It seems like bills are difficult to manage at the best of times, but when an unexpected one drops in the mailbox? That takes it to another level entirely. Suddenly, you’re wondering how you’ll be able to pay the expense and also afford to pay rent, buy food, and meet the costs of your other bills. But before you get too panicked about money, it’s important to remember that you do have options, even if it doesn’t instantly feel like it. Below, we take a look at some ways you can find the money to pay off an unwelcome surprise expense, be it a bill, broken boiler or car, or anything else that looks like it might leave you out of pocket.
Dip Into Savings
You don’t want to dip into your savings, but it may be necessary. There can be serious consequences from leaving bills unpaid, and if taking some money out of your savings is your only option, then you won’t have much of a choice. Hopefully, the bill won’t be too high, and you’ll be able to top up the account pretty quickly once its paid. It’s for reasons like this why experts recommend you have two savings accounts; one that is for actual savings, and one that is for emergency expenses.
Use Credit Card
It’s a bad idea to rely on your credit card for all of your expenses, but an emergency? That’s what they’re there for. Put the charge on your credit card. BUT make sure that you’ve paid off the balance by the time the next statement rolls around.
Make Some Extra Cash
You might think that all your money is accounted for, but this is rarely the case. It’s just your money is tied up in other things. If you have a smartphone, car, or home, then you’re worth more than what’s in your bank balance. If you have a bill that looks insurmountable, don’t go into crisis mode. Instead, think “I need to sell my phone for cash today.” The money that you raise might be enough to make the bill disappear! The same can be said for your car. While no-one wants to sell their car, if it’s that or financial difficulties, then it’s the right choice to make.
Tighten Your Belt
If you have a couple of weeks to pay the bill, then pause all spending. It’s amazing how much you can save in a matter of weeks just by living a Spartan life. Cut out all but the essential purchases, eat cheap meals, and your bank balance will barely drop.
Try to Haggle
Finally, remember the art of haggling. There’s a chance you can get the bill reduced, or can have the payment spread over a longer period. Many companies are receptive to this type of arrangement, even knocking some money off the amount. In any case, if you don’t ask, then you don’t get. They can only say no!
Pay Off an Unexpected Bill Quickly
The quicker you can pay off the bill, the better. If you don’t have an emergency fund for such situations, you may have to hustle or haggle to take care of the bill. Once it’s paid, you can move on. Then you can create a rainy day fund to eliminate the fear and overwhelm if an unexpected bill pops up again.