Can You Really Live Debt Free In America?

Photo by Kimberly Brown-Azzarello – CCL

Turn on the news, watch TV, listen to the radio, get online…everywhere you look and listen you’ll find we are a nation that embraces debt. Every day I talk to people who have accepted debt as a way of life. “You’ll always have a car payment…you’ll always have a mortgage…you have to leverage debt to get ahead…if I didn’t use credit cards I couldn’t ever buy anything nice…”

“Modern man drives a mortgaged car over a bond-financed highway on credit-card gas.” ~Earl Wilson

As a nation, we have bought fully into the lie that we just can’t live without debt. But I call shenanigans…I say BULL…and I intend to show you the truth.

Consider this:

According to a recent survey by the Federal Reserve Bank of Boston, about 56% of American consumers are in debt. More than half!! And that’s a huge problem! Those are the people we coach and are trying to help.

But you know what that tells me?  The other 44% of Americans are living debt free!

“Yeah Clint, but that 44% must be all the rich people.”

According to Thomas Stanley’s book, The Millionaire Next Door, only 3.5% of American households have a net worth of 1 million dollars. That means that 40.5% of non-rich Americans are living debt free. And Stanley points out that about 80% of those rich folks are self-made millionaires. They weren’t born rich. They made smart financial decisions and worked hard… and it paid off.

So can you REALLY live debt free in America? Can you really live without consumer debt? You better believe it!

Along with millions of others, Katy and I are proof that it can be done.

There are several decisions we made that have allowed us to become and stay debt free:


1. We decided that debt is not a way of life.
Proverbs 22:7 says, “the borrower is slave to the lender.” Debt is a choice, not a requirement. Debt is not a privilege, it’s a product that we decided not to buy. Debt had weighed us down, hog-tied our income and caused more stress than we were willing to live with. So we said “Enough Is Enough,” and made a decision to never again borrow money.

2. We decided not to care what people think of us.

It’s been estimated that somewhere between 60-80% of luxury cars on the road are leased, which is the most expensive way to operate a vehicle. So why would so many people lease these luxury vehicles? Because they want to look like something they’re not. They are looking good but living broke. The newest car, the fanciest house, the latest fashions…it’s all a show put on by people who care what others think of them.  So Katy and I decided that we don’t care what you think of our used cars, or our modest wardrobe, or our simple lifestyle.

3. We decided to delay short-term pleasure in order to win long-term.
Most people’s only financial motto is “If it feels good, do it.” And sure…I want a brand new Jaguar, I want a 60” 3D plasma, I want to go on an Alaskan Cruise. But I also want to pay for my children’s college, retire comfortably, and leave an inheritance to my children. If we want to buy something, we wait, save up and buy it when we can actually afford it, because that’s what rich people do. It takes some sacrifice to win in finances and in life.

There is no quick-fix, magic formula or secret system. Debt Free is a way of life that is only possible by adopting a Debt Free mindset, making Debt Free choices and taking Debt Free actions.  It may seem like hard work, and at times it is. But the feeling of true financial peace and security far outweighs any sacrifice it takes to get there.

Is it possible to live debt free in America?  Absolutely…and you can do it!

Yours In Freedom,


Maybe you’re facing a really tough financial situation and feeling trapped. Maybe you’re drowning in debt, or even considering bankruptcy or foreclosure. Or maybe you just want to ensure that your financial future is bright. No matter what your financial situation is – we’re here to help. Contact us today for your free 30 minute consultation.

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  • From Debt to Set

    Hi Clint,

    This is a great post. I too share your sentiment and am working along with my girlfriend of 8 years to become debt free. We have only been at it for about 9 weeks now, but we are making progress. It is going to be a long road since we have a lot of “stupid tax”, but I believe wholeheartedly that our focus and determination will see us through.

    Have a great evening!

    In the process of going from debt to set,


    • Clint Davis

      That’s awesome, Steven! I know the journey seems overwhelming, but you can absolutely do it! If you haven’t done so already, you should do some figuring and determine what your “Debt Free Date” will be. If you do, let me know.

      Thanks for the comment!

  • Las Vegas Foreclosures

    Just wanted to respond. I had a great time reading this, Outstanding post over again. Thank you.

    • Clint Davis

      Thanks Josh, I’m glad you liked it. I think one of the biggest things that keeps people from becoming debt free is simply that they don’t believe it’s possible for them. Thanks for the comment. I’ll try to keep putting out the good stuff.

      Yours In Freedom,

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  • Darth Smith

    yes liveing debt free is great but sadly with a bastardisation of the economy by the neoliberals the value of an hours labour has become a bad joke (nightmare ) so sadly the cost living ratios to income is totaly screwed so debt has made up the shortfall. chop up that credit card and tell the bank what they can do with it