< 1 minute read|Published by FAIRWINDS

Crushing Debt with the Debt Snowball Method

You’ve made the decision to start taking down your debt! But where do you start? This method can help you start paying off your debt as soon as possible.

Series of snowballs.

You’ve made the decision… to start taking down your debt! But where do you begin? The key to eliminating your debt is by using the debt snowball method. The debt snowball can help you start paying off your debt and get you closer to financial freedom.

What is the debt snowball method?

The debt snowball method is designed to keep you motivated by focusing on your quicker wins first – paying off your debt with the lowest balances – and using that momentum to pay off your remaining debt.

How can I use the debt snowball method to pay off debt?

Let’s say you’ve accounted for an extra $500 out of your budget to focus on paying down your debt. How would you use the debt snowball method to pay off a personal loan, student loan, car loan, and credit card?*



Minimum Payment

Personal Loan




Car Loan




Credit Card




Student Loan




*Example is shown for illustrative purposes.

For the example above, here is what you need to do:

  1. Pay the minimum payment on all debts, then put the extra $500 toward quickly paying off the smallest balance: the personal loan.

  2. Once that’s paid off, take the extra $500 from your budget, plus the $50 minimum payment you previously paid for your personal loan, and add that to the $200 car loan minimum payment. Now $750 is funneled toward the car.

  3. Continue doing this until every balance is destroyed on the list.

Keep in mind: Regardless of which balance has the lowest rate, always pay off the smallest balance first. This can help you keep your momentum rolling (into a snowball!) as you pay off each outstanding balance.

Why should I make more than the minimum monthly payments?

Rather than making extra payments to pay off the balance faster, carrying balances could end up costing you hundreds – even thousands – of dollars in interest over time. Whenever you can, always make more than the minimum payments.

I’m ready to start taking down my balances! What should I do next?

Get your personalized month-to-month plan with our free debt snowball calculator to see how quickly you can chip away at each balance. This will also help you to keep track of your progress and stay in control of eliminating your debt.

By using the debt snowball method and following your personalized plan, you’ll be on your way to achieving financial freedom!

Check out more tips to help you achieve financial freedom faster, and find out your FAIRWINDS Money Milestone today. Your Money Milestone can help you find out where you’re at with your finances and how you can stay focused and motivated as you save more, eliminate debt, build wealth, and live generously.