the Credit Card Providers and is not a guarantee of approval.
All credit card rates, fees, and terms are presented without guarantee and are subject to change pursuant to each Provider’s discretion. All reasonable efforts are made to provide and maintain accurate information. There is no guarantee you will be approved for credit or that upon approval you will qualify for the advertised rates, fees, or terms shown.
Any opinions, analyses, reviews or recommendations expressed in articles, marketing materials or otherwise are those of the author’s alone and/or solvable, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any Credit Card Provider.
See the online Provider’s credit card application for details about terms and conditions. Reasonable efforts are made to maintain accurate information. However all credit card information is presented without warranty. When you click on the “Apply Now” button, you can review the credit card terms and conditions on the provider’s website.
Business Loans Advertiser Disclosure
Business Loan offers that appear on this site are from companies or affiliates from which solvable may receive compensation. This compensation may impact how and where products appear on this site (including for example, the order in which they appear or whether a lender is “featured” on the site). solvable does not include all Business Loan companies or all types of offers available in the marketplace.
Business Loans are those loans that are for commercial use and any property and/or proceeds from the proposed request will be used by the requestor for commercial purpose only and not for any personal, family or household purposes.
Most of our Business Funding Partners or affiliates, do not require collateral for business loans; however, please note that it is possible to be offered another product by the lender depending on your needs and if the underwriting requirements dictate the same. Traditional bank and SBA loans generally are known for collateral requirements.
There is no one-size fits all business loan. Rather there are several types that will likely be offered and or discussed with you upon completing your request. Business Funding Partners determine the underwriting criteria necessary for approval, you should review each Partner’s terms and conditions to determine which business funding option works for your business’s financial situation. All reasonable efforts are made to provide and maintain accurate information. All rates, fees, and terms are presented without guarantee and are subject to change pursuant to each Partner’s discretion. There is never a guarantee your business will be approved for credit or that upon approval your business will qualify for the advertised rates, fees, or terms shown. Lender terms and conditions will apply and all products may not be available in all states. Ask your loan representative for details.
Student Loan Refinancing Advertiser Disclosure
Student loan offers that appear on this site are from companies or affiliates from which solvable may receive compensation. This compensation may impact how and where products appear on this site (including for example, the order in which they appear or whether a lender is “featured” on the site). solvable does not include all student loan companies or all types of offers available in the marketplace.
Potential savings may vary based on the interest rates, balances and remaining repayment term of the loans you are seeking to refinance. Your overall repayment amount may be higher than the loans you are refinancing even if your monthly payments are lower. Variable rate options will fluctuate over the term of your loan with changes in the LIBOR (or other index utilized by the lender) rate, and will vary based on applicable terms and presence of a cosigner. Fixed interest rates may be based on applicable terms and presence of a co-signer. Additional terms and conditions, and rates are subject to change at any time without notice and may not be available in all states or for all types of current student loans. Such changes should only apply to applications taken after the effective date of change. Please note: Due to federal regulations, Lenders are required to provide every potential borrower with disclosure information before they apply for a private student loan. The Lender you select is required to provide you with an Application Disclosure and an Approval Disclosure within the application process before you accept the terms and conditions of your loan. solvable is not a lender or creditor, it does not offer, extend or alter credit terms. Only participating lenders can perform the full application and deliver the required disclosures, please ask your lender about rates, terms, fees, and potential discounts that may be available for each product.
Certain federal and private student loans may not be eligible for consolidation/refinance.
Certain consolidation/refinance plans may result in higher monthly payments or negative consequences (i.e. prepayment penalties).
Consolidation/refinance may lead to other negative results, such as loss of grace periods.
Loans in default generally cannot be consolidated until completion of a repayment trial plan so tell your lender if you are in default and determine relevant options (be wary of those asking for upfront fees as well)
Other options or programs may fit your needs (i.e. personal loan, debt consolidation and/or debt relief). Consult your financial and/or tax advisor prior to making any decisions.
Solvable is not a creditor as it does not offer, extend or alter credit; rather it is an online market lead generator that allows consumers to shop and compare rates, terms and costs associated with financial products such as mortgages, auto loans, personal loans, student loans, etc. solvable does not originate or fund any product it markets; rather it has a network of lenders or Partners/affiliates. You may choose to speak with one or more of these lenders or Partners/affiliates to determine what your actual terms and savings may be. Only a lender can provide you with a formal application for credit, your inquiry form here is merely an expression of interest and/or intent to obtain credit or assistance. You must discuss your actual credit situation and fill out the lender’s required documents prior to obtaining an extension of credit. Network lenders may not have the best or the lowest rates so you are encouraged to continue to shop and compare additional lenders, credit unions, local financial institutions, etc. to ensure you are truly getting your best deal for your situation.
You should contact your tax professional or other financial advisor to determine if you can actually realize savings by refinancing when it can extend the life of your current loan. You should ask the lender about all terms, rates, fees and costs associated with each product and if you will realize a net tangible benefit from the same. All initial estimated savings is done by trying to calculate what your rate may be; however, solvable does not have that information and cannot guarantee potential savings or that lenders will approve you for such product that would warrant those savings. Rates are not guaranteed and change daily. Lenders/Brokers/Dealers/Partners that perform the actual underwriting will have to determine if you meet their underwriting criteria which is unknown to solvable at the time of matching/offer/quote delivery. All amounts are estimates and examples only and do not represent an actual offer.
Congrats! You're One Step Closer To Resolving Your Tax Debt.