5 Ways To Meet Your Short-Term Emergency Money Needs
Emergencies don't wait until you have plenty of money in the bank to occur. They always seem to hit when you are down to your last dollar, and it can be pretty stressful when they happen. If you have an unexpected emergency and need a short-term solution to your problem, consider these five solutions.
Ask your bank for an overdraft loan
Many banks offer customers the chance to set up an overdraft line of credit, or overdraft loan, to cover unexpected expenses that might otherwise make your bank account become overdrawn. Instead of paying hefty overdraft fees, and risk having important payments declined for a lack of funds, the overdraft loan covers your transactions up to a pre-specified amount. Banks typically charge interest on the money you "borrow" from your overdraft loan, and there may be other fees associated with each transaction, so check with your bank before relying on this method to meet your emergency money needs.
Pick up additional work
If you can pick up additional hours at your current job, you can help cover the expenses incurred with your money emergency as soon as your next paycheck. If overtime isn't an option at your place of employment, consider taking on a second job until the financial crisis has passed.
Apply for a loan
If your bank doesn't offer overdraft loans, you can try applying for a traditional one instead. Beware, many banks are hesitant to lend to someone who is already experiencing financial difficulties, so the lending process may be very strict. You can also try approaching local credit unions to borrow money, as they tend to be more lenient with their lending requirements.
If banks and credit unions aren't an option, try online lenders, or fast cash loans from local money lenders. These tend to be more flexible with their lending requirements, and can often help you get the money that you need quickly, even if your credit is bad. Be sure to compare loans with these lenders if possible, as the interest rates vary and can be much higher depending on the lender you choose.
Payday loans, like from EZ Check Advance, are another lending option, particularly for smaller amounts of cash. If you think you can safely and comfortably afford to pay the loan off quickly, a payday loan can be an ideal solution to a short term money emergency.
If you have something of value that you don't need, you may be able to sell it to cover the costs associated with your money emergency. Many online classifieds offer free listings, so you can take photos of the items you have to sell and post them without paying a cent. Online auction sites like eBay are another good way to make some fairly quick cash when money is tight, and some people find that it's a good way to make a second income.
Pawn shops are another option, particularly if you need the money very quickly. You may even be able to borrow money from your local pawn shop without selling your valuable item. Be sure to confirm the details of the loan before you accept the money, or your item could be sold before you can repay the money.
Recycling is fast, easy, and can help your wallet as much as it helps the planet. Collect scrap metal and aluminum cans, then take them to your local recycling center. Most metals earn you pennies on the pound, so you have to have a lot of metal in order to see any real money, but if you happen to have any scrap metal on hand, it could be a financial lifesaver.
Used cell phones can also be recycled for money. The amount you receive depends on the age and model of your cell phone, but it could be enough to cover your short term money problems.
The best way to avoid money emergencies is to plan ahead and maintain an emergency savings fund, but if that's not an option, these tips could help get you through those tough financial times a little easier.