8 Tips to Pay off Debt

1. Ask This Website to Pay Your Credit Card Bill This Month

No, like… the whole bill. All of it. All that debt racked up from the 300 destination weddings your friends made you attend (thanks!) could be paid by the end of this month.

Your credit card company is ripping you off with insane rates, and it’s getting rich off of you. But there are other, nicer companies that’ll help you out. A website called Fiona knows the best ones and could pair you up as soon as tomorrow. 

Here’s how it works: Fiona will match you with a loan that’ll cover your credit card tab. Use that loan to pay off your debt, then make monthly payments to repay the loan. It could lower your monthly payments and help you pay off that debt a lot faster. Plus, no credit card payment this month. 

Fiona won’t make you stand in line or call a bank. And if you’re worried you won’t qualify, it’s free to check online. It takes just two minutes, and it could save you thousands of dollars. Totally worth it.

Now you can finally stop holding a grudge against that friend who thought a Mexico wedding was a good idea.

2. Stop Giving Your Car Insurance Company an Extra $865

Have you been paying your car insurance bill to the same old insurance company for years? You’re probably paying too much.

Over the years, your life has probably changed — and so has the value of your car. Plus, insurance companies you might have looked at years ago are constantly changing their pricing. One easy way to save on car insurance is by shopping and comparing rates twice a year. But that sounds like a pain.

Fortunately, a service called Gabi will do it for you, and you don’t even have to fill out any forms. Simply link your insurance account and provide your driver’s license number, and it’ll go to work.

Gabi says it finds an average savings of $865 per year for its customers.

It offers a true apples-to-apples comparison at the same coverage levels and deductibles you currently have, and instantly compares rates from up to 20 providers to find you the best deal. Once you sign up, you never have to shop again. Gabi’s software has your policy on file and keeps on monitoring for savings as your life changes.

3. Search for Unclaimed Money

State treasuries throughout the U.S. have more than $43 billion in unclaimed funds, according to The New York Times. Just sitting around! Waiting for you to come play lost and found.

In 2017, one South Carolina man hit the jackpot. He got a phone call from his state treasurer letting him know he was entitled to $763,000 in unclaimed money. That’s, like, 63 years of rent.

We advise you to be careful of calls like this; they could be scams. But you can take matters into your own hands and see if you have any unclaimed money floating around.

Check with the National Association of Unclaimed Property Administrators. Click your state on the map, and it’ll redirect you to your state’s appropriate search site. (Beware: There are several look-a-like sites out there. Be sure you’re searching legitimate ones.)

Penny Hoarder reader Kelli Howell heeded our advice, performed a quick search, and found unclaimed money in her husband’s name.

“As I was scrolling through, I saw his name and his middle initial,” she says. She asked him to confirm his old Florida address; he grew up in Tampa. Sure enough, Mark Howell was entitled to $56 from a “matured insurance policy.”

Kelli immediately searched her other family members’ names. Her husband was the only who had any money to claim. And, sure, it’s $56, but that’s not bad for an unexpected check, right? We’ll take it!

4. See If Your Cell Phone Company Owes You $80

Is your cell phone company overcharging you?

Probably. In fact, there are secret discounts it doesn’t want you to know about. 

You can find out how much you’re overpaying by signing up for Trim. Just connect your cell phone account and Trim will handle the rest.

William Ellis, a savvy saver from Indiana, was able to get $80 a year back in his pocket when Trim convinced Sprint to lower his bill — for the same plan. He didn’t even have to pick up the phone.

Trim takes an upfront commission on any money it recovers for you, but there’s no charge if it’s not successful. Last month, Trim saved its users more than $1 million.

5. Earn up to $22/Hour Picking up Milk For Your Neighbors

You’ve probably heard you can make money picking up other people’s groceries. But doing your own shopping is stressful enough. You just learned where everything is — now you’re supposed to learn the aisles of a different store?

But an app called Shipt will pay you up to $22 an hour to pick up a few extra groceries while you’re already picking up your own. 

We talked to one shopper, Destiny Frith, from Nashville, who says the flexibility and high hourly pay makes this a great way to make extra money.

She takes home close to $600 a week — working completely on her own schedule. 

Just sign up online (the application is pretty simple). Once you’re approved, pick which jobs you want to take, and Shipt will send you a prepaid card to buy the groceries and deliver them to customers. 

Suddenly grocery shopping isn’t so bad, is it?

6. Stop Deleting Your Emails

It turns out deleting your emails could be costing you money. Intrigued?

One of our secret weapons is called Paribus — a tool that gets you money back for your online purchases. It’s free to sign up, and once you do, it will scan your email for any receipts. If it discovers you’ve purchased something from one of its monitored retailers, it will track the item’s price and help you get a refund when there’s a price drop.

Plus, if your guaranteed shipment shows up late, Paribus will help you get compensated.

Disclosure: Paribus compensates us when you sign up using the links we provide.

7. Withdraw Cash From the ATM on Monday

There are always those weeks — the ones where you promise you’ll pack a lunch for work then end up eating out each day.

Now, we’re not saying only eat soggy leftovers all week. But if you have trouble staying on track — whether it’s coffee, lunch, dinner or all the snacks — set yourself a spending limit and take exactly that amount from the ATM on Monday. Then, only spend that throughout the week. Once the cash is gone, it’s back to leftovers.

Don’t stress about debt — we’ve got your back! Get great ideas delivered straight to your inbox in The Penny Hoarder Daily.Email

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8. Use Your House to Pay Off Credit Card Debt

Homeowners: Did you know your home, even if it’s not paid off yet, could help you escape credit card debt?

You might consider tapping into your home’s equity — that’s the money you’ve paid toward your mortgage — through a lender like Figure. The idea is to borrow money from your home’s equity to pay your credit bard balance in full.

This might feel like you’re simply transferring your debt, but you’ll wipe out those high interest rates (the average these days is 17.14%, according to the Federal Reserve), which will get you on a faster track to that debt-free life.

First, decide if a home-equity line of credit is right for you. You’ll be using your home as collateral, but your new interest rate will be much lower than that of your credit card.

Then, get a free quote from Figure. You can borrow up to $150,000, with rates starting at 4.99%.

And, unlike some other lenders, Figure doesn’t slap you with sneaky fees. You’ll pay an origination fee (typical), but you won’t be charged application fees or even early repayment fees.

It takes five minutes to check your rate. If you like what you see and your application is approved, Figure will fund you within five days.

Terms and conditions apply. Visit figure.com for further information.

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