Tuesday, November 23, 2010

No Job, No Money

With the current economy upside down, the job market is very unstable. So what do you do if you hit rock bottom? You lose your job, tear through your savings, and now you don't have money to pay your bills. First off, if you haven't applied for unemployment or government assistance, now is the time! This is why the government has these programs in place. Apply for TANF (Temporary Assistance for Needy Families), food stamps, and Medicaid. Depending on your situation, the level of benefits you receive will vary. Clip coupons! Yes, you can use coupons with food stamps. This will help you stretch your benefits further. Call your local church or food pantry. Sometimes they may even be able to set you up with a group or program to help you pay utility bills. Also, if this happens near the holidays, church groups like St. Vincent DePaul set up gift tree programs. You contact them and tell them about your family and what they would like for Christmas, and with gifts donated to the church, your children, and even you, are able to have a Christmas! Next, tell your friends and family. They will be your biggest support, so don't be ashamed to tell them, because chances are, they will be more than happy to help out.

Get your budget in check! You'll want to eliminate anything from your budget that isn't a necessity. Dining out, morning lattes, cable, and impulse spending need to go.

Offer your services. Walk dogs, babysit, or clean houses. Anything to earn extra money will help.
In need of clothing? Visit resale shops in upper class neighborhoods. The clothes will most likely be in better condition and name brand.

If you find yourself in this situation, get your finances under control, and then research programs in your area that are designed to help people in your position and take advantage of them.


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