Skip to main content

The Worst Surprise: Coping With An Unexpected Bill


You’re probably familiar with finding room in your budget for all the standard bills, such as those for heating or the cost of your cellphone, but what about surprise bills? The unexpected demands for money that hold the potential to absolutely destroy your budget; the most unwelcome surprises that any of us have to deal with. Things like:

  • An unexpected healthcare expense,
  • A large kitchen appliance breaking down,
  • Suddenly having to fund a school trip that you weren’t expecting

And so on and so forth; expenses that you’re unprepared for. If they hit you at the wrong time, they can push your budget to breaking point.

Coping with these unpleasant surprises is a key part of your overall financial strategy. So rather than panicking the next time you’re hit with an unexpected expense, deal with it calmly by utilizing these strategies for the future.

#1 - Create A Contingency In Your Budget

If you budget every cent of your income, then that might seem like a good idea-- many people are proud of their “zero budgeting”. However, there’s a downside to this tactic. If there’s no slack in your budget, then you’re always going to be hurt by a surprise expense.

So, you have to build the surprises into your budget. How is that possible, when you don’t know what they are? It’s simple: your budget needs a contingency section. This is an amount of money you set aside every month to pay for those surprise bills and expenses. If you don’t need to use this amount, then that’s fine; you can treat yourself, or you can let the contingency funds mount up for future use. The most important thing is that you get into the habit of running a contingency; it will make coping with unexpected costs so much easier.

#2 - Examine Your Warranty Options

When large electrical goods breakdown, you know that you’re going to be looking at a serious financial expense. It would probably take most families a long time to build up a contingency big enough to be able to, for example, unexpectedly replace their fridge or main TV.

There are solutions to this problem, thankfully. You may find that house warranties could be a good option for you, as these offer a level of protection against standard wear and tear on your household appliances. You pay a small amount per month and, in exchange, you can be sure of a repair or replacement in the event that something goes wrong with an appliance or household object. This choice is particularly useful if your contingency section of your budget is relatively small; warranties ensure you’re covered for the length of time it takes you to build that contingency fund up to a substantial level.

#3 - Always Have A Backup

For major household items, it’s wise to have a backup option in case of unexpected failure. Use sales periods like Black Friday as a chance to stock up on various household goods, then store them away, ready to be pressed into service if your existing item is suddenly rendered unusable. This is a great way of ensuring you’re always buying items for a great price, thus making your budget go that little bit further. A backup iron, hairdryer, and vacuum cleaner are a good place to start.

Those unexpected bills and expenses will always surprise you. However, by applying the ideas used above, you can be sure you’ll always be able to cope with the demands on your finances.


Popular posts from this blog

What To Do About Those Fuzzy Uninvited Guests In The Home

When we talk about pests in the home, the most common that we tend to deal with are the creepy-crawlies that find their way in. Ants, termites, and spiders, for instance. Occasionally though, you have a real chance of getting a much bigger, fuzzier unwanted guest in the home. What do you do about the fact your home is at risk of becoming a wildlife sanctuary for some truly unhealthy and even dangerous beasts? Picture by Alexas_Fotos Know the signs It doesn’t matter if you’re in a suburban home, a country cottage, or a fourth-floor apartment. Some animals can find their way just about anywhere. It’s worth knowing the signs of pest infestation so you can confirm it and act on it immediately. Spotting droppings, keeping an ear out for scratching, and looking for signs of nesting like shredded paper, scrunched leaves, and grass clippings around the home without explanation can help you start fighting back. Picture by wolfgang_vodt Cleanliness is key If there’s
 Hey neighbors, its with a heavy heart I let you all know that my mom (Lori) unexpectedly passed away the end of June. Our family has been taking the time between now and then to be together and remember what a light mom was. I came on towards the end of last year and was planning on fully moving my interviews and review to this website. I intend to to so partially to keep mommas beautiful website going. Thank you all so much for your love and support over the years. ~Mercy

Baby First TV 'I Can Sign" First Words

Hey Neighbors! Here is a really neat gift idea for someone with a young child.  Here we have I Can Sign (First Words) from Baby First  TV.  Now, I am just going to share right here that we have friends who have taught two of their children to sign at a very young age.  And it works!  Their children could sign before they could talk. The Dvd will teach your child many useful words that will be used in day to day life.  Words like: eat, water, milk, cookie, ear, feet hands, kiss, sleep, book, mother, father, and many other words.  Each word is taught in a short video clip where they will see pictures of the word/item and people signing.  There is also a little character at the bottom corner of the video signing along.  The Dvd can be done on English or Spanish.  Also included on the Dvd are printable coloring pages that you can print off by inserting the Dvd into your computer.  Inside the cover of the Dvd case is a little booklet that covers some of the words you and your child