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Why Tax Deductions Shouldn’t Change Your Debt Free Journey

Why Tax Deductions Shouldn't Change Your Debt Free Journey

This post may contain affiliate links. Check out my Disclosure Policy for more information.

This time of year everyone is figuring out their taxes, filing their tax returns, making sure they get all of their tax deductions, and waiting on their tax refunds. It comes with this time of year. There is a huge personal preference to get a large refund or a small refund. I outlined why I plan to make myself get a smaller refund, but I understand why some people like a larger refund.

Currently, I get a larger refund because when I originally did my paperwork at work, I had no idea what I was doing. If I’m being totally honest, I’ve just been too lazy to change it! I plan to change it when I get a new job though.

A lot of times people get wrapped up in the tax deductions and it can be overwhelming. Lately I’ve been getting asked a lot about my debt free journey, especially by friends and family. Most of the comments I’m getting are surrounding my student loan tax deduction and not getting it when I pay off my student loans.

I try really hard not to eye roll at this, but it can be very difficult. Yes, I’ll lose my tax deduction when they are paid off, but I’ll get to keep all of that money. My friend shared this article with me that does a wonderful job explaining the math behind this, if you’re into that kinda thing like me!

Why Tax Deductions Don’t Matter

Okay, that’s being a bit dramatic. But, it isn’t exactly wrong. Yes, tax deductions are nice, but they shouldn’t dictate how you manage your finances. You should never do something solely because you’ll get a tax deduction for it, or it will lower your taxable income.

If your money move that you are making adds something else to your financial picture, then absolutely go for it! But, I wouldn’t make a move solely because you get a tax deduction. For example, I’ve literally heard people say they don’t want a higher income because it will push them into a higher tax bracket. That’s insane!!!! Taxes and tax deductions should not dictate your money moves, keep them in mind, but don’t let it sway you this much.

Let’s go back to my student loan interest tax deduction and losing that tax deduction once I’m debt free. The tax deduction would lower my taxable income by $2,500, but I’ll then be able to pocket and invest the $40k a year I’m currently paying towards my loans. Even if I just put it in a high yield savings account, that money would give me a nice return each year.

What you should do instead.

Pay off those pesky student loans! Put that money back into your budget because student loans are evil! I outlined why they are and how blind student loan payments will cause you to pay so much more on them, here. I encourage you to sit down, track your expenses, get that zero based budget going. Send all of your extra money to debt, after you have your emergency fund, and get those things out of your life for good!

If you need help with this, comment below, I love helping people get their budget set up and be sure to get my Google sheets template to help you get started with your own budget.

Don’t fall into the tax deduction trap.

It can be easy to listen to others when they are talking about finances. Don’t be afraid to be a little weird! If I listened to the vast majority of people, I’d still be drowning in $201k of student loans, instead of only $85k (HA!). But in all seriousness, the long term benefit of not having student loans definitely outweighs the small tax deduction I’d get every year, or not if my income increases. So, let’s get moving on freeing ourselves of student loans! I’d love to hear your experiences, have people told you not to pay off your student loans for the tax deduction?



When to Slow Down Debt Payments

When to Slow Down Debt Payments

When you’re paying off debt it can be difficult to slow down the process. I know for myself, I am so focused on paying off my debt that I sometimes need to be brought back to reality. It’s important to remember that a debt free journey is part of a bigger plan.

For myself, my bigger plan is to be able to live a life I love without having to think about money. But that also means that sometimes I need to not focus so heavily on my debt free journey and think about the reality of life. When you’re so focused on paying off your debt and the life you will live after your debt is gone, this can be difficult.

Sometimes, it’s important to slow down or stop extra debt payments all together. It depends on your life and what your goals are, but sometimes it needs to happen for what makes sense in the long term.

1. Unexpected life events would require you stopping extra debt payments.

This can be a long list and really depends on what your income is. But, any unexpected events, like job loss, or medical issues, could mean slowing down or stopping extra debt payments all together. If you’re single, this would definitely require you to stop making extra debt payments. But, if you have another income to rely on, it’s possible that this wouldn’t be the case.

My suggestion for any unexpected life events, is to stop extra debt payments and hoard any extra money. The reason this is important is because there is so much unknown in these events, for example, the recent government shutdown. Anyone who experienced the shutdown knows that the end is unknown. This means that you don’t know when you will be paid.

This is why it is important to stack any money you have coming in, even if you have a bit extra at any given time to throw at debt. That extra money will be there once you get through this unexpected event. Once things have settled down, then you can assess your finances and make an extra debt payment.

2. Any unknowns in the future could slow down your debt payments.

If you’re unsure about things in the future, you may want to consider slowing down or stopping your debt payments. This could be something like your job security being unknown, you may want to stop making payments or at least slow down.

This could also be something that you’re planning to do. For example, I am right now unsure of where I’ll be working and am planning to move this year. So, I am not stopping my extra debt payments, but I am slowing it down to put more money into my emergency fund to plan for it. This way I will have extra money to cover the unknowns of the second half of this year. Once things get settled for me, I can assess my finances and make an extra debt payment.

It is more important to plan for these unknowns when you know they are coming, then to simply hope things go according to plan. Hopefully the money you save up won’t be needed, but in the event that it is needed, it will be nice to have.

3. Needing to cash flow necessary expenses.

Life happens and sometimes you need to purchase things that wasn’t planned for, think car or house problems. It is better to slow down or stop debt payments to cash flow the purchase, then to go into more debt to purchase something. It’s pretty counter productive to being sending extra money to debt, but going into debt at the same time.

One way to avoid this is to cash flow the expense, meaning you send all extra money until you have the cash saved up for the purchase. If it is an expense that won’t be needed for a while, you can also start a sinking fund for it.

Everyone is different and decides what is considered a necessary expense, but it’s important not to go into debt for these things, if it can be avoided.

Keep in mind your long term goals when planning your debt free journey

Everyone wants to get out of debt quickly, but life happens and sometimes our plans don’t work out. It’s important to remember what you have planned for the long term, then to make extra debt payments. Sometimes, it makes much more sense to slow down or stop extra debt payments to get through a specific situation life has thrown at you. Just remind yourself of your long term goals in these situations. Have you had to stop or slow down extra debt payments?


Why You Need to Stop Making Blind Loan Payments

Why You Need to Stop Making Blind Loan PaymentsThis post may contain affiliate links. Check out my Disclosure Policy for more information.

There are so many terms with student loan payments and really anything financial. The real tricky part is usually a Google search doesn’t even really help you, at least not quickly. Most of the time, you need to have some background knowledge about student loan payments to navigate your way through the answers.

Unfortunately, this is why you hear stories all the time about people borrowing X amount of student loans and now owe 3X after making all their loan payments on time. The world of debt and student loans is scary misleading and filled with unknowns, if you don’t understand the small print.

That’s why I’m writing about this. I don’t want there to be any more stories like the one I shared above. I don’t want people signing up for different payment plans or forbearance or deferment and not knowing the whole picture. These plans all have significant implications to your financial future and need to be carefully considered from every single angle.

The main reason we hear those stories is because people sign up for forbearance, deferment, income driven repayment plans, or something of the like. These are usually offered when a person can’t make their minimum payment and a lot of times are used to solve a problem quickly. However, I caution you to use these quick fix options for your loan payments because they carry major consequences in the long run.

Student Loan Forbearance & Deferment

Student loan forbearance and deferment can be requested when minimum loan payments can’t be made. It can be used as a fix to avoid default on your loans. However, you may be responsible for all interest that accrues on your loans during the time of forbearance or deferment. You will need to find out the details from your loan provider to find out how it works for your situation.

It is super important to find out what happens with your interest during the time you are in forbearance or deferment. The reason this is so important is because if you are responsible, then you will either pay it each month, or it will be capitalized at the end. What this means is that your interest will be added to your principal, ultimately making your student loans larger.

If your interest will be capitalized at the end, this will increase your principal and interest will accrue on your new principal balance. This increases your monthly interest amount because more interest will accrue each day. This ultimately will make it even more difficult to pay off your student loans in the long run.

Income Driven Repayment Plans

If you have the option to do an income driven repayment plan, it can be an option to be considered, but you need to be sure you understand the implications of it. Every plan is different and you need to make sure that you follow your plan exactly and find out exactly what this plan means in the long run.

Some plans allow you to be on a plan for 10 years and after all on time payments, the rest is forgiven. However, this means that you will have a payment for 10 years and if your income increases significantly, you will need to have a minimum payment that reflects that.

The other issue with income driven repayment plans is that most plans do not pay off the interest each month. Your interest will capitalize and your student loan principal will get bigger, similar to what I explained with deferment and forbearance. This needs to be carefully used because it can end up costing you so much more down the road.

However, income driven repayment plans can be used as a great tool. I currently have my federal student loans in one while I pay off my private loans. The reason I did this is because my minimum payments were going to be $600 and my loans accrue about $300 in interest every month. Even though my payment currently is $250, I always make sure to pay off the interest on them while I focus on paying off my private loans. This allows me to pay off my private loans faster and keep my federal loans from getting larger.


Refinancing your student loans can be a great tool to use, especially if you are struggling to make your payments each month. Of course, you need to make sure you understand the implications of refinancing though. If you need help deciding if refinancing is for you, I wrote a post that walks you through deciding, you can find it here.

Typically when you refinance you are changing something about the terms of your loan. The principal is staying the same, but your length and interest rate is typically changing, which changes your minimum payment.

If your credit score and salary has increased significantly since you took out your original private loan, I think it’s a great idea to look into refinancing. The reason being that chances are you will qualify for a better interest rate, which may lower your payment each month and total amount you pay in the long run.

For example, I refinanced my private student loans to save me money in interest. I did this by lowering my interest rate, shortening the life of my loan, and increasing my minimum monthly payment. Refinancing can be a great tool to save money in interest when done properly. I refinanced with Earnest and recommend them, if you would like to refinance your loans, you’ll get $200 with my referral link when you qualify!

However, with refinancing you need to be careful that you don’t end up adding more to what you are going to have to pay in the long run in interest. If you need to lower your monthly payment, this may be an option for you, just know that you may increase the amount you pay throughout the life of your loan.

Changing habits, tracking expenses, and budgeting may be a better option when you can’t make your loan payments.

These are all options when you can’t afford your monthly payment, but they all carry some pretty signifiant baggage that can hurt you financially in the long run. I highly suggest reflecting on your spending habits, tracking your expenses, maybe adding a side job and getting on a budget instead of utilizing some of these to lower your payment. If you need help setting up a budget, I have a template for you! The reason I suggest this is because you will allow yourself to change your financial future in a positive way by doing this. By utilizing some of these, you potentially hurt your financial future. I want to hear from you! What are your thoughts on these student loan programs?




$34k of Debt Paid off in 2018

$34k of Debt Paid off in 2018

This post may contain affiliate links. Check out my Disclosure Policy for more information.

I may be the only one that feels this way, but 2018 flew by. I feel like I was just ringing in 2018 and here we are in 2019 already. Where did the time go?? 2018 was a crazy year with lots of changes in my finances.

I went into the year with intense focus to pay off my debt as fast as possible. I made huge sacrifices and worked lots of side jobs to try to get my debt free date to be closer and closer. That was my plan for 2019, until June when my car once again had issues that needed to be fixed.

I switched gears and started cash flowing for a new to me car because my car had so many issues in warranty that I was nervous to keep it out of warranty. All of those costs would have fallen on me once it was out of warranty. So, I spent a few months cash flowing to that fund and paid minimums on my debt.

Then I realized that instead of getting a new to me car, I would just keep this as a car sinking fund and keep my car for as long as I could. This has so far worked out really well for me. I have a large sinking fund that I have already used a few times to fix my car.

I ended the year back in hyper focus to pay off my debt. In November, I hit my 3 year date of being on my debt free journey and managed to pay off $105k on my teaching salary. I added side jobs and have been working diligently to increase my income to pay off my debt as fast as possible. My debt holds me back from so much and I can’t wait until it no longer prevents me from doing things. I also finally wrote my ebook in 2018 that outlines how to master your finances as a twenty something, I share all my tips and tricks in it!

The things I did to pay off so much debt in 2018

If you’ve been following my journey, then you know that I have had the same salary from my teaching job since 2016. It’s hard to be on a debt free journey and not have your main source of income even come close to matching the rate of inflation. Fortunately, I didn’t let this stop me. I decided to work a before and after school program to supplement my income.

Yes, this takes away from my own time and extends my school day, but it’s worth it when it’s adding a significant amount to my income. This does take away time from my side hustles and free time, but I know that this is all temporary.

Also, I have been slowly decluttering my space and selling the things that are worth it. It’s not much, but it has added up to about $300 total. Of course, I continue to work my side jobs of tutoring and babysitting, I really committed to babysitting this year and it has definitely paid off.

One of the biggest moves I made was refinancing my high interest private student loans from 7% to 4.97%. My monthly minimum payment increased, but the amount I will pay in interest decreased. If you’re considering refinancing, check out my post that outlines how you can make the decision if it’s right for you!

My plan for 2019 to pay off debt

2019 is going to be such an exciting year for me, I can’t wait to see where it takes me. I am planning to do everything I can to lower my expenses and increase my income until June. I’ll do this by following a strict budget, you can find the template I use here. My goal is to get as close to paying off my private loans as I can before July.

The reality is that I won’t be able to completely pay off this loan before July, the numbers just don’t add up. But, I want to get as close as possible because I am planning to move out in July and my private loans carry a hefty $865/month minimum payment. If I can get this out of my budget, it will make it much more affordable to move out.

Also, I am planning to find a new job in June and I can’t wait to see where that takes me. I’m so excited to start something new and see what I can do in a new role. This also means that I have so many things in my budget that are totally up in the air once July hits. Normally, this would totally freak me out, but I’m so excited for it!

The first 6 months of 2019 will be all about sticking to a very tight budget and sending all extra money to my debt. I plan to find more ways to increase my income, declutter my space to prepare to move out, and enjoy every minute of this year making memories with loved ones. What do you plan to accomplish in 2019?


A Honest Review: Round Up To Zero

A Honest Review_ Round Up To Zero

This post may contain affiliate links. Check out my Disclosure Policy for more information.

Student loans are something that most people have to deal with directly, or know someone close to them that is dealing with them. Without a solid plan, student loans can seem daunting and overwhelming. I know I felt like I was drowning when I faced my $200k in student loans. But, with a solid plan I managed to pay off $105k in 3 years.

Luckily there are so much tools out there now that is encouraging student loan plans that allow you to get out of debt faster. One of those tools that I have recently found is Round Up To Zero, which allows you to round up your purchases to the nearest dollar and then make a student loan payment with the money.

The company is pretty awesome and is made up of people that have dealt with student loans. They created this platform because they wanted to do something to help other people get out of student loan debt.

How Round Up To Zero Works

After you create your account, you’ll connect your bank accounts and student loan accounts to the platform. Basically how it works is that they will round up all of your purchases to the next dollar. That money will get added to your account and eventually be transferred to your student loan. The platform allows you to play around to see how much extra payments will impact your pay off date and interest paid.

What is really cool and unique about this platform is that they let you connect other people to your account. This allows you to pay off your loan faster. Basically what happens is that your purchases and their purchases will get rounded up. The more people you add, the more money will get rounded up and applied to your student loans.

There is a fee that comes with using this service. Right now, they are charging 0.99/month to use the platform. Also, there is a transaction fee of 4.97% of the transaction. These fees cover the banking fees that the company gets charged for completing these transactions for you. Round Up To Zero hopes to make this service free eventually.

You’re able to set limits on how much extra is applied to your debt each month, if you want. For example, if you’re someone that has a zero based budget, you can set the limit you want to go to your debt.


My Opinion of Round Up To Zero

Personally, I think the platform is really well designed and easy to use. The people behind the platform are incredible and have the desire to help people get out of student loan debt. I will support most companies that are trying to help people get out of student loan debt, since I am dealing with them myself.

With that being said, I’m not the biggest fan of charging the fees, but I do understand why they are there. Round Up To Zero would have to foot all the transaction charges that they get without having the fees. That just isn’t realistic. I do appreciate that their ultimate goal is to make the platform free to use eventually.

Who Round Up To Zero is for

Round Up To Zero is perfect for someone that wants to effortlessly pay extra on their debt. If you are just starting to think about applying extra to your debt, this may be a platform to look into. This platform would be great for someone that is overwhelmed by their debt, and can afford to pay a little extra each month. It also would be great for people that have family or friends that want to help you pay off your debt.

I wouldn’t recommend this for someone that is already budgeting strictly and is putting extra money to their debt. If you are doing what the platform provides already, there is no reason to use this service. Some options for you would be to utilize undebt.it to plan your payoff strategy, or consider refinancing your loans to get a better rate.

Overall, I think Round Up To Zero is a great platform for a specific group of people. I love the company’s goal of helping people get out of student loan debt and I think they have created a platform to do this. How do you plan to pay off your student loans?


The Habits You Should Continue to Remain Debt Free

The Habits You Should Continue to Remain Debt FreeThis is a guest post written by Good Nelly, founder of My Way Of Viewing, check her out for tips on all things personal finance.

Paid off debts? What habits should you continue to remain debt free?

It requires no mention that life without debt is what we all want to achieve. No one of us want to be in debt. There are so many things to do in life than wasting your precious time worrying about how to pay off debt.

But, what happens when you pay off all your debt… Do you go back to your old habits and routine which led you to debt? No!

On the contrary, when you have finally been successful of getting out debt, don’t leave any stone unturned to put debt away from your life.

Few debts you should always avoid are credit card debt, payday loan debt, personal loan debt, and so on. However, you can take out a mortgage or an auto loan but make sure you manage them efficiently.

Here are a few habits which you should continue or develop to keep debts at bay.

Revisit your budget and make modifications

Instead of thinking ‘budget’ a thing that existed in the past and you no longer need it, revisit your budget and make modifications. I won’t attach the line ‘if required’ because most likely, you need to make modifications from time to time and it’s not a one-time affair. Then only, you’ll be able to manage your financial life the way you want.

First of all, revisit your budget at least once in three months to be sure that everything is working in your favor. However, if you’re expecting any financial change, then I would suggest that you revisit your budget every month.

Making even minute changes can help you follow it and at the same time, help you attain your financial goals.

Carefully examine what and how much you’re spending

You were compelled to change your spending behavior to clear your debt. Continue that habit. I would say that now you should scrutinize it even more since you’ll have to get back on track and build a good financial future.

So, stop splurging your hard-earned dollars and maintain strict vigilance on what and how much you’re spending. Curb your desire for spending since you have some liquid money after a long time.

However, celebrate occasionally but not spend more. And, when you want to spend on something, think and plan it carefully.

Allocate a significant amount towards achieving your financial goals

If you look this way, you have wasted a few years struggling to pay off debt and not able to pay attention to achieve your financial goals. So, now devote time and save a significant amount to attain your short-term and long-term monetary goals.

You should deposit an amount into your retirement fund, buy a house if you don’t have one, save for your children’s education if required, and plan for your financial future.

Also, have an emergency fund if you don’t have one. It may help you avoid falling into debt in the future.

Continue checking your credit reports at regular intervals

The financial advisers always say to check your credit reports at least once a year even when you’re into debt and you know that there are negative listings in your report.

However, keep this habit as you can dispute inaccurate negative lists, if any, which can reduce your score. Pull your three major credit reports, which is usually free of cost, once a year.

Make sure the spelling of your name, your address, and other important personal details are accurate in the credit reports.

Manage your credit card accounts and don’t close them

Paying off credit card debt is a bit tough since you have to deal with relatively high-interest debts. So, when you pay off debt, make sure it doesn’t come back again.

So, what habits will you follow even after you pay off all your debts?

Do not make the mistake of closing your credit card accounts, especially the oldest one. The length of your credit history is an important component of your credit score. Another thing, when you close a credit card, your credit limit decreases, thus increasing your credit utilization ratio.

Therefore, keep the habit of managing your credit cards by paying back the outstanding balance at every billing cycle.

Above all, make a promise not to fall into debt again!

Do you know the most important habit which you should continue? Just as you promised yourself to get out of debt, now, make a promise every day not to fall into debt again.

Believe me, it will help you make the necessary decisions and maintain certain habits to achieve it.

You make certain rules to follow like:

  • Not spending above a certain amount during weekdays
  • Allot a certain amount, to spend during the weekends, beyond which you won’t spend. This will help you to enjoy but within your limit.

One important piece of information:

If you can foresee that you’re about to experience a financial hardship, inform your creditors beforehand. For example, if you guess that you can be laid off, inform your creditors instead of waiting for that to happen.

When you inform a credit card company about your situation, it can reduce the interest rate temporarily. It may also extend your payment deadline so that you have some time to make the payment.

So, maintain these habits, have faith in your decisions, and a enjoy a debt free life!

Good Nelly analyzes financial happenings and writes articles to aware and help her readers plan for their financial future. You can go through her blog My Way Of Viewing. She has been associated with Debt Consolidation Care for a long time. However, she has contributed her articles to other websites, too. Be sure to follow her on Facebook, Twitter, and G+.


How to Pay Off Debt on a Low Income

How to Pay Off Debt on a Low IncomeThis post may contain affiliate links. Check out my Disclosure Policy for more information.

When you search the internet for debt pay off motivation, it can be a wonderful motivator or it can quickly turn into wasted time filled with, “I’ll never be able to do that.” This was definitely me when I first started my debt free journey in 2015 with $201k in student loan debt and living on a teacher’s salary.

At first, I had plans to get my first apartment after college and find a teaching job in the area. That dream was quickly shut down when I had the harsh reality that my teaching income wouldn’t be able to support my $2,000/month minimum student loan payment and living. I figured I’d never pay that off early and just make that payment for the rest of my life basically.

That’s when I started getting really angry about my debt and realized that I’d never be able to do anything with that large of a monthly payment. I knew I needed to create some sort of plan to get out of debt and I’m sharing with you my exact steps that I took when it seemed impossible to pay off my debt on my low income.

Step #1: Create a budget.

This is crucial if you haven’t done this already. When I made my budget, I realized that my low income couldn’t support my loan payments and the cost of living in New Jersey. If I hadn’t done this, I most likely would have moved into an apartment, I couldn’t afford, because that’s what the plan was. Go to college, get a teaching job and get my first apartment.

By creating my budget, I quickly realized my expenses would be way more than my teaching income. This made me tweak my entire plan and led me to complete step #2. You can get my budgeting template here!

Step #2: Cut your expenses.

Once you have your budget, you need to cut any expenses that you can quickly and easily. I recommend doing anything that won’t change your lifestyle first. The reason I say this is because you want to create new habits and if you try to cut everything at once, you’re going to hate this process. Once you have cut the easy expenses, start trimming down what’s left slowly. Cut your grocery budget a little bit at a time and see how low you can go. Little changes you make slowly will add up.

The quickest and sometimes easiest way to cut expenses is to find ways to cut down your spending in necessary categories. For example, rent in New Jersey is outrageous, so I moved back home with my parents. This was a quick way to cut a large expense from my budget. Yes, as a 20-something I’d love to be living in my own place, but that just wasn’t an option for me when I had so much student loan debt and a low income. Especially since I was a 10 month employee, so I’d have no income from my teaching job in the summer months.

This obviously isn’t an option for everyone, but my point is to find ways to cut those expenses that you need to make. Maybe get a roommate, downsize, or move to an area with a lower cost of living. These kinds of cuts will make major impact on your budget each month.

Step #3: Create a debt payoff plan.

There are plenty of ways to create a debt payoff plan, you can use a spreadsheet and create it yourself, or you can use a website, like undebt.it to create a plan for you. I personally used undebt.it because it does the work for me and I’m all about saving time. This website allows you to input all of your debt information and has you input any additional payments you can make. This allows you to see how much an extra payment can impact your debt pay off date and interest saved.

You need to decide what pay off plan you’re going to go with. The 2 most popular are the debt snowball and debt avalanche, but there is also one other one that I am currently using. The important part of any plan is that you are focusing on one account at a time while paying minimums on the other. If you have a lower income, I suggest you use the plan that I am currently using to free up money faster.

This step is what really motivated me to get serious about my debt pay off. When I saw how much time and money I was wasting to interest, if I didn’t make extra payments, I knew I needed to get this gone ASAP. This motivated me to keep cutting my expenses and to do step #4.

Step #4: Add side job(s) and earn cash back on required expenses.

When you have a lower income from your day job, it can feel like you’ll never pay off your debt. There just isn’t enough money left over at the end of the month, even when you cut your expenses as low as you can. By adding a side job or jobs, you can increase your income and allow that entire income to go straight to your debt. Side jobs have been a major help in me being able to pay off $105k in 3 years on my teacher salary. My salary from teaching hasn’t increased since 2016, but my side job income can increase easily if I choose to work more. Depending on how much I have going on with school, I work more or less.

I also use different apps for cash back on my groceries and toiletries. My favorite is Ibotta, this app allows you to take a picture of your receipt and earn cash back on the purchases that qualify. Using my link gets you $10 when you scan your first receipt!

Step #5: Sell everything.

I was shocked by how much stuff I had sitting around my house that I wasn’t using. I’ve held garage sales, sold on Poshmark, sold my textbooks on SellBackYourBook, and dabbled with Facebook Marketplace. All the money made can go to your debt payoff and it feels great to get rid of things you aren’t using anymore.

Remember: As long as you aren’t adding any new debt, you’re still moving forward.

Debt payoff is hard, there is no doubt about that. When you are inching forward slowly, it can seem like you’re never going to get out of debt. As long as you don’t add new debt, you are still moving forward though. That’s what is important to remember, if you aren’t adding any new debt, it is still moving forward. I put together all of my tips and tricks to mastering your finances as a twenty something into an ebookHow have you paid off debt on a low income?