Day 4 of NCN’s 33 Days and 33 Ways to Reduce Debt Challenge is about Extra Payments Extra Deposits. Basically it boils down to making more than one payment a month, be it to your savings account or snowflaking to debt.
Any of the regular (or even casual) readers of this blog know that I am a HUGE fan and practitioner of the mini payment concept. As *soon* as I get money that is earmarked for snowflaking (surveys, selling things, unexpected gifts) off it goes to the credit card. The very moment it hits my bank account it is bounced off to the credit card. Very very often if one was to look at my bank statement online there will be what I call matching payments. There will be a deposit for an amount (like $10.69) then the very next line is an online payment to Capital One for the exact same amount. This will have to be altered slightly as I change to Citibank that only allows 4 payments per billing cycle, but I aim to make it a weekly event instead of an instant event with a similar effect.
To illustrate this in action and the power of making these mini payments, I’ll dissect my last billing cycle with Capital One . My minimum payment due was $117. I made one large payment, that included my $117 minimum payment, of $323.01. So $206.01 of that was over and above the minimum. But that’s not all. In addition to that snowflake, I made payments in the amounts of $55.54, $23.62, $4.28, $3.00, and $12.00 over the course of the billing cycle for a grand total in payments of $421.45, the total amount over the minimum being $304.45. Without making those extra mini-payments, I would have missed out on reducing my principal by close to $100. That’s a lot of money to me! I could have saved them all up for one big snowflake but something might have happened to make me spend some of it before it got to the credit card. You may think that it isn’t worth it to make a $2 or a $4 payment but it really is. Every little bit adds up.
All these extra instantaneous mini payments are really helping me get out of debt faster than I ever thought possible. Seeing my debt total creep downwards really keeps me focused and motivated. I recommend everyone try it! I like the big payments too of course but I like the multiple mini concept as well. I intend to employ a similar tactic when saving is my primary goal, and I hope I get great results!