Where Can I Get Emergency Money?

We’ve all been in tough financial spotsĀ  throughout the years and sometimes we need to raise some emergency money really fast to make sure we can make our house payment, pay rent or even just get food on the table. If you are asking yourself “Where can I get emergency money fast?” this article is for you. It won’t be easy, it won’t be fun, but the aggressive strategies outlines below will help you “find” the extra cash until you can get back on your feet.

Big Money Problems
By Terry Rigg

Are you scared, worried, unsure of what to do, frustrated, embarrassed and humiliated because you can’t pay your bills and put food on the table?

What happened? Did you lose your job? Maybe you are sick or hurt and can’t work. Did an unexpected expense rip your finances to shreds? Maybe you just used those credit cards too much or bought a house that was more than you could really afford.

Whatever the reason you are experiencing Big Money Problems you have to know that for each and every problem there is a solution. Notice I didn’t say an Easy Solution.

If you have hit on hard times you are going to work very hard to find and implement that solution. You are going to do things that you don’t want to do and give up things you want to keep. Your pride is going to suffer in the process.

But you have to do something to solve the problem. And, quite frankly, most people never think it can happen to them so they aren’t prepared. When Big Money Problems hit they don’t have a clue where to start.

There are many actions that you need to take if you find you can’t pay all of your bills. Below is a list of the most important:

Sit down and evaluate your current situation. Determine how much money you are going to have and what your bills and expenses are. If you have more bills than you have money coming in you need to take action fast.

Take a hard look at all of your expenses to see where you can cut back. You may have to be brutal and cut out things you would like to keep, but this is necessary to provide the basic needs of your family. The most obvious and the ones that can produce immediate savings are:

  • Utilities
  • Phone (cell and land line)
  • Cable or satellite
  • Groceries
  • Canceling subscriptions to magazines
  • Obtaining free or reduced lunches for your school age children
  • Increase your insurance deductibles and remove any unnecessary coverage
  • Internet charges
  • Transportation
  • Quit dining out
  • Entertainment

Your next action would be to determine if there is anything that you could sell or cash in that may bring in some needed income. Here is a list of some of these actions:

  • Borrow from your 401k
  • Sell a second car or boat
  • Cash in life insurance policies
  • Collect unpaid debts owed to you by friends and family
  • Cash in any CDs, investments, etc.
  • Sell jewelry and other valuables

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Now that you have cut your expenses and sold or cashed in what you can it’s time to make a monthly payment plan. If you don’t have enough money to cover everything it is very important that you set your priorities to make sure the most important expenses are covered. Using the below priority list is mandatory if you want to make sure you financial problems don’t escalate:

Priority 1 – Food. Make sure you have enough food for your family. If you lost all of your income you will have to apply for Food Stamps or a similar program through your states Department of Social Services. This will include any necessary prescriptions and other health items. It may be necessary to apply for Food Stamps to make sure you have enough food to sustain your family.

Priority 2 – Shelter. After food, you need to make sure your family has a place to live. If you have only enough income to cover food and shelter, use it for that alone. If you lost all of your income, apply for government assistance to help or consider moving into less expensive housing. After you cover your house payment or rent, pay your utilities.

Priority 3 – Other Necessities. You may need your car to look for employment so consider making your car payment and put back money for gas. You may also need your phone so keep at least the basic service.

Priority 4 – Important Loans. If you have any money remaining after the items listed in the first three priorities, you should pay any other bills that may be necessary to allow you to accomplish what needs to be done to keep you going.

Distribute any money you may have after covering the above priorities between you other bills such as credit cards, phone bills, etc.

If you see that you are going to be late on any of your payments call the creditor immediately. Don’t wait for them to call you. Many companies have programs established that can help you by delaying payments or adding them to the end of your contract. Check to see if you have taken out the insurance that covers loss of income. Make sure to do exactly what you agreed to do with your creditors or let them know why you can’t.

Of course, the most important action is to start looking for a regular income. If you need a job then understand that you may have to take one that you really don’t like. If you can’t pay your bills then you can’t be picky.

When you are late on your payments you are going to start receiving phone calls from your creditors. Work with them but don’t let them take advantage of you or threaten you. Under federal law you have rights as a consumer. Please read my article “Your Consumer Rights” to learn your rights: http://www.homemoneyhelp.com/articles/consumerrights.html

It’s also important that you learn from this experience so that when you are back on your feet you know what you have to do to keep it from happening again.

If you find yourself experiencing Big Money Problems get organized, don’t let your emotions cloud your judgment, do what you say you are going to do and be willing to do what it takes to solve the problem. The odds are good that there will be better days ahead.

Terry Rigg is the editor of the Budget Stretcher web site. To Subscribe to The FREE Budget Stretcher Newsletter just visit his home page at http://www.homemoneyhelp.com or get the Budget Organizer full download version complete with calculating forms and more at http://www.homemoneyhelp.com/BBOdownloadSusanne.html

Click Here to Leave a Comment Below

Ashley - November 23, 2010

It is true, sometimes you have make radical changes to survive. If you are at this point, there is a book you should check out from the library. It is called The Complete Tightwad Gazette. This book is filled with tons of ways to cut back, make due, make your own, and change your mindset. You don’t have to feel horrible about being very frugal. You CAN take control of your money and feel GOOD doing it!

dorothy - November 24, 2010

Two other books I would highly recommend are Debt Free Living by Larry Burket and Your Money or Your Life which I think was written by Joe Domingoes. Ashley makes an excellent point about feeling good being frugal and taking control of your money.

Summer - January 11, 2011

Another great resource (while you’re at the library and all) is Dave Ramsey’s Total Money Makeover. Sometimes you have to live like no one else, so later you can live like no one else! Second jobs, selling everything but the kids – it’s all on the table as an option when you get to this point.

He’s on the radio in most areas (not L.A.) and also has a free podcast you can listen to. Very inspiring to hear people calling in and screaming, “I’m debt free!!”

I enjoy his advice and his show. And I agree – the Tightwad Gazette is great.

Johnny Garbage - December 22, 2014

And what do you do when you realize the America of 20-40 years ago is gone and never coming back and you’re now in your 50s, completely broke, savings gone, can’t get another job, and you realize it’s never going to get better and one day your body will inevitably break down and you’ll be unable to care for yourself?

What is the point of living if the only good you are is if Target or Walmart can use your labor and pay you as little as possible in return, so your entire existence is about working just to keep a roof over your head, 7 days a week, 365 days a year?

Dave Ramsey – what a joke. It assumes you’re a person with a job, savings, a future, instead of, like millions of Americans, just living in a country that has no intention of taking care of you after you’ve paid into the system for decades. Right now, it’s 3:54 in the morning and I can’t sleep worrying about how I am going to pay my rent in 10 days, and do i have enough gas to get to work tomorrow. And don’t tell me to take public transportation and give up the car, where I live it is rural and there is no public transit to speak of.

I am not as negative in “real life” as this post might make me out to be. I am positive, I eat right, excercise, have many interests and interesting people in my life, but this struggle over money, money, money, wears you down after a while, and to tell you the truth, I have contemplated suicide many, many times because I am basically worthless to the world except for what it can get out of my labor, and pay me as little as possible in return. I wish I came from a wealthy family, or i wish I could win the lotto. I wish money didn’t run every single fucking decision I make every day of my life.

I wish I hadn’t been born, a lot.

Well, thanks for listening. I am going to try and go back to sleep one more time.

Cheers and Merry Christmas. I think. i don’t have money to buy anyone presents. That’s pretty embarassing, too.

    Hillbilly Housewife - December 22, 2014

    you’re obviously under a lot of stress right now which is hard. I will be praying for you and hoping that 2015 goes a lot better. Your comment about suicide worries me. Please get some help and talk to someone. I am sure there’s someone at a local church you could talk to, or at the very least call the National Suicide Hotline at 1 (800) 273-8255.

    Merry Christmas to you as well… and don’t worry about not being able to buy presents. The best gifts we receive often have no monetary value.

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