Debt repayment

Pay Off Debt Using Other People's Money

by Erin Huffstetler

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Imagine getting someone else to pay off all of your debt. Sounds like a great fantasy, doesn't it? Well, now is the time to turn that fantasy into a reality. Read on to learn how to do it.

Recycle - Littering is an ugly and wasteful habit, not to mention illegal and environmentally unfriendly. Fortunately, you can get back at those who litter by sticking them with your debt repayment.

To take part in this fun scenario, just get your family started on weekly or monthly trash collection walks. Armed with trash bags and rubber gloves, you'll greatly reduce the amount of litter around your town, while building a stock of aluminum cans that can be turned in for profit. After all, it only seems fair to turn another's waste into something positive, especially when that waste is something as despicable as littering.

To identify areas in your town that are in need of clean up, look for highly traveled roadways, parking lots, bike paths, parks and densely populated residential streets.

Curb shop - Do you hate to see useable furniture, toys, exercise equipment and other household goods end up in the landfill? Then, you'll be happy to learn that there's a simple way to turn consumer waste into a win for you and the environment.

First, find out when your city trash service picks up large household items. Then, hop in your car and drive around town a day or two before this date to collect any items that appear to be in useable, sellable condition. Be sure to check with the homeowners first. You wouldn't want to take something that they weren't throwing out!

When your collection of curb finds is large enough, hold a yard sale; then, put whatever you earn towards debt repayment. After all, earning money from the sale of your own junk is nice, but earning money from the sale of other people's junk is just so much nicer.

Upromise - You probably already know that a Upromise account enables you to earn money for college, but did you know that a Upromise account can also be used to repay your student loans?

To take advantage of this great program, simply sign up for a Upromise account, (if you're not already a member) and then link your student loan account to your Upromise account. Once your loan has been verified, Upromise will begin making loan repayments every time your earnings reach the payment threshold ($50 the first time and $25 every time thereafter). If companies want to give you money to buy the products that you use anyway, it would be foolish not to take advantage of it.

Nickel and dime - How often do you come across change that has been dropped in a parking lot? Probably pretty frequently, if you're like me.

Now is the time to use the carelessness of others to boost your repayment efforts. Start a change jar in your house, and deposit any found coins (or bills) into it. Then, once the jar is full, roll the coins and use the money for an extra credit card or loan payment.

To speed up the success of your efforts, challenge yourself to walk busy parking lots towards the end of the day when they are mostly free of cars.

Who knows, you may even want to pick up an inexpensive metal detector at a pawnshop, and then try your luck at uncovering lost change at parks and beaches. This method could even net you a few jewelry finds that could be sold or pawned for even more debt repayment dollars. It's a tantalizing possibility at the very least.

The bottom line is that spending your own money on debt repayment can be painful. So, skip the pain and spend someone else's money.

Erin Huffstetler is a freelance writer and mother of two who resides in East Tennessee. She is the Guide of the Frugal Living section at and the owner of the site My Frugal Home.

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