While paying off debt can be difficult, it is so important that you tackle it now and get rid of it forever. Right now the economy is better than it was in late 2008 and into 2009. People are spending money again. Unemployment rates are low. Salaries are increasing. Real estate is booming. Car sales are up. Interest rates are still low.
People are becoming more optimistic about their future. They want to rebuild their savings account and put money away for their retirement.
But how long will all of these aspects of a good economy last? Another year? Another 5 years?
We all know that at some point history repeats itself, and because of that we all need to be prepared. And the best way to be prepared is to be debt free.
One of the ways that you can be debt free is by taking advantage of the current economic environment.
You want to find ways to make more money and save more money so that you can then use that money to pay off debt sooner rather than later.
8 Ways to Pay Off Debt Now
Take advantage of the current Real Estate market and sell your house. Real Estate is booming right now and if you sell your house and downsize the money that you earn from the sale of your house can pay off debt. And once you downsize your monthly payments will be lower too. The extra money you save each month can also go towards your debt.
Sell Your New Car
Are you driving a brand new vehicle and making monthly payments on it? Okay, so you were drawn in by the new car smell, the latest cool designs and the low interest rates.
But if you are making monthly payments just so you can drive a new car, you are in debt, and will be in debt for the next several years, until the car is paid off. Instead, sell it now and get the highest price possible for it. Remember other people are spending their money again.
Let them go into debt to buy your car, and then you can be debt free.
Ask for a Raise
Companies are seeing a huge increase in sales. All around you prices are going up and businesses are making more money. Isn’t time you ask your boss for a raise?
When you approach your boss have a list of specific examples of how well you do your job and how the company has benefited from having you on staff.
Then ask for a raise.
Use your increase in pay to reduce your debt.
Improve Your Skills
No matter what type of work you currently do there is always room for improvement. Enroll in adult continuing education courses or attend seminars. Work on expanding your professional skills as well as your personal skills.
Look for a Better Paying Job
Now is definitely the time to be looking for a better paying job. Perhaps there are jobs within your company that you have always had your eye on, but were not sure if you were ready for them. Review the requirements and work on developing the skills necessary to apply for those jobs.
Another option is to look for a better paying job at a different company. Quite often climbing the ladder takes forever if you stay with the same company, but you can usually skip a few steps on the ladder by moving to a new company.
Always make sure to negotiate your rate of pay once you are offered a new job. Negotiate before you say yes to the offer.
Earn Extra Cash on the Weekends
If you love your current job, but are still in debt, find ways to make extra cash after hours.
Look for work that you can do on your days off.
Maybe you can bartend on Friday and Saturday nights. Or maybe you have the skills to be a part-time bookkeeper for small businesses.
Consider a retail job, or a warehouse job.
Ask friends and family members for suggestions.
Sell Your Crap
We all accumulate crap. Some of us have more stuff than others. But what is the point of having all this stuff if you are in debt and you are paying more and more interest every month?
Go through your stuff and seriously evaluate how important each item is to you. When was the last time you used it? Will you use it again in the next 6 to 12 months?
How much could you get for your stuff if you sold it in a garage sale?
Or how much could you get for your stuff if you put an ad in the newspaper and sold it?
You will find that if you sell your stuff in a garage sale you will probably get very little for it. The same thing may happen if you try to sell it through one of the online ad sites
However, if you put an ad in your local newspaper to individually sell your items you will get less tire kickers and more buyers that are willing to pay your asking price.
Fire Your Maid
This one is important. If you are in debt you need to fire your maid or housekeeping service.
I know…I know, you are thinking how are you ever going to keep your big house clean on your own, right? Well if your house is so big that it requires a maid, and you are in debt, then guess what; you need to sell and move.
Related: Jumpstart Your Personal Finances
Pay Off Debt
Getting yourself out of debt now, while the economy is good, is very important. A good economy gives you more options, from selling your stuff, to increasing your income. As well, once your debt is paid off you will feel more secure. You will be in a better position to seriously save money first and spend later. You will also be able to save for your retirement without worrying about how much you owe other people. Who knows, you may even save enough money to buy that big house again, but this time you will buy it and still be debt free. Chances are though, that you won’t even miss it.