Financial hardship can hit any individual or family at any time. Whether due to mismanagement, investment decisions that ended poorly or external factors out of your control, finding yourself in a hole can be stressful and debilitating. The loss of a job, illness or injury to yourself or a close family member, even the breakdown of a car are just a few of the many occurrences that can have a profound impact on your financial wellbeing. If you’re struggling to fight your way back to stability, here are a few suggestions that might make that process a little smoother:
1. Start small
Rather than subject yourself to the endless spiral of high-interest credit, look into small, fast loans at low interest that can provide you with quick cash that can help you out of a short-term jam. There is a growing number of not-for-profit and charitable organizations that offer such loans at drastically lower interest rates and with far more flexible repayment conditions than traditional banks or unscrupulous payday lenders. If you’re eligible, the ready source cash without the exorbitant price tag might be a significant blessing.
2. Break it down
When you look at your finances as a whole, it can be a stressful and intimidating ordeal. You can see the massive amounts of money leaving your account, and the small amount coming in. Even though the average American income has risen by 3.2 percent, for some, it’s just not enough. However, by breaking down your expenses into more manageable categories, you can develop strategies to address each individually, which can be far less overwhelming. Little by little, you will see things start to fall into place.
3. Take it slow
One fatal error that people make is thinking they can get on top of their finances fast, but it takes time. It’s important not to rush overcoming your financial hardship as you may make financial decisions that don’t work in your favor. Create a plan to pay down any debt gradually and stick fast to your budget. Try setting yourself smaller, short-mid term goals and then rewarding yourself for every achievement. This will help you stay motivated during a process that can take years.
4. Consider alternate income
The average American salary is $59,039 per year. While that seems like a lot, it pays to take into consideration that the cost of living is on the rise, especially when it comes to housing. If you find that even after cutting out luxuries and living on the very basics, you’re still unable to make ends meet, you might need to consider a secondary source of income. It might be a simple source, such as home tutoring, freelance copywriting, driving for Uber or letting out that spare room that nobody is using. It doesn’t have to be a long-term career move, but it may make all the difference.
5. Stop spending money
Some people use shopping as a form of therapy. It can relieve stress, and it’s exciting to bring home new items. However, with US credit card debt at a record high, it’s easy to see that this outlet can only deliver short-term happiness and long-term grief. Avoid using your credit card where possible. The spare money left over can then be put back into paying off your debts.
Financial hardship can hit anyone, but with help, you can get through it. Put steps in place to manage your finances, cut unnecessary spending, and consider small, fast loans for emergencies.