I’m running out of money before my next payday: what can I do?

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In America, life from paycheck to paycheck is commonplace. The majority of workers do not have significant savings, even if their income exceeds six figures. The truth is that life is expensive and there are unexpected expenses every month. So what can you do if you run out of money before your next payday?

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A survey by The Penny Hoarder found that nearly 60% of people cut spending to save money before their next payday. About 36% are using credit cards to get through the crisis and over 36% are using their savings. While these are all viable options, some make more financial sense than others.

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See what you can do if you run out of money before payday.

Check your expenses

If you’re short on cash before your next payday, the first thing you should do is review your spending habits. Create a budget if you haven’t already. Consider all of your income and expenses. First, print out your paychecks for the past few months, as well as bank and credit card statements.

Make a list of important bills that you have to pay each month, such as B. Your rent or mortgage, car loan, and utilities. Now categorize your other expenses into things like entertainment, clothing, health care, education, etc. This will help you understand where your money is going each month and where you can save on expenses.

Prioritize your money

Your accommodation, meals and transport costs are a matter of course. Unless you’re planning on downsizing, these are more or less fixed costs that need to be paid for first. However, other areas like entertainment and clothing purchases may need to take a backseat for a while to get you to your next paycheck.

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If you look at how you’re spending your money, you might be surprised at what can be cut. Check out things that are on Autopay. Paying $29.99 for a subscription you never use? Do you have Hulu, Netflix, Prime and Disney+? can you live with just one All of these small cuts can add up to big savings in the long run.

Increase your income

Once you’ve prioritized your expenses, see if you can increase your income. Consider a side hustle like tutoring, food delivery, pet sitting, or selling your stuff. Think about what you could offer a company or an individual, e.g. B. Social media management or personal shopping.

If you have been employed by your employer for at least a year (in some cases six months) you should apply for a raise. Do your research and make a convincing argument as to why you deserve the raise. Have you recently taken on more responsibility or accepted a new position? What do you offer the company that makes you a valuable asset?

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Look for utilities

After reviewing your expenses and looking for ways to increase your income, see if you qualify for assistance programs. You may be able to apply for a deferral on your student loans or be eligible for help with your utility bills. State and federal programs are available depending on your income.

Slip into saving

If your money problems are temporary and you have a rainy day fund, now is the time to use it. Once you are in a healthier financial state, you can pay yourself back and rebuild your savings.

And if you’re really in a bind

You can load money onto your credit cards at any time; Just make sure you pay at least the minimum amount on all your cards, or your credit could take a hit. Although this fix is ​​not a long-term solution, it can help you get through a rough patch. It also doesn’t hurt to look for better plans and 0% balance transfer offers, 0% introductory APR and cash back incentives. Remember, credit card debt is easy to accumulate and very difficult to pay off.

Finally, other not-so-advisable options may include payday loans, interim loans (“buy now, pay later” programs), or borrowing from friends (unless you know you can pay it back).

If you’re like many other Americans and living paycheck to paycheck, you just know that there are innovative ways to stretch your money and stay on budget — without having to win the lottery.

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