These tutorials describe the general process of setting up your debt snowball in Pay Off Debt for the iPhone and iPod Touch.
The first time you use the Pay Off Debt application, it will open to the Settings screen, which allows you to set up the app. You can also access the Settings screen at any time by tapping the Settings in the navigation bar at the bottom of the app.
Setting Up the Debt Snowball
- Tap the Configure Snowball option on the Settings screen.
You will be taken to the Configure Snowball screen.
If you will be using the debt snowball method (which is the recommended method), leave the Snowball set to its default setting of On and continue to step three.
If you will not be using the debt snowball method, tap Snowball and then tap Off.
Note: When you use the debt snowball method, your debts will almost always be paid off faster than they would be without it. That’s why it’s the recommended method.
- Tap Additional Amount.
A keyboard will appear.
Enter the additional amount that you intend to send to the first debt in your list each month in the Additional Amount field, and then tap Done.
This is the amount you can send in addition to your set minimum payment. If you will not be sending an additional amount, leave it set to zero. You can change this later at any time.
- Tap Sort Debts by to choose the order for your snowball.
Tap the desired option (Lowest Balance, Highest Interest Rate, or Custom Order.
Note: If you choose Custom Order you will need to return to the Sort Debts by screen to arrange your debts after you have entered them.
- Tap the Back arrow on the Configure Snowball screen.
You will return to the Settings screen.
- Tap the Add Debt option on the Settings screen to begin adding your debts.
You will be taken to the Add Debt screen.
- Tap the Name field and type in the name of your debt.
- Tap the Type option and choose the type of debt.
(This sets the icon that will be associated with the debt. If you select the Mortgage/HELOC type, it will also add an additional field to the Debts screen.)
Tap the Amount Owed field and enter the amount that you owe on the debt right now.
Both the Amount Owed and the Current Balance fields will automatically be filled in with the same amount.
Note: The amount in the Current Balance field will automatically change later as your record payments to the debt. You won’t have to change anything in this field unless the balance on your debt increases later on for some reason. See Editing an Existing Debt if you need to know how to do that.
- Tap the Interest Rate (APR) field and enter the interest rate for the debt.
- Tap the Due Date field and enter the date of the month when the debt is due.
(For example, if your debt is due on the 1st, enter 1. If it’s due on the 18th, enter 18.)
Tap the Minimum Monthly Payment field and enter the amount of your minimum monthly payment.
Tip: For ease of use and to get out of debt faster, do not adjust the minimum payment that you send to each individual debt over time, even if your statement says you can send less or offers to let you skip a payment.
If the debt is not a Mortgage/HELOC type debt, skip this step.
Tap the Amount of Minimum Monthly Payment that Goes to Escrow field and enter the amount of your minimum monthly payment that goes to escrow.
(For example, if your mortgage payment is $1200, but $200 is set aside for escrow by your mortgage company, you would enter $200 here. If you don’t have escrow taken out, enter $0.)
- Tap Done.
The keyboard will close.
- Tap Save.
The debt will be added.
- If you have additional debts to enter, tap the Settings (gear-shaped) icon on the Debts screen and repeat Adding Debts steps 1-10 for each debt.
- If you have chosen Custom Order for your snowball, once you are done adding your debts:
a. Tap Configure Snowball.
b. Drag the debts shown on the Configure Snowball screen into the desired order.
c. Tap the back arrow.
Skip this step.
- Tap the Debts icon in the navigation bar to see the listing of your debts and to begin using the app.
Additional Setup Options
Changing the Currency (Optional)
- If you want to change the currency to something other than the default of dollars, tap the Currency option on the Settings screen.
You will be taken to the Currency screen.
- Tap the desired currency.
You will be returned to the Settings screen and the currency will be set. Note: Only one currency can be set at a time.
Adding Email Addresses (Optional)
- If you wish to enter up to 4 different email addresses to send your snowball information to, tap the Email Addresses option on the Settings screen.
You will be taken to the Email Addresses screen.
- Tap the + icon.
A keyboard will appear.
- Enter your email address and tap Done.
- Repeat steps 2 and 3 for up to three more email addresses.
- When you are finished entering email addresses, tap the back arrow to return to the Settings screen.
Setting a Password (Optional)
WARNING! If you set a password and later forget it, I have no way of getting it back. You will not be able to get to your debts again if you forget it, so please use this feature with care.
- Tap Password on the Settings screen.
You will be taken to the Password screen.
- Tap On.
A new screen will appear.
- Tap New Password.
A keyboard will appear.
- Enter the desired password.
- Tap Confirm Password and enter the desired password again.
- Tap Done in the top right corner of the screen.
A message box will appear saying, “Are you sure you want to set a password? Lost passwords cannot be recovered, and your data will be inaccessible.”
- If you have changed your mind and do not want to set a password, tap Cancel twice. Otherwise, tap Done to set the password.
Note: Once you have set a password, a Change Password option will appear on the Settings screen. You can tap that option at any time to change your password to something else, or you can tap the Password option again to remove the password.
Setting Payment Reminders (Optional)
The Payment Reminders option can be used to notify you of approaching due dates for your debts. Note: Payment reminders will only appear (if on) prior to the due date. Once the due date has passed, the reminders will no longer appear. Payment Reminders can be used in conjunction with the Modify Due Dates option.
- Tap the Payment Reminders option on the Settings screen.
You will be taken to the Payment Reminders screen.
- Choose how far in advance of the due dates you would like to be notified, if the app is opened. Tap either 1 Day, 3 Days, 5 Days, or 1 Week.
You will be returned to the Settings screen.
- If you would to temporarily advance due dates that would otherwise fall on a weekend or a non-existant date, tap the Modify Due Dates option on the Settings screen.
You will be taken to the Modify Due Dates screen.
- Tap On.
Due date modification will be turned on, and you will be returned to the Settings screen.