How You Can Avoid Getting Into Debt Over Your Head When You Lose Your Job

By: Contributor | April 28, 2014 (Edited July 7, 2017)

Too many bills

So you've lost your job and you're worried about going into debt? This is a natural reaction to such a sudden change, but don't let yourself get too stressed out; you're not the first person to be in this situation, and you're certainly not the last! Follow some of these tips to avoid getting into debt over your head, and remember to stay calm while dealing with the sudden upset.

Find a Temporary Source of Income

When you are out of work, you don't want to just jump into the next job that presents itself out of sheer panic. You certainly want to choose a position that suits you and that will benefit you in the long term, but you may not have the luxury of time. Securing a long-term position tends to take some time, both in the searching and interviewing processes. However, while you search for your next position, there isn't any reason why you can't obtain a part-time job or temporary position to bring in some additional income.

You may want to consider filing for unemployment support if you are eligible and it's absolutely necessary. You can usually file for unemployment over the phone or online after checking with your state to see if you are eligible to receive support. You may have some savings, but if you want to ensure they aren't depleted and that you don't go into debt, consider your unemployment options and other opportunities for temporary income.

Decrease Your Spending and Expenses

Losing your job is the perfect time to reassess your budget. Though you may have been living within your means while you were working, you now need to come up with creative solutions to cut down on your expenses even more. You can do so by cutting out some of the entertainment costs you were enjoying before, or contacting your phone and Internet providers to slim down on your services for the time being. This time of financial strain may also require that you eat out less and that you reconsider those daily expenses that seem small but have the tendency to add up, like your coffees and pastries.

Rent Out Your Second Bedroom

If you have a second bedroom that is vacant for the occasional guest, this may be the perfect opportunity to rent it out and earn some extra money to cut down on your rent. Service like airbnb are a great way to find people to rent. Though having a roommate isn't always the most ideal situation, it can certainly help with the expenses, especially if you are able to split the utility bills and share meals. If absolutely necessary, you could also consider giving up or subletting your apartment or house and renting a single room from a friend or family member to cut down on your living expenses.

Though turning to a line of credit or other loan can be natural during a time of stress like losing a job, it is important to consider the negative effects of this on your future. So instead of relying on credit, take additional measures and make some lifestyle changes to keep your head above water until you find another job. The last thing you want to do is stress about getting out of debt.

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