Finding yourself in financial difficulties is never easy, but it’s especially stressful when you’ve got loan repayments to make.
But we’re here to say, if you’re in this situation: don’t panic.
There are lots of things that you can do if you find yourself in financial difficulties to get everything sorted quickly and without unnecessary stress.
Here’s what to do:
First things first: act quickly if you have financial difficulties
If you find yourself in a situation where you can no longer afford your loan repayments – perhaps you’ve had your hours reduced, you’ve lost your job or you’ve become sick and unable to work – then it’s important to act quickly. If you’re in this situation, you’re not alone. It’s estimated that over 8 million people in the UK have ‘problem debt’ that they struggle to stay on top of.
In these situations, it’s tempting to bury your head in the sand and to hope that it’ll all blow over. However, this very rarely happens (and often makes the situation worse).
Instead, the first thing you should do is speak to your lender and explain the situation. Lenders are often able to offer solutions to give you a chance to get back on your feet. You could spread the loan out over a longer period (with smaller repayments) or a negotiate a repayment holiday that gives you a short break.
Step Two: Manage your budget with a budget planner
When you’re having financial difficulties, it’s more important than ever to tighten the purse-strings and pinch every penny you can.
Every area you can trim back your spending is going to help guide you out of your financial difficulties. Try reducing your food shop, walking to work or cancelling that dusty gym membership – keep only what’s necessary.
At Bamboo, we’ve written lots of guides on budgeting and how to keep on top of your finances. If you’d like to check them out, this article on how to use a budget planner is a good starting point. If you’re all about technology, then you might prefer this article on apps to help manage your budget.
And, if you’re trying to bring in a little bit of extra cash to help you out, you’re in luck. We’ve written a tonne of useful advice on the best side-jobs you can do for extra cash and some creative ways you can make extra money on the side. These might help you find your way back to the green a bit quicker.
If you need it, get help
If you’re in financial difficulties, you’re not alone. You don’t have to work it all out yourself – there are people that can help.
Organisations like the Money Advice Service and StepChange are on hand to help people in your exact situation. Give them a call and discuss your problems. Not only will they be able to give you the best advice on how to cope with financial difficulties, but they’ll also be able to offer you peace of mind.