There’s a point where an unexpected one-off expense becomes unmanageable – where the bill is just too much money to fork out from a single pay packet, but an expense that needs urgent attention nonetheless. Spreading the cost over two or three months would avoid financial turmoil — so what options are available when you don’t have spare cash to hand?
Four ways to pay for unexpected costs
Visit the Bank of Mum ‘n’ Dad
Family and friends might be able to help with money problems. Although undoubtedly the cheapest option you’re going to find, it’s also my least favourite, as it can put people in compromising positions and lead to awkward situations. Do you really want to divulge your financial situation to others anyhow?
Use credit cards
If you have a credit card with enough credit available then you’re onto a winner – just make sure you have a solid plan to pay it back as quick as possible. Draw up a schedule of repayments for yourself, including interest – and stick to it! Here’s an interest calculator you can use. Remember, credit card interest is amongst the highest you can pay, so don’t let the debt linger any longer than necessary.
Take advantage of your overdraft facility
An authorised overdraft might be an option, but don’t even think about allowing you account to go overdrawn if have no arrangement in place with your bank, because unauthorised overdraft charges can be financially crippling. Like with credit cards, ensure you are strict about clearing the balance as quick as you can. Not only will you be saving on fees, you just never know when the next financial emergency will strike, and it goes without saying that one emergency is easier to deal with than two.
Take out a 3 month loan
A 3 month payday loan can provide a lifeline if you don’t have any other kind of backup in place. Websites like Instant Lolly offer 3 month loans online, which make it easy to apply and possible to get cash in your bank within an hour or so. What’s more, when you take out a 3 month loan such as this, the lender will organise to take repayments automatically, so all you need to do it ensure you have enough funds to cover the cost of the 3 instalments on the agreed dates – make it simple for yourself by scheduling payments just after your pay dates.
Put yourself on a financial diet
Whichever financial solution you decide is right for you, a good tip is to put yourself on a financial diet until you pay the debt off. I’m not suggesting you cut back on essentials, but we all tend to spend frivolously on something or other without necessarily realising it. Make a list of last months non-essential spend – you might be surprised!
You don’t always need to do without completely — think of some creative solutions. For instance, if you normally have a couple of takeaways per week, consider cutting down to just one treat and cook cheaper, healthier meals at home the rest of the time – or if you’re feeling cheeky, suggest having a catchup with parents or friends and invite yourself round for tea at their house once in a while 🙂