December 18th, 2008
Ten Ways to Handle Financial Emergencies
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For most people, the thing that launches them into credit trouble in the first place is an unexpected financial emergency. Individuals who pay their bills on time, people who use credit cards wisely and people who always keep up with their mortgages can suddenly be thrown into a complete financial crisis when a surprise strikes them. Here are ten ways that you can prepare for and handle financial emergencies.
1 – Plan ahead in order to make a difference.
Start a savings and make provisions for whatever may occur. You should put a portion of every pay check into a savings account.
2 – Expect the unexpected so that you may plan and prepare accordingly.
You should be prepared for every scenario. Plan for the worst, so that you can handle anything that may come your way.
3 – Pay yourself first rather than waiting until the end of the month to put money into your savings.
Putting the money into savings now will ensure you do not spend it easily through out the month. Otherwise, you may not be able to save when the time comes.
4 – Increase your income if you are having trouble paying your expenses.
This may entail finding a better job, or supplanting your income through another job. You may also be entitled to a raise at your current job.
5 – Sell off some assets to accrue extra income if you are having trouble paying your expenses.
This can be as small as a garage sale or as large as selling one of two cars. Having stuff is pointless if you are unable to pay for rent or utilities.
6 – Borrow against your home if you absolutely have to, so that you can pay off emergency expenses without allowing them to overwhelm you and put you further into debt.
The equity in your home should be used as a last resort, as you are putting your home at risk. It is your largest asset, however, so it can be helpful for a tight spot.
7 – Call on friends and relatives to see if you can get some financial assistance in your time of need.
Those close to you can provide the assistance you need. Everyone is connected and those close to you would help you; you would help them if the situation were reversed.
8 – Defer your retirement contributions, funneling the money toward a more important cause such as an emergency expense instead.
If you are unable to proceed in the now, planning for the future is worthless.
9 – Seek professional help if you cannot find any other way to deal with the emergency expense without putting yourself into debt.
There are experts out there who are specially trained just for this purpose. Do not ignore this important resource.
10 – Declare bankruptcy if there is no other option available for you to overcome the obstacles created by a financial emergency.
Bankruptcy is a government provided way to get out of debt and start anew, although it carries with it a stigma which will be hard to shake off of your credit report.
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