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How I increased my student loan payments by $3,000 in a single year. Since paying off my debt was more important than buying everything I wanted last year, I had to admit that I talked myself out of *most* of them (although the really cute sweaters and shoes I saw wanted me to think otherwise).

The more I mature, the more I understand how critical it is for me to pay off my student loans as quickly as possible. The thought of debt hanging over my head is the worst!

So, last year, I made the decision to try to pay off some of my loans after I paid off my car. To make extra payments on my school loans so that my principal debt would suffer rather than just the interest that seems to accumulate every month, I had to use some of my personal spending money.

It wasn’t a simple journey. Probably the hardest part was seeing my allowed spending money arrive and depart so quickly.

In all honesty, this routine quickly grew tiresome. I made the decision that if I wanted to make this work, I would have to find a way to earn some more money so that I wouldn’t feel like I had nothing left over for myself (I know that sounds selfish, but I work hard for my money and I want to use it to learn new things, buy books, take my hubby on dates, and so on).

I therefore succeeded in paying an additional $3,000 on my school debts by the end of the year (in addition to the minimum payments that were required).

Paying off student loans can be challenging. That's why I'm sharing my tips for managing money, budgeting, and making extra money online so that I can get out of debt quicker. Be sure to pin and save for later!

Disclosure: This article contains affiliate links, which means that if you purchase something after clicking on one of them, I will receive a tiny commission at no additional cost to you.

Here’s what I did:

I DID ALLOCATE A PARTICULAR PERCENTAGE OF MY SPENDING MONEY TO THE LOANS (BUT NOT ALL OF IT) As I previously mentioned, I wanted to have some money for my own use because I occasionally like a good serving of froyo, but I also made sure that some of that money went toward paying down my college loans. Even if all you have left over each month to contribute toward your personal debt is $10, it makes a difference.

It’s true that I might not have been able to afford that extra clothing I wanted or that I had to eat at home more often, but it didn’t take long for me to get used to it, and soon, it just became normal.

I also changed how frequently I made student loan installments. I made the decision to make my extra payments every week or every other week rather than waiting for the interest to accumulate between monthly payments. The interest suffered more because of this (which, lets be honest, is the worst part about these loans).

I earned money online. I wasn’t really aware that blogging could earn money when I first started Chase the Write Dream. After three years, I’ve discovered that there are genuinely a variety of internet and blog-related ways to monetize your website.

Knowing this, I made it a point to put some of the lessons I learned into practice and earned extra money that I could use to pay down my student loans.

For starters, I put a little more emphasis on my blog, which helped to boost sales. P.S. If you’re interested in finding out how to establish a blog and perhaps earn some additional cash, check out my article Easy Steps for Creating a Blog.

On Swagbucks , I also completed various surveys and unrelated activities. Although there aren’t many opportunities to earn a lot of money on this site, our goal is to accomplish small things consistently.

I was able to make a few additional dollars each month to contribute to my loan payments with a little bit of work.
Related: 5 Home-Based Business Ideas to Get You Started

I SOLD MY UNWANTED CLOTHES AND SHOES ON POSHMARK. Poshmark is an app that enables you to sell your unwanted clothing, shoes, and accessories for sale. I first learned about it last summer. Although I was initially hesitant, this software ended up genuinely changing my life.

However, after I got into the swing of things, I discovered that I was selling my old clothes and shoes quite rapidly. I must admit that it did take a little more effort at first because it functions very much like a social platform in that you need to be actively posting and advertising your products.

In this piece, you can read more about how I quickly rose to top 10 percent seller status: Simple Advice for Selling on Poshmark to Increase Sales.

I RECEIVED MONEY BACK FOR MY PURCHASES Why not receive some cash back from the frequent internet transactions we make in today’s society?

Over the course of the year, I really tried to use Ebates whenever I did any online purchasing, and the savings really mounted up! You know those college books you have to buy? Through Ebates , there are numerous possibilities available. The same is true for dorm room furnishings, school supplies, and all the other necessities for college.

In addition to Ebates , you might want to consider applying for a rewards credit card. Important: If you choose to go this way, be sure to pay off your credit card completely each month to avoid incurring interest fees.

I use the Chase Freedom card, which offers quarterly cash back of up to 5% on some categories and 1% on all other transactions.

I STARTED WORKING AS AN AFFILIATE FOR PRODUCTS I SUPPORT AND USE Did you know that there are a number of affiliate programs available for you to join? In essence, being an affiliate entails suggesting goods to others while earning a cut of any sales generated by your affiliate link. Some individuals do this through blogs, while others use social media.

If you go this way, just make sure you adhere to all FTC disclosure requirements (meaning you must inform readers that your post contains affiliate links by including a disclaimer at the top or by using the hashtag #ad or something similar).

I participate in the following affiliate programs, and you ought to, too:

IT’S TIME TO START! It’s time for you to get started so you can address your debt now that I’ve given you some perspective on how I paid extra on my school loans last year. Which task from the list above are you going to try to complete?

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