Innovative ways to handle life's unexpected expenses

11:29:00 PM

Running a home is not cheap. But as long as you set a budget and stick to it you can manage OK day-to-day. Provided that is that nothing big goes wrong. When something big breaks and you are suddenly faced with a big bill, it is easy for you to lose control of your finances. Sometimes waiting until you have the funds available to get something fixed is just not an option. In that situation, what do you do? Here are a few suggestions which may be of help.

Fix broken items yourself

If you have a broken appliance at home, then don’t immediately start panicking about the costs. Often, the best answer is to fix the item yourself. It is not that  difficult to find good quality OEM dryer parts online, for example. In fact, it does not matter what make or model your item is you can usually source what you need to make the repair. Most firms ship nationwide. A few will even send parts further afield.

All you need to do is to find out what the cost is, including shipping, then compare it with the amount you would need to pay to have a professional fix the item for you. Remember to factor in the cost of buying or hiring any specialist tools you may need. Nine times out of ten, it will be cheaper for you to fix the item yourself, rather than replacing the item as a whole, or having a professional in to repair it.

Get someone to help you

If the job is a big or complex one that you do not think you can tackle, don’t give up and call a professional straight away. Instead, ask a friend or family member that you think has more know-how than you do for a little help. Often they will be more than willing to offer you some guidance. 

Join a skill swapping club

Should that not be an option go online and see if there is a skill swapping club operating in your area like this one. They are becoming increasingly popular as people look for ways to help others and keep the cost of running their lives down at the same time. 

The concept behind skill swapping is an easy one. Basically, for a small fee you get to join a club that puts you in touch with people around you are who are willing to fix things without charging to do so. In return, you use some of your own time to help other members of the club. It could be as simple as cooking and cleaning for someone who cannot do these things themselves. Or you could contribute your professional expertise instead. For example, building a simple website for a local carpenter who is a member of the same skill swapping club as you.

As you can see, there is no need to panic or get downhearted when something expensive breaks. Often, you will be able to find a way to deal with the situation without getting into debt.


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