Funny how you never really pay attention to the financial advice you read online – until something goes wrong. No matter what your financial goals are (building credit, paying off debt, boosting savings, etc), one of the steps to achieving those goals is to create an emergency stash. This is a savings account where you store cash that can be used when you’re in a bind. The idea sounds convenient and simple, but for whatever reason, you just haven’t gotten around to doing it.
Now, here you sit in the middle of madness trying to figure out how to hold it together. You need cash fast, and quite frankly, you have no idea how to get it. Luckily, there are ways around this (although you really need to start that emergency savings):
Take out a small loan – some things just can’t wait even another few days to be resolved. If you’re dealing with a serious emergency that will only get worse with time, you should take out a small loan. Rather than try and head to a bank you can apply for installment loans online 24/7. They have fewer eligibility requirements and give you an approval decision in minutes. If you qualify, you could have as much as $1250 in your checking account by the next business day.
Ask someone you know – again, if the emergency can’t wait, or you’ve been turned down for a loan, another option is to ask someone you know to lend a helping hand. Just be sure you don’t procrastinate on paying them back as this can tarnish your relationship and possibly put them in a jam as well.
Do it yourself – if the issue is something like a plumbing issue in the home or bad brake pads on the car, you can handle the problem yourself. It’s a lot cheaper to purchase your own parts and complete the task – as long as you know what you’re doing. If it’s too complicated, it’s economically wise to contact your mechanic or plumber for assistance.
Earn quick cash – thanks to the internet there are a lot of ways you could earn fast cash in your spare time. Joining an online opinion panel could generate a few hundred dollars. You could also check online classified ads for people in your neighborhood looking for a helping hand (in exchange for cash, of course).
Sacrifice for a few weeks – have you already budgeted your lunch money for the month? Well, if you have an emergency you may need to use those funds and sacrifice by taking your lunch to work the next couple of weeks.
Once you’ve got the emergency handled, you need to make sure this doesn’t happen again. Clearly, having emergency savings would have helped you out of a jam without any extra hoops to jump through. So, if you want to prevent or reduce the chances of being in a jam and not having the cash, here are some solutions to building a rainy day fund:
Cut unnecessary spending – anything you really don’t need, cancel it or close the account. If you have poor spending habits like shopping or eating out, you’ll need to curve them for a while as well.
Save the change – start paying for things in cash again. When the cashier gives you change, take the change and add it to a jar for savings.
$1 and $5 challenge – believe you can’t save a lot of money for a rainy day fund? Most people feel the same way. Truth is, there are several ways you can squeeze even more money out of your budget. For example, saving your $1 and $5. When paying with cash, keep the ones and five’s in an account.
When things are going according to plan, storing money in an account for a rainy day seems like something you can put off. The only problem is, life can happen in an instant. It’s great to know what options you have if you’re in a jam without an emergency stash, but you should also take precautions for the future. Once you’ve taken care of the immediate problem, begin using the advice above to put up enough money to cover whatever may come your way (well, most of it anyway).