Prioritize paying off debt
Reeves admits that, like many Americans, she “did not have a penny saved going through anesthesia school," so she took out student loans.
But the first thing Reeves did when she finished school and started working as a CRNA was pay off her debt.
Higher-interest debts like your credit cards or your car loan can weigh you down, and it’s especially hard to get out from under them if you’re juggling multiple bills with different timelines and interest rates.
To simplify things, you might want to consider rolling all of your debts into a single loan with a low interest rate.
You can use a free service called Credible to comparison-shop for the lowest interest rates on loans of up to $100,000 with no collateral.
Once you find the right loan, you can use it to clear all your other debts immediately. You’ll only have one payment to make each month moving forward, and you won’t be throwing as much of your hard-earned money away on interest.
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Stop overpaying for essentials
In addition to picking up a side gig, you can also boost your monthly cash flow by cutting down the amount you spend on recurring bills, like your car insurance.
It can be easy to fall into a pattern of just paying your monthly insurance bill without a second thought, but experts recommend shopping around for better rates every six months or so.
And while spending an afternoon comparing car insurance rates doesn’t exactly sound like fun, you can use a free service called Pretected to make the whole process a lot more quick and painless.
After providing some basic information about your driving history, Pretected will send you a range of policy options from top insurance companies based on your own unique needs. The smart matching system will help you make an educated decision that maximizes both coverage and affordability.
In a matter of minutes, you may be able to save up to 50% on you car insurance costs — money that you can put to much better use somewhere else.
Invest for passive income
Once you’ve got a handle on your debt and have started to increase your monthly earnings, you should consider investing some of your extra cash for passive income.
It doesn’t have to be a lot at first — you can even start by investing your spare change with an app called Acorns. Just connect your credit or debit card to the Acorns app, and every time you make a purchase it will automatically round up the amount to the nearest dollar and invest it in a diversified portfolio.
If you’re ready to invest a bit more but are worried about the state of the stock market, there are a number of stable, recession-resistant assets out there that can help you minimize your risk.
Fine art is a great example. Thanks to Masterworks, you no longer have to be a millionaire to invest in paintings by iconic artists like Banksy and Basquiat. Masterworks lets you buy and sell shares of fine art pieces the same way you’d trade stocks.
Since it launched, Masterworks users have seen remarkable net annualized returns, ranging from 9% to 39% depending on the individual painting sold.
If art doesn’t speak to you, another solid option to consider is commercial real estate. With First National Realty Partners, you can invest in institutional-grade commercial real estate properties that are all anchored by major grocery chains, like Whole Foods and Walmart. So even during a recession, you’ll still receive quarterly income.
And if you think you don’t know enough about real estate to break into the market, don’t worry — FNRP’s team of experts will do all the legwork for you.
Stop overpaying for home insurance
Home insurance is an essential expense – one that can often be pricey. You can lower your monthly recurring expenses by finding a more economical alternative for home insurance.
SmartFinancial can help you do just that. SmartFinancial’s online marketplace of vetted home insurance providers allows you to quickly shop around for rates from the country’s top insurance companies, and ensure you’re paying the lowest price possible for your home insurance.Explore better rates
Work a side hustle
So how exactly did Reeves find the cash to pay off $200,000 of student debt before she hit her 30s?
“I threw money at it every month, working over time, working different shifts, working things to pay off my loans as soon as I could,” she explained in another TikTok.
Not all jobs offer overtime pay or additional shifts, but you can supplement your income by picking up a side gig. According to the job-search site Zippia, 45% of working Ameircans have a side hustle in 2023, and they spend an average of 13 hours per week doing it.
If 13 hours a week doesn’t seem doable, there are other ways to boost your income that don’t require a major time commitment.
For example, you can use an online platform called Survey Junkie to earn gift cards and cash payouts for sharing your feedback on the products you use and the places you go.
Even just filling out your profile and confirming your email address will earn you rewards points, so you’ll be well on your way to getting your first payout before you’ve even had to do any work.
Another low-stakes option for supplementing your income is Swagbucks, a platform that offers similar rewards for playing games, watching videos, and shopping online — stuff you were probably going to do already.
When you sign up for Swagbucks and earn 2,500 points within your first 60 days, you'll get a sweet $5 bonus. It's an extra incentive to jumpstart your earnings and make the most out of this easy opportunity.
Put your savings to work
One of the best ways to make your money last is to save. But you need to make sure you’re saving effectively —if you’re just letting your nest egg sit in a checking account, you’re essentially throwing money away.
Switching to a high-yield savings account will help your savings grow over time, and create a snowball effect: the more money you set aside, the more compound interest you’ll earn.
If you’re not sure whether your current bank offers the best return on your earnings, you can browse from a selection of top high-yield savings accounts to see what else is out there.
While the national interest rate average is an APY of 0.4%, online banks can offer you much more competitive returns.
Remember, you don’t have to settle for your current bank account just because it’s what you’re used to. Changing things up could earn you hundreds — or possibly thousands — in additional interest over time.
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