Ambushed By Surprise Costs?

While budgeting and setting aside emergency savings can protect us from many costs, some of us can still get caught off-guard by surprise expenses. Car repairs, home repairs, medical bills and emergency travel are a few examples. There are a few ways that you can deal with these costs. This post explains some of the best steps to take. 

Prioritize important expenses

If this surprise cost has meant that you cannot pay for certain scheduled costs, you may have to prioritize the most important ones. You may be able to delay certain costs that aren’t important. Ideally, you don’t want to miss paying any of your bills due to credit score damage and late payment fees, but if you can’t afford to pay them all, you should work out which bills can be delayed or frozen while providing the least penalties. 

Negotiate a payment plan

You may be able to make your surprise cost more affordable by paying for it in installments. Some car repair centers, clinics and tradesmen will provide payment plans, but you may have to ask about them to be offered them. This could allow you to pay a small amount now and the rest later without interest. Payment plans may also be possible to set up for certain scheduled bills if you warn creditors in advance. 

Ask for a cash advance from your employer

Some employers may be willing to pay you wages in advance if it helps you out. Just be wary that you won’t then receive this money on payday. Cash advances are easier to offer on a salary, but you may still be able to get them if you’re on hourly pay – you’ll just need to be willing to work a certain amount of hours to make up for the cash advance amount before you can be paid again. 

Sell unwanted items

There may be items that you can sell that day by placing them on Facebook Marketplace or taking them to second hand stores. Consider items in your home that are gathering dust or cluttering up the place. Selling these unwanted items could help you raise the money necessary to pay for your surprise cost. 

Look into fast loans

There are same day online loans out there that you can apply for if you need some cash fast. Loans are not an ideal situation because they can come with interest rates (and interest rates for some emergency loans can be very high). But a loan could be better than having to fall into arrears with certain bills, as it will likely have less impact on your credit score. Just make sure that you can pay back the loan repayments. 

Reach out to family and friends

Family and friends may be able to help you out with surprise costs if you have tried all the above and are still falling short. In fact, it may be better to borrow money from family members or friends instead of taking out a loan in some cases. Just make sure that you can pay back any money you borrow so that you don’t strain the relationships around you.