If you have found yourself in a difficult situation and need access to money fast, you are not alone. Many families have landed themselves in a financial quandary, especially since COVID 19 hit the world and many people lost their jobs. The best bet, of course, is to have an emergency fund in place so that if anything like this should happen again, you know you have some reliable money set aside to enable you to deal with it.
But, this isn’t always possible.
Many people find it hard to simply afford their monthly outgoings, let alone start an extra savings fund which they cannot touch. Also, many people, understandably, feel they want to prioritise saving for a holiday rather than a rainy day account. It is much more exciting and meets those short term plans that are often needed when a family works hard all year and needs a break.
So when you do need extra cash quickly, where do you turn? Since the pandemic, loan sharks, or mashonisas as they are known, have been prolific. In the article, one loan shark spoke about the interest rates that he charges, “I usually charge 50% interest, this remains the same for as long as the loan amount is not fully paid.” The trouble is, that with many of these loan sharks, they have been known to use abusive methods to collect payment if your repayment has not been met. This is illegal and unacceptable – and something you need to wholly avoid.
So, where do you turn? In the first instance, you might want to ask friends and family to bail you out, if the need is great and if they have the funds to do so. This comes with its own set of problems of course, and borrowing money from friends and family should follow a format or even a contract where each party knows when they money will be repaid and is committed to doing this. You do not want to find yourself in the situation where you have arguments or fall out with your loved ones over money, so tread your ground responsibly here.
You might also consider an emergency loan or credit if you are in this situation. Wonga: a fast cash loan provider, says that this should be a short term solution only, “Customers are drawn to the fast loan option primarily because of its speed and convenience that’s useful when an unexpected bill emerges that you cannot cover with your savings. This is the only circumstance where Wonga recommends using their quick loan product.” It is important that you follow this advice as borrowing fast cash for other reasons could lead you into a spiral of debt that is even more difficult to get out of.
If you are really struggling and none of the above options will help you, the next step you should take would be to seek a debt counsellor or financial advisor. They will be able to look through your finances and come up with an appropriate plan which you should follow. This might involve negotiating with some of your lenders to give you more time to pay off debts, or to give you a payment holiday. Since the COVID 19 pandemic, many lenders are becoming more realistic and reasonable about what you can do and payment holidays have been a welcome relief for many. In some cases, you can delay the payments by 3 months which will really help you to get on track in the meantime.