With the New Year right upon us everyone is thinking of setting their 2015 goals. For a lot of you that means paying down a significant portion of your student loan debt.
Instead of waiting for January to roll around it’s a good idea to jumpstart your debt payoff goal so that when 2015 comes you’re already off the ground running. Once you build up some momentum you’ll be pretty hard to stop!
Here are ten ideas for getting your debt payoff goal off the ground.
Sell the Stuff You Don’t Need Anymore
Never underestimate the power of selling the stuff that you no longer need. Just because you think you might be holding onto a pile of junk doesn’t mean everyone else will. One man’s trash is another man’s treasure!
Go through your belongings and sell everything you don’t want, need, or use. I personally love selling on Facebook Yardsales. Stuff sells so quickly and for a lot more than you would think!
Cash in Your Change
If you’ve been collecting change in a jar all year use it for something amazing – paying off debt!
Take it to the bank, cash it in, and apply it to your debts.
Ignore Raises and Overtime
Do you get paid overtime a lot? Do you have a raise coming up in the near future? If so, don’t spend that extra cash.
You’re already used to living on your current salary so don’t give in to lifestyle inflation. Put all of your overtime pay and raises straight to your debt’s principal.
Start a Side Hustle
What can you do for a little extra cash? Clean houses? Babysit? Walk dogs?
Even if you only set a goal to earn an extra $20 per week that will accumulate to $1,000 per year. Those small amounts count.
Increase Your Debt Payments by a Percentage Every Month
How much do you pay on your debt now? Is it possible for you to increase that payment by 2-5% every month?
By slowly increasing the amount you pay you’ll be less likely to notice that you’re living on less money. And once again, all these small amounts can add up to something amazing.
Lower One Big Payment
Are you paying an insane amount of money for a car or house? What if you sacrificed for a year and downgraded your current situation.
All the extra money could then be funneled toward paying down debt and once you’ve gotten your goal accomplished you could go back to living the lifestyle you want. (It will feel so much better when you’re debt free!)
Lower All of Your Recurring Expenses
There’s always a way to lower recurring expenses like internet, cell phone, TV, and insurance. Take one day and try and lower these expenses. Negotiate with your current carriers or switch companies altogether.
Then put your savings straight to debt.
Have a No Spend Month
If you want to accumulate a bunch of money to throw at your debt by the end of January then have a no-spend month, starting today.
A No-Spend month is when you try not to spend any money other than regular bills like rent and utilities. You’re forced to get creative and depending on your monthly spending level the savings can be HUGE.
There’s most likely something that you’re subscribed to that you don’t really need or use. Cancel it!
Take the money you were paying and instead put it toward your debt. Even an extra $10 a month matters.
A great way to stay on top of your goal and make amazing progress while still feeling good about it is to challenge yourself.
Make it a game. Set monthly and quarterly goals for yourself and try to beat them. This will keep paying off debt fun instead of daunting. If you change your mindset you’ll be able to move mountains.
What ideas do you have for someone looking to kick off their debt pay-off plan?