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3 Simple Ways To Pad Your Income During The Holidays

3 Simple Ways To Pad Your Income During The Holidays

The holidays can be a tough time for a lot of families, particularly if they are celebrating Christmas. Kids love Christmas, but a large part of that comes from getting presents. Sadly, many people can’t afford to give their kids what they would like, or what other kids are getting. In these situations, the holidays can become a stressful time of trying to find affordable gifts for younger kids who simply don’t understand the lack of finances. This can take a lot of joy out of what should be a time of making memories with family.

Fortunately, there are quite a few opportunities to increase income during the holidays. Some of them can be done from home and don’t require a lot of time. Here are a few examples.

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Apps

Most people don’t realize just how much money something as simple as data is worth. Fortunately, companies do realize this and they are willing to pay for it. There are quite a few apps that will actually pay people just to keep the app on their phone. The app is not sitting dormant. It is gathering data about the user. This information includes apps that are downloaded, how often the phone is used, it’s location and more.

If you are a privacy fanatic, this is probably not for you. If you don’t care that a company knows where you travel and what kinds of stuff you do on your phone, this is a great way to make money now. Since they often pay each month you keep the app on, this could even turn into recurring income. Here is a list of apps that will offer various incentives for doing as little as simply keeping the app on your phone.

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Rideshare

There are actually multiple ways to make money with ride-sharing apps like Lyft and Uber. The most obvious one is to use them for what they’re designed to do. These apps connect people that are looking for rides, have a little time and could use a little money. Essentially you can become a taxi driver without all the paperwork and hassle. You can also work whatever hours you choose.

The other way to make money from these programs is called rideshare referrals. You can get paid quite a bit just to refer people to programs like Lyft and Uber! Something as small as posting a link on your social media account telling your friends to sign up to drive can earn cash from these referral programs.

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Open a new credit card or checking account

These aren’t long-term options, but they’re great for the holidays! Many banks will offer pretty decent incentives for opening a checking or savings account. Chase, for example, will offer $200 if you open a new checking account and set it up with direct deposit. Obviously, this is a hack that you can only use once, but if you just need enough money to buy a gift for a child these bonuses can hit the spot perfectly. Credit cards are a little harder because they often require spending limits before receiving the bonus. There are ways, however, such as buying a few months of groceries, paying ahead on insurance, etc.

These are just a few tips and tricks to make money during the holidays. Remember one important thing and take some stress out of the occasion. The holidays are meant for family, and gift-giving can always take a backseat to spending time together. If the choice must be made between seeing a child and getting them an expensive gift, many children would prefer to spend time with their parents.

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Last Updated on April 3, 2019

How to Nix Your Credit Card Debt in Less Than 3 Years

How to Nix Your Credit Card Debt in Less Than 3 Years

Debt is never a fun thing to be in. But, there are many actions that you can take that will help you rid yourself of the burden of debt once and for all.

By coming up with a set plan, eliminating your debt can feel much easier than constantly thinking about it.

This post will provide some tips on how you can do this to help you nix your credit card debt in less than 3 years.

Hint: there are ways that are easier than you think.

1. Consider Consolidating Multiple Credit Cards If Possible

This may not be applicable to you, but if you have multiple cards – it is something to consider. Keeping up with multiple bills is time consuming.

It will depend on the balance you have on each. Consolidate ones you can but do not do it to the point that you get too close to the maximum limit. Also, it is ideal to pick the card with the lower interest rate.

Consider if there are any fees or alternatively, rewards, with transferring a balance to another card. Watch out for fees. Note that some cards offer rewards for transferring a balance to them. This is extra cash that can help go towards paying off your debt.

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Having one or two cards can make nixing your debt much simpler than keeping up with the balance of a bunch of cards. Keeping track of paying the minimum towards a bunch of cards is time consuming. Spend the time to consolidate instead to make the overall process simpler going forward.

My tip: Have one main credit card. Have a second one that you use for necessities – such as groceries or gas – that offers rewards for those purchases (a lot of cards do) and set the second one on auto-pay. You should be able to pay off a smaller amount on auto-pay if it is a necessity. If you think you cannot, then you may need to cut down a lot on expenses.

Why do I suggest doing this? Having one thing set to auto-pay is one less thing to think about. One less thing to waste time on. Same idea with consolidating to one main card. Tracking down too many is a hassle.

2. Try to Pay the Full Balance You Spent Each Month at the Very Least

You need to pay off the amount you are spending each month when that bill comes in. This is the amount you spent THAT month.

Do not let the debt keep accruing while you work on paying any unpaid debt that has accrued. It will become a never-ending battle. Try as best as you can to be current on paying for each month’s expenses when that month’s bill comes out.

If this is a strain, consider why. You may need to cut expenses. Or you may need to consider other cards. Or look at where this money is going.

3. Pay Extra When You Can – Every Small Amount Counts

This cannot be emphasized enough. If you are looking at a lot of credit card debt, it can look daunting, but each extra amount that you can put towards the debt will really add up – no matter how small it is.

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It does not just reduce the principal amount that you have left to pay off, but it reduces the amount that is collecting interest. You will always save money with that reduced interest.

4. Create a Plan on How to Pay Extra

Back to the main point, having this plan is giving you one less thing to think about.

This plan should be a plan that works for you. If it does not work for you, your spending habits, and your views on debt, then it will not be an effective plan.

For instance, if a set plan of an extra $50 (or another amount that you know you can afford) works for you, then do that. Set that aside every month and pay that extra amount. Treat it like a bill. Choose an amount that works for you and pay it like clockwork as though it was a bill you had to pay each month.

Little amounts will not nix it entirely, but they will help tackle it and having a set plan can make it less of a chore. Creating a new plan of how much to put towards it each month is an unnecessary added stress.

5. Cut out Costs for Services You Do Not Use

If you are signed up for subscriptions that you do not use because of some free trial or for some other reason, cut it out. Your overall financial position will look better.

In turn, that will make cutting your credit card debt easier. Look at your statements to find these expenses. If you do not use them, you may forget you are paying some unnecessary amount each month. Cutting it out can really add up in savings that you can put towards other needed expenses.

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6. Get Aggressive About It

Consider these points:

Depending on the interest and the level of debt, you may need to give up a few indulgences. For example, instead of ordering delivery or going out to eat, cook at home. Everything adds up.

Other things may be more of a sacrifice. It may be a trip you wanted to go on, or a daily latte habit you’ve picked up. In these instances, consider how important it is to you and if it’s worth the sacrifice. And if it is a costly expense, think whether you can wait to indulge.

Cutting an extravagant expense can really help make a dent in your overall debt. Try not to add to debt when you are trying to pay it off. It will be a never-ending battle. Make it less of a battle with these tips and it will feel easier.

Bottom line: Do what you can to make this process easier for you. Implement steps that do this. It takes time now, but will help overall. Also, keep track of your spending and paying down of your debts. Which is the next point.

7. Reevaluate Your Progress at Set Intervals

Doing a regular check-in can help you see your efforts pay off or maybe indicate that you need to give this a bit more effort. If you check every 3-6 months, it will not feel so much like a chore or feel so daunting.

By doing this, you will be able to better understand your progress and perhaps readjust your plan. Bonus: if you see it pay off, it will feel great to do this check-in. You will get there.

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Finally (and most importantly)…

8. Keep Trying

Do not get discouraged. Pushing it off will make it worse. Just keep trying.

Once your debt becomes lower, each monthly payment will reduce the balance more. Why? You are paying less towards interest. It will be a snowball effect eventually and it will become much easier to manage. Just get to that point. And know once you do, it will feel easier and motivating.

Start Knocking out Your Debt Today

The best way to eliminate debt is to get started right away. Begin by implementing the above steps and watch your debt just melt away. Try out some of the above strategies and see what works best for you. Soon you’ll be on your way to a debt free life.

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Featured photo credit: Pexels via pexels.com

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