Friday, July 13, 2012

How to Pay Bills while Broke

Knowing how to pay bills when there is no money left can be unpleasant and stressful, if no plan is made.  As late fees appear, you could face legal action against you and loss of assets. In dire financial situations, it is imperative to prioritize payments and check options.

You should think carefully about paying bills while broke and talk directly to your creditors. Learn how to pay bills when little or no money is available after expenses.

Make Paying Bills a Top Priority

Prioritizing bill payments should be your first step. Decide which is the most important bill that you must pay like utilities. Consider which services, if unpaid, would have the biggest impact on your lifestyle. For example, unpaid bills for credit cards can amount to late fees and bad credit records, but usually will not make you lose any assets like defaulting on mortgage payments.

Paying the bills

Consider goods or services that you can live without like Cable TV, gym memberships, magazine subscriptions, and expensive roaming plans. Check all service contracts and payment plans to know if any could be cut or dropped. Lowering or dropping some services may assist you in finding the necessary money to cover bills.

Make a budget with only needed goods and services. Ask friends or family for feedback on your budget to get a second perspective on where else money can be saved.

Negotiate with Your Creditors

It is imperative to communicate with your lenders if payments cannot be made. For example, if you lose your employment or suffer a financial hardship, contact lenders for possible payment arrangements or extensions. Lenders might be willing to assist you if contacted before multiple missed payments accumulate. For example, credit card companies might negotiate a new payment rate based on your current finances. Utility providers could provide advice about programs and agencies that help people pay their bills when financial trouble arises. Certain service providers may even waive early penalty charges.

Avoid ignoring bills, which can lead to bigger problems. If you communicate with your creditors, there is a chance you can have your payments temporarily reduced or deferred for later dates.

Income vs. Savings

Increase money available to pay bills by earning more money or reducing expenses. You should decide which expenses to reduce or remove. The remainder of your regular spending should be determined. After the least necessary expenses have been removed from your budget, use the available money to pay necessary bills. Search for extra ways to become more efficient like reducing power bills by using energy saving devices only. Any money that is saved should be used to pay bills.

If you find that you do not have enough money to pay your bills, there are many resources and options for you. Make a budget to manage bills based on your income and communicate with lenders to know your options. Improve your financial situation by reducing expenses and deciding which bills to pay first while broke. Once you have managed to pay your bills, create an emergency fund to avoid falling into the same financial situation.

This article is provided courtesy of Credit Season UK, a consumer finance website providing information and tools on payday loans and other personal credit services.

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