7 Bizarre Ways to Pay Off Debt That None of Us Were Ever Taught

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You’re ready to be out of debt. Sounds like the understatement of the century, right? You can’t wait to be debt-free. But you feel like you’ve tried everything. And everywhere you turn, your debt is still there — impacting just about every area of your life.

But we’ve got a bunch of strategies you probably didn’t realize you could use to help you pay it off.

1. This Website Helps Wipe Out Your Credit Card Debt 

A woman lays on the grass with credit cards surrounding her.
Tina Russell/The Penny Hoarder

Imagine waking up with no credit card debt. Whether you’re stressed about being in debt forever or you’re just sick of the extra monthly bill, this would be a huge relief.

Impossible, right? But with help from a free website called AmOne, you could wipe out all of your credit card debt by the end of the week.

It will match you with a low-interest loan to pay off all your credit cards at once. Its interest rates start at 3.49% — way lower than the 20% or more you’re probably paying your credit card company. That could save you thousands in the long run.

Plus, you’ll be debt-free that much faster.

AmOne keeps your information confidential and secure, which is probably why after 20 years in business, it still has an A+ rating with the Better Business Bureau.

It takes two minutes to see if you qualify for up to $50,000 online.

2. This Website Will Tell You What Bills To Pay Off First

One of the toughest parts about paying down your debts is simply knowing where to begin.

Which of your credit cards are carrying a balance? Is your name attached to any unpaid loans? Are you behind on medical or utility bills you didn’t know about?

That’s where a free website like Credit Sesame can help. It takes about two minutes to sign up and access your free credit score. From there, Credit Sesame will outline your debt — exactly what you owe and to whom — and offer personalized recommendations. It’ll even break down the interest rates and minimum monthly payments attached to your bills.

Armed with this intel, you’ll be able to more easily devise your payoff plan. Do you want to use the debt avalanche method, where you’ll pay off your highest interest rates first? Or maybe you prefer the debt snowball method, where you start with the smallest balances first.

You can continue to use Credit Sesame to keep track of your progress and hold yourself accountable. And, hey, it might be kind of fun watching your credit score react to all your hard work!

It takes two minutes to get started with Credit Sesame.

3. Keep Your Avocado Toast. Cancel This Monthly Bill Instead

The experts will tell you to cut every single unnecessary purchase out of your life so you can pay off debt. The fancy coffee. The avocado toast. The dinner out. They’ll even make you feel guilty about it.

Sure, it is important to limit your fun spending. But the truth is, when it comes to cutting expenses, you have bigger fish to fry — like your car insurance.

You’ve probably been overpaying your name-brand coverage thousands of dollars over the last few years. But a free website called The Zebra wants to fix that by comparing prices from more than 100 companies for you.

The Zebra has the relationships with insurance companies to make sure they stop ripping you off. In fact, The Zebra says it saves people up to $670 a year.

Just imagine what that could do for your debt payments.

You don’t have to make any calls or fill out any extensive forms. It takes two minutes to see how much The Zebra can put back in your pocket.

And the best part? If you find a policy you like, you can sign up online instantly.

4. See if You Can Get Money From This Company

a woman logs into her bank account on her cell phone.
Tina Russell/The Penny Hoarder

Here’s the deal: If you’re not using Aspiration’s debit card, you’re missing out on extra cash. And who doesn’t want extra cash?

Yep. A debit card called Aspiration gives you up to a 5% back every time you swipe.

Need to buy groceries? Extra cash.

Need to fill up the tank? Bam. Even more extra cash.

You were going to buy these things anyway — why not get this extra money in the process and put it towards paying off your debt?

Enter your email address here, and link your bank account to see how much extra cash you can get with your free Aspiration account. And don’t worry. Your money is FDIC insured and under a military-grade encryption. That’s nerd talk for “this is totally safe.”

5. This Research Company Will Pay You up to $225/Month to Watch Videos

What if we told you a research company would pay you to watch cooking videos on your computer?

It’s too good to be true, right?

But we’re serious. InboxDollars will pay you to watch short video clips online. One minute you might watch someone bake brownies and the next you might get the latest updates on Kardashian drama.

All you have to do is choose which videos you want to watch and answer a few quick questions about them afterward.

No, InboxDollars won’t replace your full-time job, but it’s something easy you can do while you’re already on the couch tonight wasting time on your phone. Plus, it’s extra money you can put toward paying down your debt. Everything helps.

InboxDollars won’t completely pay off your credit cards, but it’s possible to earn up to $225 per month watching these videos.

It’s already paid its users more than $56 million.

It takes about one minute to sign up, and you’ll immediately get a $5 bonus to get you started.

6. Earn up to $69/Hour as a Small Business Owner

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Can you open an excel spreadsheet? Does earning $69 an hour sound appealing? How about the freedom to work remotely while helping others succeed?

Those are the perks of working as a bookkeeper, says Ben Robinson, a CPA and business owner who teaches others to become virtual bookkeepers through online courses called Bookkeepers.com.

You don’t have to be an accountant or even really good at math to be successful in this business. In fact, all you need are decent computer skills and a passion for helping business owners tackle real-world problems. The ability to stay moderately organized is helpful, too.

You can make up to $69 an hour, according to data from Intuit, the creator of QuickBooks, and you have no commute. It’s a great opportunity for parents who want a part-time job, recent college grads or anyone who wants to bring in real money working from home.

Robinson shares what it takes to be a virtual bookkeeper, plus tips for making this career work for you in his free class at Bookkeepers.com. If you stick with the classes, you could be running your own business in just a few months.

7. Chip Away at Your Credit Card Debt — One Food Delivery at a Time

One of the best things you can do for yourself is to wipe out your credit card debt. You’ll erase the anxiety and high-interest rates that come with it.

But sometimes, paying down your debt is near impossible, unless you increase your income. For a lot of us, committing to another work schedule is just not realistic. That’s where delivering takeout to your neighbors through an app like Postmates can be a real life-saver.

With Postmates, you set your own schedule and pick and choose which deliveries you want to make. And unlike other delivery apps, you keep 100% of your earnings, meaning you won’t lose money on sneaky fees.

Holly Gaston, of San Francisco, California, has tried plenty of side gigs. With Postmates, she made an average of $15 an hour. Plus, she said it was much more enjoyable than any of her previous side gigs.

You’ll get paid weekly, which is the perfect opportunity to just funnel that money straight to your credit card payments. Or, if you want, you can cash out instantly.

Signing up takes about three minutes.