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5 Shrewd Secrets from Women Who’ve Fixed Credit, Paid Debt and Made Fortunes

Carson Kohler  |  December 11, 2019

Looking for some advice when it comes to managing your money? These women share their tips and secrets for financial success. You can even start using some of their strategies right now.

Sure, you can read money advice all over the internet, but what’s better than taking inspiration from real-life women?

No, we’re not just talking about financial gurus, millionaires and celebrities. We’re sharing stories from a mom of nine who overcame a job layoff, a single mom who’s setting her son up for success and a college grad who paid off $100,000 worth of debt — then started her own business.

They share their tips and secrets to making and saving money. You can even start using some of those strategies today.

Secret No. 1: You’re Not Stuck With Credit Card Debt Forever

Even if you have loads of credit card debt right now, that doesn’t mean you’ll have it forever. One of our favorite first steps in escaping credit card debt is to refinance it with a personal loan. It could help you repay your debt faster and save thousands of dollars in interest. 

If you’re not sure where to start looking, use a website called Fiona. It’ll match you with a low-interest loan. You can then use that loan to wipe out your credit card debt. Then you’re left with just one bill to pay every month.

We chatted with one San Francisco resident who struggled to make her monthly credit card payments. She faced a minimum monthly payment of $274 plus $154 in interest — plus a $99 annual credit card fee. She felt like she was on a treadmill of debt.

She decided to refinance with a personal loan, which saved her $14,000 in interest.

Oh, and Fiona won’t make you stand in line or call a 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 save you thousands of dollars.

Secret No. 2: You Can Leave Your Kids $1 Million — Without Being a Millionaire

If you’re a mom, you’ve probably worried about what’ll happen to your kids if something were to happen to you… That’s where life insurance can help ease your mind.

Before you start thinking you don’t have the time or money for a policy, look into your options through a company called Bestow. It offers policies for up to $1 million, and rates start at $5 a month. Your application shouldn’t take more than about five minutes.

You can change or cancel your plan at any time. Plus, the security of knowing your family is taken care of is priceless.

Single mom Rebekah Pearsall wanted to make sure her son would be financially secure if something happened to her. “Since my son doesn’t have a biological father in his life, I wanted to make sure he was secure if something were to ever happen to me,” she said.

Having life insurance has helped her sleep easier at night. Plus, it takes only a few minutes to get a free quote.

Secret No. 3: You Don’t Have to Have an MBA to Start a Business

Dream of starting your own business? Working your own hours? Making your own money? Being your own boss? Well, what’s stopping you?

Take notes from The Budget Mom.

You might not believe it but The Budget Mom, Kumiko Love, graduated college with $100,000 worth of debt — student loans, credit cards and medical bills. She tried so many budgeting methods, but nothing worked. So she gave up.

But then she started studying the psychology behind money, which gave her a renewed hope: She started viewing her situation through a positive lens. She combined several budgeting tactics and started logging her process on her blog, The Budget Mom.

And guess what? Love is now debt free and she recently quit her full-time job to focus on her seven-figure business, The Budget Mom.

Secret No. 4: You Can Increase Your Credit Score Hundreds of Points

It’s easy to become complacent with your credit score. It’s not necessarily something we “use” every day. And if you know it’s low, you might feel like you’ll never get above 700.

But have you thought about what happens when you want to buy a car? Or a house? That number will start to play a huge role in your life and your finances.

And here’s an unfortunate fact: Even if you’re doing everything right, your credit report could an error (one in five reports do) that’s holding you back. That’s why it’s important to keep an eye on things.

Thankfully, a free website called Credit Sesame gives you your credit score for free and helps you detect any errors on your report. If you find any, it’ll even help you dispute them.

Salome Buitureria, a working mom of nine in Louisiana, found a major error on her report — a supposed unpaid medical bill that had definitely been covered by Medicaid. Using Credit Sesame, Buitureria fixed the mistake and took additional steps to raise her credit score from 524 to nearly 700.* Now? She’s focused on buying a home.

It only takes about 90 seconds to get started with Credit Sesame.

Secret No. 5: Women Should Invest Differently Than Men

Did you know that women statistically get paid less, yet live longer?

That’s where Ellevest comes in.

With Ellevest, you can start investing with as little as $1. Plus, when you sign up through here, you’ll get a $25 bonus in your Ellevest account.*

When you sign up, Ellevest will build an investing plan just for you and your financial goals. It considers gender pay differences, any potential career breaks and overall lifespan. Even better? It invests your money in women-owned businesses.

This content is provided by The Penny Hoarder.

*The Ellevest The Penny Hoarder promotional offer is valid for the first 1,000 new clients of Ellevest who enter through this designated landing page. Clients who enroll and fund their non-retirement account will receive $25 added to their highest priority goal in their Ellevest account. Clients who enroll and fund their retirement account will receive a $25 Amazon gift card which can be redeemed by visiting Please review Gift Card Terms and Conditions prior to redemption. Ellevest is not responsible for lost Amazon Gift Cards. Ellevest’s processing time for depositing $25 into a client’s Ellevest account or delivery of a $25 Amazon gift card may be up to 60 days.
**Credit Sesame does not guarantee any of these results, and some may even see a decrease in their credit score. Any score improvement is the result of many factors, including paying bills on time, keeping credit balances low, avoiding unnecessary inquiries, appropriate financial planning and developing better credit habits.
Editor’s note: We maintain a strict editorial policy and a judgment-free zone for our community, and we also strive to remain transparent in everything we do. This post contains references and links to products from our partners. Learn more about how we make money.
Editor’s note: We maintain a strict editorial policy and a judgment-free zone for our community, and we also strive to remain transparent in everything we do. Posts may contain references and links to products from our partners. Learn more about how we make money.
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