Creative Ways to Pay Off Debt

  • By Jillian Taylor-Mancusi


If your debts are beginning to pile up, now is the time to develop a personal debt reduction plan. Budgeting and putting credit cards away for a while are all important parts of a good debt reduction plan, and they are easy to implement. But if you are like most of us, finding the cash to reduce credit card and other debt can be a little more difficult. If you need to pay off debt, consider some of these creative ways to bring down your balances.

Bump up your income

One of the easiest ways to increase your bank balance is to get a second job. However, before you start hunting for the perfect part-time job, check your day job’s moonlighting or second job policy.

Another way to increase your current income is to increase your hours. If you have a part-time job, you may be able to up your availability and qualify for more hours. Full-timers can volunteer for additional projects.

A second job can also be conducted from home. Mary Kay, Avon, and many food, jewelry, or home care product companies offer opportunities to make money while setting your own goals and schedule. If you enjoy talking about these special interest items with friends and neighbours, you may be able to make a significant contribution to your debt reduction piggy bank.

Be a Small-scale Entrepreneur

You can add to your income by marketing your skills, or by providing a service that others need. Don’t be intimidated by the thought of starting your own business. Small scale business opportunities don’t require a huge bank account or expensive advertising budgets.

The simplest way to start earning extra income is to provide a service to others that you already provide for yourself. Are you the only stay-at-home parent on the block? Consider offering after-school day care or specialty care for infants or sick kids. Do you have the loveliest yard in your neighbourhood? Providing your services as a garden design and care consultant or a lawn care provider can add enough money to make a significant reduction in your debt load. Animal lovers can offer in-home day or vacation care, or walk neighbourhood dogs.

Other suggestions of services to offer include:

  • Residential painting
  • House cleaning
  • Home organizing
  • Auto detailing

Advertise your services through word of mouth, flyers, or your neighbourhood facebook page.

Create your own job

If you’re tech-savvy, using a computer, tablet, or smart phone is probably second nature to you, but for many they are confusing and difficult to use. If you know your way around emerging technology, you can help others make the best use of their tech appliances. Repairing electronic devices or assisting in setup are just two services that you can provide. Programmers, graphic artists, and photo editors also have special skills that are very marketable.

With a little creativity, your special skills can be a valuable tool in your plan to pay off your debt.

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