06 Jun

Extreme Debt Payment Strategies

Extreme Debt Payment Strategies
Getting out of debt is usually more of a marathon than a sprint but if you’re not exactly the most patient person, getting to the finish line faster may become the goal. If you want to take your debt out ahead of schedule, however, you’re going to have to do more than just cut back on your spending. Putting some of these less frequently tried-and-true strategies to work could make debt payment at warp speed a reality.

Join the Military

If a career in the armed services isn’t something you’ve ever considered, there are a few good reasons to give it some thought when you’re buried in debt payment. Between the base pay and the potential to earn sign-on bonuses, you stand to pick up a decent amount of cash for serving your country. The door is still open to people who aren’t available to serve full-time.

Soldiers who enlist in the Army Reserve, for example, are only required to make a commitment of one weekend per month and attend a two-week training exercise once a year, so it’s not a huge burden on your time. As of 2015, Drill Pay for a Private First Class with less than two years of service is set at $3,791.34 annually. If you stick with it for the long-term and become an officer, the pay jumps to over $12,000.

Soldiers who enlist in the Army Reserve, for example, are only required to make a commitment of one weekend per month and attend a two-week training exercise once a year, so it’s not a huge burden on your time. As of 2015, Drill Pay for a Private First Class with less than two years of service is set at $3,791.34 annually. If you stick with it for the long-term and become an officer, the pay jumps to over $12,000.

On top of that, you can also earn bonuses when you enlist. The bonus for Army Reserve members can go as high as $20,000. If you decide to sign up for active duty, the bonus can be as much as $40,000, depending on what type of role you’re taking on. That’s a pretty tempting carrot the Army dangles if you’re comfortable with the level of risk that active duty may entail.

Move Overseas

Leaving the country is a big step but desperate times call for desperate measures when you’re paying off debt. Moving abroad to find work carries certain advantages that can make it easier to eliminate those credit card bills or student loans.

For one thing, the money you earn while working overseas may be subject to the Foreign Income Exclusion if you’re outside the U.S. for at least 12 months. This IRS rule allows you to exclude a certain amount of income from taxation and for 2015, the limit is set at $100,800. It’s also possible to exclude or deduct your housing expenses.

If you’re able to land a position where your housing costs are included, that frees up more of your take-home pay to put towards your debt payment. The Council on International Education Exchange, for instance, offers a chance to teach English in countries around the world. Program participants who work in China can earn as much as $1,200 USD per month along with free housing and airfare reimbursements. That’s not a bad deal if you want to pay off debt and see the world while you’re at it.

Shrink Your Housing Costs

If you own a home, you’ve got lots of ways to make extra money for debt payment. From taking on a roommate or two to renting out your couch on Airbnb, you could be sitting on a virtual gold mine of untapped cash. While these tactics are certainly out of the box, it’s possible to take things one step further by downsizing to the extreme.

The tiny house craze is catching on all over the country and jumping on the bandwagon isn’t as expensive as you think. In fact, it’s possible to build a fully functional tiny home for as little as $10,000 to $15,000 if you’re willing to do the work yourself. If you’ve got a bigger home that you’re able to sell for a decent profit then you may be able to spend a little more.

If you’re comfortable living in close quarters, moving into a tiny home is a great way to blast your debt in less time. When you don’t have a $1,000 mortgage payment hanging over your head and your monthly energy costs are drastically reduced, finding extra cash to throw at the debt is no longer an obstacle.

Donate Your DNA

There are a number of people out there who, for one reason or another, don’t or can’t choose traditional routes for having children. While adoption is one alternative, some prefer to use egg or sperm donors to complete their family. For the person who’s donating the necessary genetic material, that means collecting a sizable payday.

According to NW Cryobank, a sperm donation facility located in Washington State, donors can earn as much as $1,000 per month. The Center for Human Reproduction, located in New York City, offers egg donors $8,000 for a completed egg retrieval. If the cycle isn’t completed for some reason, you still receive $1,000 for your time.

Donating part of yourself is certainly extreme and it’s definitely not right for everyone. On the other hand, if you’re comfortable knowing that your DNA is helping others realize their dream of becoming parents, you might see it as an opportunity to accelerate your debt payoff.

Final Word

When you can’t stand the thought of throwing away another dime on loan or credit card interest, wanting to kick your efforts into high gear is a natural reaction. The four methods we’ve described here are by no means run-of-the-mill but they can help you get where you want to go faster if you’re willing to go out on a limb.

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