If you’re struggling with your finances, it can be difficult to keep yourself from getting stressed out. When you’re spread too thin, you never know if your money will last until your next paycheck. In times like these, it’s important to take a really good look at how you’re handling your finances. 

We often find that with a little bit of an open mind about our money, we’re able to find ways to stretch it a little further. Even if it’s just a small amount, it all adds up. There are many things you could do to get back on top with your finances; you just need to be willing and dedicated to it.


Budgeting

When it comes to being financially responsible, one of the first things you need to do is create a budget. You want to be as realistic as possible and factor in all expenses. Once you’ve implemented the budget, don’t leave room for temptation. Leave extra money at home when you go shopping – only spending your budgeted amount.

Since it’s usually the little expenses that take us off course, you may want to start budgeting your daily expenses. 

For example: pay attention to your gas costs, lunch/coffee expenses, drinks after work, and anything else you’re buying. The more honest you are about what you’re spending money on, including your bad spending habits, the better equipped you’ll be to gain control of your finances.

Discipline is required to stay focused on cutting expenses and starting to build your savings. You have to resist temptation and stick to your allocated allowances. If you find that even with cutting back on expenses, it’s still not enough to get you through the month; you might want to pick up a second job or a side hustle. It’s not ideal to go without or work harder, but it’s much better than struggling to make ends meet.


Financial help

When you first start to feel the pinch in your wallet… it’s time to give your finances your full attention. You may need to cut back on your expenses and eliminating poor spending habits. You may have to consider a consolidation loan or even getting help from your family. Whatever you do, don’t let the situation get out of hand.

If you don’t have a strong support system and find yourself in a desperate situation, you may have to consider borrowing. You can’t always predict when you’ll need extra money, and without a strong savings reserve, a loan might be the only option. While it might not seem ideal, it’s a much better arrangement than falling behind on your bills, facing potential eviction, or having your car repossessed, because of unexpected costs. 

What’s most important about borrowing money is that you clearly understand the terms involved and that you are able to comfortably pay back the loan, without creating additional hardship for yourself. Stay away from predatory lending and high-interest loans, the goal is to weather a short-term storm… not add to your dilemma.

Tip: If you’re absolutely out of options and find yourself in a bind that you’re having difficulty working through, like losing your home or vehicle, consider a payday loan – you can compare options with a service like Snappy Payday Loans. If you have to go this route, pay close attention to the interest and fees involved. They’re usually astronomically higher than traditional loans. You also want to always go with the installment payment option to make sure that you have a clear path to paying off the loan over a set amount of time. 

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