If you find yourself strapped for cash, don’t panic. There’s usually a way out of this situation, although you may have to deal with some temporary discomfort as you get through it. Remember that there’s always a light at the end of the tunnel, and the modern financial system is designed to prevent cases of people falling through the cracks and being left stranded without help.
At the same time, it takes some knowledge to navigate this system efficiently. You have to understand your full range of options for assistance, and know when the time is right to take advantage of each of them. Not all options are equal, and some will work out much better than others.
If you have any money saved up, now is obviously the right time to put it to good use. This might sound obvious, but many people put off dipping into their savings for far too long in situations where they need money urgently. And that’s a problem, because it often leads to resorting to alternative solutions that might put the person in an even more difficult situation.
That’s the whole point of savings in the first place – to help you pull through difficult moments without too much pain. It doesn’t make sense to save up a lot of money and never use it, so if you’ve been diligent about maintaining a good savings account, by all means dip into it if you can recover it quickly enough afterwards.
A loan is also a great option in many cases, even though some people treat the idea with suspicion. Sure, it has some negative implications if you fail to make your payments on time, but it has to work that way in order for the whole system to make sense in the first place. After all, lenders need to profit too, and they have to compensate for the risk that comes from dealing with people who might end up defaulting on their loans.
And unfortunately, defaulting does happen often in some segments of the lending market, and it’s a major problem for the industry. So if you want to point any fingers, look in the direction of those who take out loan after loan irresponsibly with no intention of ever paying them back.
Friends and Family
An alternative to a regular loan is asking friends and family for help. This can often be a much more viable option if you have the right contacts, but it also has some strings attached. Mostly, you will have to swallow your pride and admit to others that you have financial problems. Not everyone wants to go through that, and some people prefer to try dealing with the situation in an alternative way instead of admitting their problems.
But if things are really bad, this can be a more viable option than the alternatives. You just have to be absolutely sure that you can pay pack everything you’ve borrowed. After all, you don’t want to destroy your relationship with someone over some money, right?
Selling Unused Items
Do you have anything around the house that you don’t need anymore? Now might be a good time to do some spring cleaning and optimize your living space. Many people live with a strange attachment to some of their possessions, and it can be a harmful one for many reasons. For one thing, you’re limiting your living space by filling it up with useless clutter. You’re also limiting your financial potential by not selling off things that you aren’t using anymore.
Just be reasonable about this, and don’t sell things that you might need in the future. But as a general rule of thumb, if you haven’t even thought of something in the last year, then it’s probably a good candidate for your next cleaning session. It’s a good idea to make a list of these things and have it ready in advance, so that you’ll know exactly what you can sell off when the time comes. Many people do this with things they buy online, as it’s easy to keep track.
You generally have more options available for getting your hands on emergency money than you might think. Some of them might require you to go through difficult times, while others will come with some long-term strings attached. But in any case, it’s usually better to endure those things rather than dealing with the long-term repercussions of financial struggles. Many people overestimate their ability to resolve financial problems on their own, and make their situations progressively worse over time as a result. It’s a shame when you consider that in many of these cases, it’s just a matter of reaching out early enough and paying attention to your circumstances.