Introducing The Debt Snowflake Challenge

Would you like 2012 to be the year that you pay off your debt or make a significant dent in it?  Would you like to free up the money that currently goes to debt repayment and use it for something else?  Would you like the security that comes from being debt free?  If so, consider joining me in The Debt Snowflake Challenge.

As many people know, my husband and I are on a mission to pay off all of our debt, both credit card and student loan, by April 2013.  Considering our income and our debt load, this goal will take a significant amount of discipline.  Thus far we have made great progress since we became gazelle intense in mid-October, paying down several thousand dollars.  Part of the reason we were able to make such strides is because we snowflaked agressively.

What Is Snowflaking?

Snowflaking is when you take any extra money you make or unexpected money you receive and apply it to your debt immediately.  This money is in addition to your regular monthly payment.  In just the last nine weeks of 2011, we snowflaked $3,662 on our debt; that equates to $406 extra applied to debt EACH week!  The key to this strategy is to apply it to the debt immediately so you don’t have the opportunity to spend it.

What Is The Debt Snowflake Challenge?

If you decide to join The Debt Snowflake Challenge, you are deciding to get proactive with your debt.  Not only will you be paying your monthly payments, but you will be dedicating yourself to find new ways to make additional income such as taking on an additional job or selling stuff on eBay or Craigslist.  You will be agreeing to post weekly on your blog to report how you are doing or to come here and leave your progress in the comments.

How to Join The Debt Snowflake Challenge

To officially join The Debt Snowball Challenge, you will need to do two things:

First, declare that you will no longer accrue new debt.  That means put away those credit cards and quit using them.  It is hard to pay down debt when you are accruing new debt.

Second, set a goal for how much you would like to snowflake on your debt in 2012 and how you plan to earn the money.

Then, every week, come back here on Friday and report your progress.

Don’t spend another year deep in debt, unsure where the money for payments will come from and how you will survive financially.  All of us, working together snowflaking, can make a significant dent, or even better, achieve debt freedom in 2012.  Are you with me?  If so, show your commitment by commenting on this post.


  1. I REALLY, REALLY want to give this a try. You’ve inspired me beyond words with this blog – thank you!

    • I use this site and one called glossymoney it is possible without more income to pay down debt and not acquire more I have been using tricks I learned off of glossymoney to spend less and I put all the extra to the debt like I have learned here. I have paid off 23K I am almost debt free and I did it all one penny at a time.

  2. Count me in. I am all set to start January 1 and have decided that it is time to get rid of debt and get my life back!

  3. I’m in! I’m ready to get this going. I have spent this morning wandering around the house, looking for junk to put on ebay.

  4. Do we qualify is we have been doing this for close to two years now? In fact, last year we managed to ‘snowflake’ over $40,000. If we qualify count us in.

    • $40,000! That is fabulous. What are some of your techniques? Yes, we would be glad to have you join the challenge.

      • Well, we agreed that all income above our usual monthly earning will go to pay off the negative wealth (this is how I refer to the dreaded debt). The rest is really working most of the time and a particualr bank misbehaving and not getting away with it.

        I am really interested in your new blog though (with CFM) – I have not earned a penny/cent from my blog. Blogging is for fun and on top and above the rest – I say that ‘I write rubbish for money’ but this just so it doesn’t appear very important. It is good rubbish.

  5. Count me in too! I need to start repaying my student loans aggressively. 🙂

  6. I try to snowflake as often as possible. My goal is to pay off more than 50% of my outstanding debt balance in 2012. It’s going to be tough but doable…

  7. I’d love to participate in this challenge. However, I’m not in a position to do so this year 🙁

    Great idea though!

  8. Im In. Time to lose this debt and get those figures back into the black. I owe $12,874 but in twelve months i will owe nothing!!!

  9. I am excited to join in too!

  10. I’m definitely in–I need someone to keep me accountable to this. We can’t very well expect to become missionaries to Africa if we still carry $20,000 in (mostly student loan) debt!

  11. Do mortgages count? That is our only current dept right now….

  12. Count me in ! This site is the best! This really works! I do have to use the other site too, but with many ideas here we have made massive differences. I get a lot of my small techniques from glossymoney.

  13. I’m in! This is the first year that I feel like we have a solid plan going into the New Year. I have outlined our plan here…

    Can’t wait to get started!

    • It sounds like putting half the extra on debt and half on savings is a good compromise. Then you can both feel good about your financial plan. You may not get all the debt paid off this year, but I hope you make a good dent in it!

  14. I am really hoping to make some significant progress on our mortgage. Count me in.

  15. I’m in! I’m setting a goal of $4000 in snowflaking!

  16. Count me in! I need to put my little streams of income to work! We are fritter’s a dollar here and there and poof its gone!

  17. It sounds like a great way to start the new year. We are about 22000 dollars in debt….would love to get rid of at least 35 percent of that to be debt free by January 2014! We paid off over 1500 this year by not eating out as much[limit to one time a week]. going to try to make it one time a month this year…

  18. I am in. Thinking of snowflake ideas that will work for me

  19. Wow this is a great idea.

  20. We’ve been doing this on our mortgage, and have paid off nearly $25,000 of it so far. We have just over $36K to go, so we’re trying to hit May as our goal.

  21. Melissa,

    This is an awesome plan to kick start the new year! Looking forward to seeing everyone’s progress on Fridays!

  22. I need a little extra beyond my monthly savings in my grad school fund — the monthly amounts add up to paying off my student loans for 4 semesters of tuition by the time it starts to accrue interest, but I also need to buy books and pay cash for summer terms! I’m snowflaking everything that comes to me (like profits from selling books on Amazon, answering surveys online, or birthday gifts) toward grad school, and everything that comes to my household (selling stuff around the house, savings in utilities, wedding gifts) toward a vacation fund for our 2014 road trip.

    • Sounds like a good goal! I wish I had the income I do now when my husband was in grad school last year; if so, we wouldn’t have so much student loan debt now.

  23. I would love to join this challenge too! I am determined to pay off my credit cards and 1 major financial mistake this year. I will still have student loans and car payment, but I can live with those.

  24. Melissa J. says:

    This may be a dumb question, but is there someplace that I am supposed to officially join the challenge? I’m sorry if I’m not finding it.


    • No. You can just jump in this week if you would like. You can write a post stating what you plan to use the snowflake money for or how you plan to raise the money, or you can simply report your progress this week.

  25. Melissa J. says:

    While I have worked a 2nd job for quite a while now, I am finally in a position where I don’t have to rely on that money just to make it. The money from my 2nd job is going straight to debt snowflakes. As soon as I know how much my check is going to be, I immediately send that amount to bills.

    • Congrats on the improved income and budget. You are probably even more motivated to work now, knowing that all of the money goes to paying down debt.

  26. We’re doing a version of this too at our house! I didn’t know about your challenge until now. And yes, I’m blogging about the I think it’s far to say we’ve joined the challenge unknowingly. Best of luck to you! (now I’m off to read the rest of the challenge post)

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