See how bi-weekly payments can make it easier to pay off loans fast.
One of the simplest (and least known) ways to eliminate debt quickly is to switch to a bi-weekly payment schedule. It sounds a little counterintuitive, but this actually means you make two extra payments every year. As a result, you can eliminate your debt faster and save money on interest charges. This is most commonly seen with mortgage debt.
How bi-weekly payments work
- With a monthly payment schedule, you make 12 payments in a year.
- When you go to a bi-weekly payment schedule, the payment amount is about half of what you pay on a monthly schedule.
- HOWEVER, on a bi-weekly payment schedule, you make 26 payments in a year (52 weeks, divided by 2).
- So while your payments are roughly half of what you pay on a monthly schedule because you make 26 payments instead of 24, you wind up paying more debt off every year.
Paying off your debt faster means fewer months where interest charges can be applied by the lender. Since interest is added at the end of every month, debt restructuring means fewer months where interest charges are tacked onto your total bill.
Monthly vs Bi-weekly Payments Calculator
Why bi-weekly payments are effective
Think about it – for every year you use a bi-weekly schedule, that’s one less month of added interest on your loan or that line of credit. That can be a huge difference on loans like your mortgage. For a 4-year auto loan, that would mean you could finish paying the full amount off in the first few months of that last year. With a mortgage, you could save years on the payoff, which would save you thousands on added interest.
The calculator below is designed to help you assess the value of moving to a bi-weekly payment schedule on a loan. Just enter the current balance on the loan and the remaining term (the number of months to final payoff). If this looks like a good option, call your lender to see if they’ll allow you to adjust your payment schedule.