This is a collaborative post by Ellie Jo.
There are few things more terrifying than an unexpected expense or bill catching you off guard, which you have no way of paying. Regardless of how organized you are with your finances, if your car breaks down, an appliance stops working or a big bill that you hadn’t accounted for comes through your door- you can end up stuck unless you have enough savings. Having savings is always beneficial and provides a buffer against these kinds of situations. However, that’s not helpful advice if you’ve been hit with a large bill and have no money to cover it! Here are a few things you could do.
Try and Negotiate
With some bills or expenses, you simply won’t be able to negotiate. If it’s a broken down car or appliance, for example, then you will have no choice but to pay for repair costs or replace entirely. However, when it comes to bills, you can often negotiate a payment plan that suits you. Creditors and utility companies know that they can’t get blood out of a stone. So, they would rather agree to a payment plan that you can afford than for you to stop paying entirely. Some companies might ask for expenditures and income form for you to prove what you can afford. While others will be happy to set up a plan based on what you tell them. Either way, don’t hide from the expense, give the creditor or company a call and explain your situation.
Many of us have hundreds, maybe even thousands in unused possessions lying around in the home. Things like old mobile handsets, tablets, computers and consoles can sit in drawers when we upgrade our technology. CDs, DVDs, scrap metal and jewelry and clothes all have apps and websites with buyers waiting. Have a declutter and sell anything you’re not using. Then, use the money towards the expense and you might be surprised by how much you raise.
Find Out If You’re Entitled to Help
Depending on your circumstances, you could be entitled to help from the government. If you’ve been in an accident or are unable to work due to an illness, for example, you could be given money to help you. It has been said that large companies like MetLife deny benefit claims, however, if you have been unfairly turned away then a disability attorney could secure you the money that’s owed to you. If you have children or are on a low income then you could be entitled to money from the state- it’s worth looking into.
We’re all guilty of wasting money, it might be a dollar here or a few dollars there but it all adds up. If you have any luxuries like tv, music or magazine subscriptions, then pause these until you’re in a better position financially. Make cutbacks on your grocery shop, just switching to own brand products can save you a heap of cash. Tighten the belt and make some cutbacks, you can rework your budget to free up some much-needed money.