The Top 10 Ways to Pay Off A Large Debt

Blog Post Image

Debt is something nearly all of us have in common. Truth be told, it can have it's benefits, if used wisely. However, for many people, debt can become an unending burden that presents more obstacles than opportunities. We've all been there... when life happens, and debt becomes the immediate solution - the HVAC needs to be replaced in the dead of summer; the car engine dies and it's time for a new one; someone gets sick and medical costs have to be considered; you need to go back to school to qualify for the higher paying position at your job - you name it, there are countless reasons to get into debt.

Consequently, when there is no long term exit plan in place to take care of the debt responsibly, the next thing you know, the immediate solution of debt then becomes an obstacle, and those obstacles can prevent us from moving forward with ventures like purchasing real estate, investing, traveling, college for the kids, retirement, and most importantly, financial freedom. As a result, many often give up and crawl deeper down the rabbit hole of insurmountable debt and negative credit, convinced that they can never escape. On the contrary, nothing could be farther from the truth!

After many years in the real estate industry, I have seen what looked like an insane amount of debt be wiped away little by little with discipline and a plan, in order for a client to achieve a goal they set in their mind to do. I have also achieved the same in my own personal experience after the long process of having to pick up the pieces of the lasting effects of the 2008 crash. So, if you're currently struggling with debt that seems to be never ending, there is hope! Here are 10 ways that you can financially re-position yourself with confidence and begin to see real results in just 6-12 months:



  1. Create a Budget: A budget will help with organizing your finances to know what expenses you have and where you can cut costs. A great way to do this is to get a copy of the last 2 months of your bank and credit card statements. Highlight all the costs where you see that you can sacrifice and cut from your spending (i.e. subscriptions you aren't using, eating out, dining and grocery delivery services are major ones). Add up the amount you are spending on these excess expenses on average, and apply it to your debt.  You'll be amazed at how much you will clear by this task alone!
  2. Prioritize your debts: You need to understand the magnitude of each debt, the interest rate on it, and decide which ones to pay off first. Tackle high interest credit card and personal loan debts first. These are costing you the most per month.
  3. Consolidate your debts: Debt consolidation is an effective method that involves combining multiple debts into a single loan with a lower interest rate. This also helps manage paying on multiple accounts much better, and lessens the chance of missing payments. 
  4. Snowball approach: Start by paying off the smallest debts first while making minimum payments on the rest.
  5. Debt management plan: This plan involves working with a credit counseling agency to negotiate lower interest rates and monthly payments. Local agencies in Savannah that can assist consumers with this plan as a free service are the Consumer Credit Counseling Service of Savannah (CCCS) and the Neighborhood Improvement Association (NIA).
  6. Side Hustle: Consider picking up a side gig to earn extra income to help pay off your debts faster. What are you good at? Baking, writing/editing, public speaking, event planning, t-shirt branding/design, etc. Monetize your gifts to help finance and eventually minimize your debt. 
  7. Negotiate with creditors: Try negotiating with your creditors for lower interest rates or waived fees.
  8. Sell unwanted items: Sell unused items around the house or clothes to make extra cash that can go towards paying off debts. This is also a fantastic way to de-clutter your space and get rid of unwanted items you are not using. Not a yard person? Neither am I! Try online platforms like Facebook Marketplace to sell your items quickly!
  9. Seek financial advice: Consider consulting a financial advisor for guidance on how to get out of debt.
  10. Stay disciplined: Paying off large debt requires discipline, patience, and determination. Stick to your plan no matter how challenging it gets.



In conclusion, debt is a fact of life. We all have needed it, and we all have benefited from it in one way or another. The solution is not so much to avoid it at all costs, but to learn how to manage it, responsibly. As we move forward amidst all the talk of interest rates, home prices, the fed, recessions, and everything else that will occur no matter where we are in life...don't let the trees distract you from the forest. Whatever your goal is, and no matter where you are financially in terms of debt, I guarantee you that if you implement some or all of the 10 steps above to use debt to your advantage, you will position yourself to regain control of your life, take back your financial freedom, and begin to actually put into action the things that you have purposed in your mind to do. Remember, debt is really the small thing; and, you're actually the giant!