3 of 8
BACKNEXT
Jowharah McNeil
Jowharah McNeil
McNeil, 32, and her husband collect loose change in a jar to help make monthly payments on their credit card.
Strategy: Put spare change to work.
Advice: Cut back, use cash.

I was laid off for 18 months and had two credit cards to pay off, so I had to learn to be creative. My husband and I have been trying out a cash-only spending system and we're only allowed to spend $40 a week per person on non-necessities. That means once the cash is gone, it's gone -- no more spending.

While doing this strict new budget, we noticed we had a lot of loose change everywhere -- in our cars, leftover from doing laundry -- so we started collecting all the change we could find and putting it in a jar by the door. Every month, we would use whatever money is in the jar to make payments on one of the credit cards. The minimum payment is only $39, but we usually paid an extra $50 or $60 using the coins we collected so that we can get it totally paid off as soon as possible.

Since we started collecting the coins about six months ago, we've already paid more than $560 of the $1,000 balance on the card, so this is really working for us.


NEXT: Brian Leigh
Last updated October 21 2010: 12:29 PM ET
What to do with $1,000 now Given the uncertain economic picture, you probably have a chunk of change squirreled away. Here's how to best use that cash. More
11 ways money buys happinessSometimes a small splurge is all it takes to feel rich. Here's how 11 readers get the most happiness for their buck. More
9 smart new ways to manage your $$ At Finovate, 56 companies vied to be the next big thing in personal finance. From pay-by-smartphone to smarter banking, here's what was new and cool. More
  • Find Homes for sale
    Real estate and homes for sale on Trulia

  • Property Type
  • Find a home in:
  • New York | Atlanta | Chicago | Los Angeles
  • Washington D.C | Houston | Philadelphia | More options
Special Offer
Market indexes are shown in real time, except for the DJIA, which is delayed by two minutes. All times are ET. Disclaimer Morningstar: © 2014 Morningstar, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Disclaimer The Dow Jones IndexesSM are proprietary to and distributed by Dow Jones & Company, Inc. and have been licensed for use. All content of the Dow Jones IndexesSM © 2014 is proprietary to Dow Jones & Company, Inc. Chicago Mercantile Association. The market data is the property of Chicago Mercantile Exchange Inc. and its licensors. All rights reserved. FactSet Research Systems Inc. 2014. All rights reserved. Most stock quote data provided by BATS.