Not all of us are born to be organizational wizards, but if you want to get ahead with your money, you’ve got to get it under your control. It’s the only way you’ll get any of the big stuff done, such as paying off debt, taking a real vacation, buying a house or saving for retirement.
We get it, though. Not all of us keep everything neatly filed, color-coded, alphabetized and prioritized. And you don’t have to be.
Here are seven things you can do — in seven days — to get your finances under control in 2021:
Day 1: Invest $1 in the Stock Market
Take a look at the Forbes Richest People list, and you’ll notice almost all the billionaires have one thing in common — they own another company.
But if you work for a living and don’t happen to have millions of dollars lying around, that can sound totally out of reach. That’s why a lot of people use the app Stash. It lets you be a part of something that’s normally exclusive to the richest of the rich — buying pieces of other companies for as little as $1.
That’s right — you can invest in pieces of well-known companies, such as Amazon, Google or Apple, for as little as $1.**
The best part? When these companies profit, so can you. Some companies even send you a check every quarter for your share of the profits, called dividends.
It takes two minutes to sign up, plus Stash will give you a $5 sign-up bonus once you deposit $5 into your account.***
Day 2: See if You Can Get More Money From This Company
Here’s the deal: If you’re not using Aspiration’s debit card, you’re missing out on free money. And who doesn’t want free money?
Yep. A debit card called Aspiration gives you up to a 10% kickback every time you swipe.
Need to buy groceries? Free money.
Need to fill up the tank? Bam. Free money again.
You were going to buy these things anyway — why not get free money in the process?
Enter your email address here and link your bank account to see how much extra cash you can get with a free Aspiration account. Don’t worry. Your money is FDIC insured and under a military-grade encryption. That’s just nerd talk for “this is totally safe.”
Day 3: Ask This Website to Help Pay Your Credit Card Bill This Month
If you have credit card debt, you know. The anxiety, the interest rates, the fear you’re never going to escape…
And the truth is, your credit card company doesn’t really care. It’s just getting rich by ripping you off with high interest rates. But a website called AmOne wants to help.
If you owe your credit card companies $50,000 or less, AmOne will match you with a low-interest loan you can use to pay off every single one of your balances.
The benefit? You’ll be left with one bill to pay each month. And because personal loans have lower interest rates (AmOne rates start at 3.99% APR), you’ll get out of debt that much faster. Plus: No credit card payment this month.AmOne won’t make you stand in line or call your bank, either. And if you’re worried you won’t qualify, it’s free to check online. It takes just two minutes, and it could help you pay off your debt years faster.
Day 4: Cancel Your Car Insurance
When was the last time you shopped around for car insurance? Was it more than six months ago? If so, you’re probably overpaying — by hundreds of dollars. Yep. Experts say you should compare rates twice a year to get the best deal.
That being said, shopping for car insurance is a pain, which is why we like using a free website called Savvy. It helps you find the best rates — in just 30 seconds. In fact, it saves people an average of $826/year.
All you have to do is connect your current insurance, then Savvy will search hundreds of insurers for a better price on the same coverage. It’ll even help you cancel your old policy and get you a refund from your current insurer. Best yet: This is totally free.
If you find a better deal, you can switch right away and don’t have to wait for your next renewal or even your next payment.
Day 5: Add up to 300 Points to Your Credit Score
When it comes to your credit score, it’s important to stay organized and keep tabs on it. After all, it’ll play an essential role in any big purchase you want to make — whether that’s a home or a car.
So if you’re looking to get your credit score back on track — or even if it is on track and you want to bump it up — try using a free website called Credit Sesame.
Within two minutes, you’ll get access to your credit score, any debt-carrying accounts and a handful of personalized tips to improve your score. You’ll even be able to spot any errors holding you back (one in five reports have one).
James Cooper, of Atlanta, used Credit Sesame to raise his credit score nearly 300 points in six months.* “They showed me the ins and outs — how to dot the I’s and cross the T’s,” he said.
Want to check for yourself? Enter your email address here and within 90 seconds Credit Sesame will show you what to do.
Day 6: The Easiest Day of the Challenge — Give Your Family up to $1M
A million bucks? Easy? Those probably aren’t two thoughts you normally put together. But seriously, today is the easiest day of our challenge.
It sounds too good to be true, but a company called Bestow could help you do this using something called term life insurance. This is something you can check off your list in minutes.
You can get a free quote from Bestow until you’re 54 years old, but the sooner you take care of this, the cheaper it will be. (We hear some people are getting it for as little as $8 a month.)
Today was meant to be simple, so go ahead and take the rest of the day off.
Day 7: Get a Free $225/Month for Watching Short Videos
If we told you you could get free money just for watching videos on your computer, you’d probably laugh.It’s too good to be true, right? But we’re serious.
A website called Swagbucks will pay you to watch short video clips online. One minute you might watch someone bake brownies and the next you might get the latest updates on Kardashian drama.
All you have to do is choose which videos you want to watch and answer a few quick questions about them afterward. Brands pay Swagbucks to get these videos in front of viewers, and it passes a cut onto you.
Swagbucks won’t make you rich, but it’s possible to get up to $225 per month watching these videos. It’s already paid its users more than $200 million.
It takes about one minute to sign up, and you’ll immediately earn a $5 bonus to get you started.
**The Penny Hoarder is a Paid Affiliate/partner of Stash. This material is not intended as investment advice and is not meant to suggest that any securities are suitable investments for any particular investor. Investment advice is only provided to Stash customers.
***You’ll also bear the standard fees and expenses reflected in the pricing of the ETFs in your account, plus fees for various ancillary services charged by Stash.