Saturday, December 1, 2012

Stressful Life Events & Options Every Family Can Consider

A death or serious illness in the family, natural disaster, loss of employment...these and many other tragedies force millions of families each year into financial hardship. It's easy for experts to tell us how much money we ought to save for times like these, but when you're barely making enough to get by, it's impossible to save ahead. 

Whatever your family faces, there are steps to take to avoid disaster. Remember, you're not the first person to walk this road, and you won't be the last. Here are a few ideas for getting through a tough financial crisis. 

Request an Extension on Utility Bills



Image via Flickr by brendan.wood 

Most power companies and utility companies will work with you on payments as long as you stay in contact with them. Usually, they start shutting off power, water and gas when people don't communicate with them or try to hide. In the majority of cases, utility companies are willing to work with families in crisis.

Call before the due date. Don't wait until the payment is late to make arrangements. Tell them exactly what's going on (you lost your job, your child is in the hospital, a fire damaged your home, etc.) and let them know when you expect to have payment. If you're not able to pay the entire balance, offer them partial payments until you're caught up.

Check Local Government Resources


Image via Flickr by kafka4prez

Many families don't realize how many government programs exist to help in cases just like yours. While it's humbling to have to accept government assistance, remember that those who pay taxes are entitled to benefit from it. Start with your city's human resources department and health department. What type of emergency you're facing will determine what kinds of help you qualify for. Your family may qualify for food stamps, free or reduced cost health care and more.

Check With Private Resources in the Community


Image via Flickr by Baltimore Heritage

In addition to public programs, many private organizations offer help to families in need. Many groups offer help with utility bills, mortgage or rent payments, clothing and other necessities.

Food pantries are an excellent resource for families in crisis. Some churches will even bring the food to you if you don't have transportation. A month's worth of groceries for the family might free up enough funds to get you through your current crisis.

Consider a Payday Loan


Image via Flickr by jollyUK

Sometimes it isn't food or utility bills you need. When you need cash fast and don't qualify for traditional loans, consider a payday loan. Payday loans are available anytime of the day or night, including holidays. Most payday lenders don't run credit checks, so it's an ideal option if your credit is already damaged. These loans are also fast. When you're in a situation and need money immediately, you can get the money the same day.

Never Underestimate the Power of the Human Spirit


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The last thing most of us want to do is be a burden to friends and family members. But these resources can be a blessing to you and you can be a blessing to them. Likely, if the situation were reversed, you'd want to help a loved one in their time of need. Allow them to help you just as you'd want to lend a hand to them in the same situation.


About Me

Work-At-Home Mom who quit years of corporate life to take care three kids full time. Fond of cooking, reading books and determined to master housekeeping. Created this blog to share about career, job, human resource, hobbies, sports and travel

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