Illness can strike unexpectedly, and it can put a huge amount of strain not only on your psyche but on your finances as well. While money may be the last thing on your mind during a trying time, having control over your financial situation can help you be more at ease if anything untoward should occur. Below, we break down how to best recover financially after a serious illness:
Your Health Comes First
Being diagnosed with a serious illness can be a vastly traumatic experience. Gain support from your friends and family and show yourself kindness first and foremost. Build a support network and look into health and wellness organizations in your community for your illness.
Get Your Affairs in Order
Talk to your employer and ascertain how much paid sick leave you are entitled to. Look over your insurance policies to see which ones may cover your medical bills or be used to replace some of the income you weren’t able to earn. Make your insurance claims as soon as possible so as not to be left without funds should the policy take time to pay out.
In order to determine the absolute minimum amount of money you’ll need each month, make a list of all the bills you need to pay: rent or mortgage, insurance, utilities, groceries, payments on your car, and whatever else you need to cover. Whatever the total is, make sure you have enough set aside each month for it.
Enlist a Professional
Look into debt counseling and find yourself a reputable company that provides it. Some providers are able to negotiate lower interest rates and provide you with a debt settlement or debt management plan that can help greatly in easing some of the pressure. Make sure that you never hand money over before services are rendered and do your research well.
Keep the Roof Above Your Head
Contact your mortgage company immediately and explain your situation to them – don’t wait until payments are overdue and your home is about to be foreclosed to act. Many lenders have options for homeowners suffering from crises in the form of foreclosure prevention programs. If you are renting, talk with your landlord and see if you can negotiate and make smaller payments while you recover from your illness.
Look for Ways to Get Additional Income
If your situation allows it, you can try to find legitimate work to do while you’re recovering from your illness. There are online jobs that won’t require you to leave home. If you can work on certain days, you could check with your local schools for a substitute teacher opening – not all schools need you to have teaching credentials in order to be a substitute.
You can also inquire about driving buses, janitorial work, or helping out in the school kitchen. Consider starting a small business that isn’t too taxing, like walking dogs or pet-sitting for friends and family who are going on trips. Another option is house-sitting for people going out of town for an extended period of time. You can also get your name out on Craigslist and do small home repair jobs, if you possess the skillset.
It’s a cliché, but keeping a positive, can-do attitude is half the battle won. Keep your goals realistic and attainable, and avoid worrying about things that haven’t yet happened. Viewing serious illness as a temporary setback instead of an insurmountable wall will help you keep focused and energized, as well as distract you from depression. For an additional pick-me-up, try working out or regular exercise at your local gym or find fitness programs being held for free at your community center. Not only will this help you on the road to recovery, it also keeps your mood boosted and energized.
To learn more about debt relief solutions and how to start living with financial freedom, contact CreditAssociates for a free consultation or use our Savings Estimator to see how much you could save.