Sell, sell, sell.
I set up an account on Kidizen and have had great success selling my children’s gently used clothes. I am loving this app. Best of all is that it’s free. Think about it…… one of your kids needs new cleats but you don’t want to swing the full price? The next seasonal consignment sale is months away, and you may live 2 hours away from the nearest kid’s consignment store. True story, we do. Kidizen is sure to have some cleats for around ten bucks. Sellers are required to ship within 5 days and usually it’s much faster. We all know our kids, especially babies and toddlers, outgrow clothes at lightning speeds. If we’re honest, most of us probably have a few things in the kid’s closets with tags still on it. Shhhhh….don’t tell my mother. Kidizen is the perfect outlet for these. I am a huge fan of consignment shops, sales, and everything else second-hand, and this is one of the easiest and best ways to get value for children’s clothes. The money you make from kidizen can either be used for credit on the app to buy (temptation, what?!) or deposited to your bank account or Paypal account. It’s all very user friendly.
Tradesy is another awesome website where you can sell your gently used clothes, accessories, and shoes. I have bought and sold things on this and had great experiences. I have not used, but also have heard great things about Poshmark.
The biggest sale this month was our 12×32 storage building on Craigslist. In one of my previous business endeavors, I ran a trunk sale boutique business and would host open shop nights in my cute little building. The building is finished out on the inside, but we really didn’t need such a nice place to store my husband’s duck decoys and my donation/yard sale pile. This one sale alone helped me knock out 1/3 of my credit card debt.
Now that we are in debt payoff mode, we try to go around and take inventory of what can be put on Craigslist or ebay. Facebook Yard Sale groups are also another good way to sell your used stuff. One man’s trash is another man’s treasure, right? Or another man’s way to pay off some debt.
Use Coupons at Local Stores
While I don’t have any aspirations to appear on the crazy extreme couponing shows, this is a great way to stock your pantry. It also creates the mindset that people who ever pay full price for toothpaste or razors have maybe lost their minds. Kidding, but it is a bit addictive to score such great deals. This past month I made a few small hauls with coupons at local stores. The hubs jokes about my “hauls”. My haul is usually 2-3 laundry detergents or toothpastes that I may get for free or super cheap. I did actually score 10 packs of rice this month for free. My method of couponing is nowhere near “extreme.” Working full time as a dietitian with two young boys and a husband in the throes of full summer farming is not conducive to hours and hours spent clipping coupons. I do, however, collect Sunday papers from people who don’t want them on Monday. Typically, I will look through sale papers to see what is on sale at our local grocery store, look through old newspaper inserts, order any coupons that I may see I can get a great deal with from www.dailydimes.com, and then use these when they come in to make my haul. One huge help to me is www.krazycouponlady.com. The site is basically just a couponer’s answered prayer. They match stores and coupons to let you know what deals to get. Heck, they even give you the “stock up” price. If you haven’t been on the site, do it now. It is a wealth of information for anyone even slightly interested in couponing or just saving money in general.
Negotiate Interest Rates on Credit Cards
This is one that took me some courage to build up to. Don’t ask me why, I guess maybe my people pleasing personality feared they might yell at me for asking. I know….I’m a strange one. But, overall it was a very pleasant experience! There are several different blogs that give you word-for-word scripts when you call these scary people. Basically, just being sweet and polite can typically help a lot in this circumstance. Kindly asking to lower your interest rate and giving yourself props for being a long time customer in good standing goes a long way. It also helps if you have paid your bill on time. (Go Me!) With a simple call, one company dropped my percentage 6%. This is a huge deal and will make a big dent towards paying it down.
Shop at Aldi
This one is just a no-brainer. Aldi consistently has the best prices if you don’t have tons of time to coupon for everything at your local stores. I literally cut my grocery bill in half when I get to grocery shop here. Pondering that last sentence?? We live about 100 miles from the nearest Aldi, so these grocery trips are reserved for days when I have a work meeting or other special reason to be in the nearest “big city.”
One caveat is to stay away from their middle “deal” aisles. I mean, I have found some amazing deals there. But, when in full debt payoff mode, if it’s not in the budget, the new patio set or full set of beautiful cookware is NOT warranted. No matter if it is only $19.99. Just walk away.
This is perhaps the biggest one of all for me. It almost hurts to type the words. I LOVED my Louis Vuitton purse. It was a beautiful brown Neverfull that could hold almost my 4 year old child in it. But you know what, once we decided to be fully invested in paying off our debt in order to build our dream house in the country, that purse kept staring at me telling me how much money it was worth and how much I could put towards my credit card. So, on Tradesy it went. Ahh, Dave Ramsey, what have you done to me???? Le sigh……Fast forward a week or so, it had not sold on Tradesy. I was still carrying it and a little pleased (if I’m being totally honest) that I hadn’t sold it yet. The plot twist occured when my summertime babysitter started once school ended in May. Summertime babysitting, or childcare in general, as we all know, can be an added expense when you work full time. When my babysitter mentioned that she LOVED my purse, a light bulb moment happened! And there it was- my first bartering attempt and success. I have saved on babysitting, and she has my precious Louis Vuitton purse. Now I can still look at it when I want, and I have saved myself quite a bit on childcare. Win-win!
This can be done with anything you have that someone else might want or need. A dear friend of mine was telling me this week how she barters with a local store owner. My friend is an AMAZING cook and often trades her home-baked goodies for other things she needs. Take some time and think outside the box for an idea you might can barter for instead of paying full price. Babysitting, home-cooked meals, and tutoring lessons are just a few ideas that come to mind.
What have you done this past month to help yourself on the debt payoff journey? I’d love to hear your ideas or stories!!