Personal Finance Blogger Attempts to Pay Off $160,000 in Student Loan Debt in One Year

Today’s college graduates are almost guaranteed to leave college with two things: a diploma and a ton of student loan debt. But not all debt is created equal. After going to college and graduate school for a combined 14 years, Chris Thomas and his Wife graduated with more than $180,000 in debt. They have since worked consistently for almost two years, paying all the debt they can, but still owe $161,000+ in student loan debt.

“It’s frustrating,” Thomas says. “We don’t have any other kind of debt, but our student loan debt is keeping us from starting a family and living a normal life. It’s on our minds all the time. So far we’ve made every payment, but we’re terrified if anything unexpected comes up how we would be able to deal with it.”

To have an outlet for his frustrations, Thomas started blogging about personal finance. “I wanted to tell other people the things I never realized until too late: such as no, student loan debt isn’t really ‘good’ debt. At the same time, I only have myself to be mad at, so my sites are very solution based. I never should have taken on so much student loan debt and I hope my blogging helps others avoid the same mistakes”

To help combat the debt, Thomas and his wife have worked every odd job they can. Thomas even started a freelance writing business. On a former blog, Thomas had interviewed Kelli Space, a fellow recent college graduate with nearly $200,000 in student loan debt. She had started a site requesting donations for her student loan debt.

Thomas talks about his own idea for paying off student loan debt through the help of the internet. “I was fed up with student loan debt, so I wanted to create a plan to pay it off in one year. But I wanted to work it off. From that, the Debt Payer Challenge was born.”

The DebtPayer Challenge

The Debtpayer Challenge is Thomas’s attempt to work off $160,000+ in student loan debt in just one year. It will be run through his personal finance blog, The site accepts donations, but also requests sponsors for 1/2 days throughout the year. The cost of sponsorship is $250.00, and the sponsor will receive in return a blog post, a press release, or a sales letter drafted by Thomas. The idea is that the sponsor will also receive good press. Finally, every sponsor will receive a link and thank you on and, Thomas’s two (page rank 2) websites.

“I am going to do everything I can to be debt free by the end of the year. I’m not sure if I can pull it off, but I’ve got a lot of energy and I’m hoping to, with help from others, make this year into a marathon of debt paying.”

Thomas still has a lot of sponsorship spots to fill, and you can contact him about sponsoring or promoting the Debt Payer Challenge.



Chris Thomas, owner of the online freelance writing and web-copy company, FreelancePF. Chris’s interest in personal finance stems from leaving grad school with six figures in student loan debt.