Updated: July 14, 2023
Financial emergencies can happen anytime.
Without warning, you can lose your job, get sick and be unable to work, run into an accident and be hospitalized, your stuff can get stolen, or your car or home can suddenly need major repairs.
These are just a few reasons why it’s important to have an emergency fund.
It’s recommended that you save at least six months’ worth of your monthly expenses, but if you want to be really protected, then you can follow my formula in this article.
Now what if a financial emergency happens and your savings is not enough, or worse, you don’t have money saved at all to pay for the expenses – what can you do, and what are your options?
Here are seven sources of cash that you can tap if you don’t have an emergency fund.
1. People who owe you money
You were generous to lend them money when they were in need, now it’s time to pay you back, and you have a good reason to ask for it.
However, don’t get your hopes up because most of them won’t pay, but it’s always worth a try.
2. Cut back on spending
Re-allocate your budget for discretionary expenses towards your financial need. Get rid of your normal indulgences and remind yourself that every bit of cash that you save will help.
Although this sounds like common sense, I’m still surprised to hear some friends complain about not having enough money to pay for important home repairs, but they’re in front of me sipping a Starbucks frappuccino.
3. Find sources of income
It’s time to be creative and look for ways to earn extra income. Buy and sell stuff. Offer your skills as a service. And if possible, apply for a second job.
They say that necessity is the mother of invention. So when the need for cash becomes imperative, you will discover that income opportunities are actually everywhere.
4. Liquidate assets and investments
Sell the things that you own. You can start with the stuff that you haven’t used in a year, especially branded clothes and kitchen appliances.
If you find yourself still short of cash, then proceed to redeem your paper investments and sell your pooled fund units and shares.
5. Withdraw from your life insurance policy
Call your life insurance agent and ask if your policy already has some cash value that you can withdraw.
But don’t get your hopes up, especially if you’ve had your policy for just five years or less or if you have term insurance.
6. Borrow money from a friend or family member
I’m putting this as your sixth option because borrowing cash should be a later consideration. Try your best to produce money on your own first.
If this is inevitable, then have the honor to pay back the loan in the future. Be realistic about when you can pay so as not to betray their trust. Lastly, don’t be mad if they don’t lend you money.
7. Take out a personal loan
Finally, when all else fails, apply for a personal loan. Getting an unsecured or non-collateral personal loan from SSS, a bank, or a loans association will be quick, albeit the higher interest. This is recommended if you only need a small amount.
For substantial amounts, it might be better to get a secured loan because this has lower interest rates. Be sure to really study your future cash flow, or you’ll risk losing your collateral.
And that’s it! Did I forget something, or do you have any other tips? Share them below in the comments section.
BONUS TIP: It’s good to always have cash at home for sudden financial emergencies, especially when it’s a bank holiday, and ATMs are offline.
Further Reading: What To Do When A Financial Emergency Happens
Photo credit: aquino_paolo