It will be interesting to see how the the likes of Coronation Street, Emmerdale and EastEnders tackle the cost-of-living crisis. This is a problem that the nation is facing, so it makes sense that our favourite soaps cover the issue. The storylines they will run with remains to be seen, but what can you do if you hit financial difficulty?
It’s possible for any one of us to hit the skids. But at the moment, the economic picture is particularly bleak. Energy prices have gone up, inflation is rising and fuel has also increased in price. With so many things on the up, it’s unlikely that your wage will increase to meet this extra expenditure. Even if you’re not worried, you should take a look at your income and expenditure to make sure that you can afford to pay your bills.
Taking Stock Of Your Finances
Some things we have to pay (I’m talking about rent, mortgage repayments, gas and electric). Some things we can forgo (like television subscriptions, treats and meals and activities out of the house). Other things we can reduce our spend on (I’m talking socialising, gifting budgets and the food shop). So have a look at your bank account and see what category your recent outgoings fall into. You then need to work out if the books balance. If they do, brilliant! If they don’t, then you need to work out what you can do to reduce your spending and what you can cut completely.
Being in a situation where you have more going out that coming in is scary, but don’t worry, you can make a plan to weather the storm.
Getting Help If You Need It
The first step to getting help, is acknowledging that you need it and if you’ve audited your finances properly, you will know how the land is lying. Ideally you would reach to savings to help you through this rainy period, but if that isn’t possible, there are other steps you can take. You could ask a friend of family member for a loan, or, if you’re not comfortable with that, approach a direct lender.
If you want short-term credit, then a company like Polar Credit may be worth reaching out to. Taking out credit isn’t necessarily a bad thing, as long as you keep you’re eye on it, you’re in control and have a plan to pay it back.
Next, I would formulate a plan to pay any cash that you borrow back. Think about getting a second job, finding a side hustle, or even offloading old clothes! Generating an extra pot of money to pay off any credit you take out will make you feel better about it.
What Not To Do
I think we’ve all probably watched enough soap operas to know what not to do. You should never take out a loan with an unregulated lender and you should always ask for help when you need it.
It’s also not a wise idea to ignore your finances. If you put your head in the sand, you may end up in a position where your problems deepen. So it is vital that you face the figures on your bank statement and come up with a plan of action.
Note: this is a collaborative post.