While you hope that you never experience a financial emergency, the reality is that most people will at some point in their lives. This could be a job loss, a big expense you weren’t prepared for or any number of other issues. Regardless of what the emergency is, you’re going to need to a way to pay for your bills until your financial situation has improved. Here are three potential options for surviving a financial emergency.
The best option for surviving a financial emergency is to have a suitable emergency fund ready, without a doubt. When you don’t need to borrow money, it makes your situation far less stressful. Now, if you’re dealing with a financial emergency at this time and you don’t have an emergency fund saved, then you’ll need to move on to one of the other two options. Once your situation stabilizes, it’s a good idea to put together an emergency fund.
The amount you should have in your emergency fund depends quite a bit on your typical monthly expenses and how difficult it would be for you to find work after a job loss. The usual recommendation is about three to six months of living expenses, but an emergency fund calculator can help you come up with an exact number.
Saving up that kind of money takes some time, especially if you’re starting from scratch, but the key is to turn saving money into a habit. Here’s how:
A credit card can be a convenient option for surviving a financial emergency, and you can use your existing credit cards or apply for a new one. Credit cards do have a couple drawbacks, though.
The first problem with credit cards is that you can’t pay for everything with them – at least not yet. While you can use your credit card for more bills than ever, you still typically can’t pay for your rent or mortgage with a credit card, unless you use a third-party service and pay a small service fee.
Another issue with credit cards is that they tend to have high interest rates, at least compared to loans. Fortunately, if your credit score is high enough, you may qualify for a 0-percent annual percentage rate (APR) credit card. During the intro period on these cards, you don’t get charged any interest, although you will as soon as that intro period ends. Still, intro periods can last for a year or longer, giving you plenty of time to get your financial situation sorted out and pay back what you borrowed.
There are all kinds of loan options on the market, including:
Of course, not all loans are created equal, and the right loan for you will depend on your situation. Home equity loans tend to have the lowest interest rates, although you’ll need to have a home with sufficient equity you can borrow against. Those loans and personal loans can also take time to process.
If you need money right away, you’ll likely have better luck with car title loans Tampa. These are also a great option if you have a poor credit score, because with vehicle title loans, there’s no credit check required. The funding process doesn’t take long, and you could conceivably get your loan money on the day you submit your application.
Make sure you check the terms of any loan to see that they work for you. For example, if you’re not sure when your financial emergency will be over, you may want to choose a loan with a longer term.
As stressful as it may be, surviving a financial emergency isn’t some impossible task. It just requires you to cut your expenses for the time being and choose the best funding option to get by during these tough times.