Browsing Category: Paying Off Debt

The Amazing How to Get Out of Debt Calculator

Every single day I help people for free to find good solutions for problem debt. Not long ago I was talking with some friends and it occurred to me there was no one single tool people could use to better understand all of their options to tackle their debt. Why not?

So in collaboration with the smart technology people at USDR we created just such an online calculator to give people a somewhat personalized side-by-side comparison of the options, costs and payments of the different approaches to eliminate their debt.

We’ve just launched the How to Get Out of Debt Calculator and I think it gives people an impartial and detached view of what they can do to tackle their debt.

The use of the calculator is free and does not require people to share any personal identifying information.

Each option for getting out of debt certainly has plusses and minuses. But through education and awareness each person can make a better choice about the approach that’s right for them.

The calculator is not designed to be the creator of a final plan to implement, in fact we don’t sell any debt relief services at

At what we do is provide information, education, free help and resources for people dealing with debt. This new free online educational tool helps us to further that mission.

The unique online calculator is designed to give people a wider eyed view of the logical solutions available so they can have an educated discussion with any for-profit or non-profit debt relief provider they ultimately choose to work with.

And now, without further fanfare, I invite you to try and enjoy The Amazing How to Get Out of Debt Calculator. I think you’ll find it to be pretty amazing in the distilled education it presents users.

Feel free to link to the How to Get Out of Debt Calculator in an effort to help people better understand their options. Your link to the calculator simply helps us to help people.

And in the interest of educating consumers further I’ve also just recently released another online tool that provides comprehensive information to show consumers the regulation, licensing, and registration required of debt relief companies on a state-by-state basis. It’s yet another free resource available through to protect consumers looking for debt help. You can find links to this in the resource section at

This guest post is by Steve Rhode. Steve is a consumer debt expert that helps people for free to learn about getting out of debt and how to avoid scams. Feel free to report a scam if you know of one.

Source: Introducing The Amazing How to Get Out of Debt Calculator


Our Debt Reduction Strategy

credit card debt reduction

Getting out of debt has been a project we’ve been working on for a couple of years. When I was in college and getting ready for marriage, I realized I wanted to get my credit cards paid off. I focused my attention on earning a bit more and putting it towards the credit cards .  I was determined to get married without having a huge amount of credit card debt over my head. I was happy to accomplish my goal, but there was still more debt to conquer.

Working Together to Reduce Debt credit card debt reduction

After I got married, my husband and I had a plan to pay off the car loan faster. We worked at it and were proud to finish that. Now we’re shopping for a reliable used car for our family and paying cash for it.

Our next debt to tackle is the student loan we consolidated a bit ago. Though the interest rate is low, we really want to improve our monthly cash flow in the long run. This year we’re making regular payments and whatever extra money we make online to reduce the loan further. We’re also sending in a bit of our tax refund to knock it down even more.

Debt Reduction in 3 Steps

If you’re looking at reducing your debt in 2012, here are a few steps you can take:

  • Learn the Exact Amount of Your Debt – Some people think that this goes without saying, but many times people who are deep in debt, don’t know this number. Gather all your statements and add up the total to see how much debt you need to eliminate.
  • Set Up a Payment Plan You Can Keep – If you can be gazelle intense until the last cent is paid, then please do so. It’s the quickest way out of debt. If you can’t, then adjust your spending to a point where you can build a debt snowball and sustain it until the debt is paid off.
  • Find Ways to Reward Your Achievements – As humans we all need incentives to do something. For some people seeing the numbers go down on their debt is motivation enough to continue. For others, though, you have to create a frugal reward system as you pay down each of your debts. You might want to throw a party at your house (provided you cook the meals or have a potluck) after paying back your family member or friend that money you owed her for a bit. You could also buy a video game (single game; used) when you finish paying off that store card.

Thoughts on Tackling Debt

I’d love to hear your thoughts. What tips do you have on keeping your finances in check? I hope you can join in the discussion;  I know many of you have some wonderful thoughts on reducing debt.

Photo Credit

2012: Year of the Student Loan

counting my money

I started  My Financial Reviews for several reasons, including earning some extra income. Inspired by J. Money’s brilliant idea about having gigs for goals, I decided to focus MFR’s 2012 income towards paying down our student loan.

I’ll be using any after tax revenue generated from here to reach this goal. It won’t be too much, but I’m hoping to make an extra $100/month to pay down the student loan principal.

Just Another Debt That Will Bite The Dust

counting my money
Every dollar and cent counts

I’m happy to say that paying down this student loan is just another step in our journey to eliminate debt. Looking back at how it was accomplished encourages me to work hard and get this loan done with.

Credit Cards – Paid Off About $2,500

Years ago I had 3 credit cards and for two of them I went over the limit, which meant I incurred even more fees.  I was a college student working part-time which meant I shouldn’t have signed up for credit cards in the first place as my small (and sometimes irregular) income couldn’t handle paying them off every month. Thankfully I came to my senses and worked hard to get them eliminated before I got married.

Now I have a credit card that I use for vacation planning and small expenses and the balance is paid off monthly.

Car Loan – Paid Off About $10,000

Remember when I mention having a limited budget that couldn’t handle credit cards? One reason I was having a hard time paying off the balance each month was because I had big expenses to worry about, including a car loan that I really couldn’t afford.

I bought a car for about $10,000 at a wonderful interest rate of 13.75%. I think the just seeing that interest rate and the fact they wanted a co-signer should’ve clued me in that the car wasn’t in my budget. Unfortuantely I still went ahead on buying the car.

When we got married we decided to pay the car off faster, so we started making extra payments. Our tax refunds and stimulus check went to lower the principal.

We did pay off the car loan early and now we’re saving up for the next family car instead of taking out a loan.

Watch Me Make It (or Break It)

I’ll have a monthly update (around the 15th of the month) throughout this year so you can see what progress I make with paying down the student loan. If you have any ideas on earning a bit more money to pay down the loan, please let me know in the comments. Hopefully it’ll help others to conquer their debt this year.

Thoughts on Student Loans

I’m curious – how many of you have student loans? About how much do you have left to pay?

Photo Credit: Marion Doss