Warning signs that you’re running into financial trouble
There’s so much talk about personal hardship these days that it’s difficult to know where to start. Whether its homelessness or the ever-increasing use of food banks, poverty is all around us. But it’s easy to be complacent about it. Too many people look at those who’ve run into trouble and point the finger of blame at them for their own misfortune, but losing a home and ending up sleeping on the streets is frighteningly close to reality for some people.
How Long Can You Keep a Roof over Your Head?
It’s a straightforward question, but it’s also the main factor in whether you can stay afloat. Without an address of your own, everything else becomes much more difficult. But the cost of keeping that address, whether through mortgage repayments or rent, can be crippling.
Of course it’ll all be okay while you have a job, but what if you lose it? If you’re on benefits, what happens if you’re sanctioned? If you’re a pensioner, what happens if you suddenly find yourself with a major expense? Something has to give, and if you find you can’t pay your housing costs then you’re in real trouble. It pays to have three months’ living expenses in reserve, but how many of us can afford to do that?
Read the Danger Signs
You may think you’re okay, but there are quite a few things you need to watch to be sure you’ll stay afloat if unexpected problems occur.
The most obvious of these are your credit card spending habits. If your card spending is always close to the maximum, that’s a worrying sign. If you pay it off in full each month, then you’re most likely okay. But if you can only afford minimum repayments each month or little more, then you’ve got the makings of a serious problem.
Are you using a credit card to make everyday purchases such as food or utility bills because you don’t have sufficient income at the end of the month? Are you paying bills late? Are your outgoings eating into your savings each month with no let-up on the horizon?
Balancing the Books
Sometimes it’s just not enough to know that you’ve got more money coming in than going out. How well can your careful budgeting withstand a shock? If you use a car to get to work, what happens if it goes wrong and needs expensive repairs? Worse still, what would happen if you lost your job without warning, making your previously well-managed spending unviable? If you have no savings, nothing in reserve and nobody to help, then you can very quickly find yourself facing catastrophe, the food bank, and possibly even life on the streets.
At Irwin Insolvency we’re specialists at dealing with debt, insolvency, and bankruptcy. If you’re seeing the warning signs, get in touch with us and we’ll give you the help and advice you need to sort out your problems before it’s too late.