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Merrimack Valley

December 8, 2012

With income of $70K, no need to sell car to pay student debt

I make about $70,000 a year, and I have $9,000 in student loan debt. I also have a car that would bring enough to allow me to pay off the student loans. Do you think I should sell?

There are two questions I ask when it comes to selling a car to pay off debt.

One: Is the value of your car and other vehicles, including motorcycles, boats and such, more than half of your yearly income? If so, then you have way too much money wrapped up in things that are going down in value.

So, unless you’re talking about a super-expensive car, I’d say the answer on this one is no.

The second question is this: Can you become debt-free, except for your home, in 18 to 24 months without selling the car?

If the answer is yes, then I wouldn’t sell the car.

There’s no reason to sell your car in this scenario, unless you just really hate the thing or need different transportation.

In this case, it sounds like your car is a reasonable percentage of your income.

I’d hold on to it and just save like crazy to kill off this student loan debt.

With your income, it shouldn’ttake more than a year. Good luck?

Dave Ramsey is America’s trusted voice on money and business. He’s authored four New York Times best-selling books: “Financial Peace,” “More Than Enough,” “The Total Money Makeover” and “EntreLeadership.” The Dave Ramsey Show is heard by more than 5 million listeners each week on more than 500 radio stations. Follow Dave on Twitter at @DaveRamsey and on the web at daveramsey.com.

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