Dealing with unexpected costs

When the unexpected happens it can often be difficult to deal with the financial repercussions.  Insurance helps, but you can't protect against all eventualities. Whether you suffer a flood, fire, bereavement or burglary, sometimes it can be hard to find the money to pay for what's required. Unexpected home related incidents like insurance excesses, replacing damaged items and rental costs whilst your home is being repaired can all cost a lot of money, stretching well into the thousands. Once you've covered these costs you'll need a plan to get your finances back on track, and our tips can help.

Get your finances back on track

  • Set up a financial budget planner.

    This can be in paper or spreadsheet format - whichever is easiest for you to stick to. Or use an online tool like the one at Money Advice Service

  • Make sure you pay off debts first.

    If you're struggling, let your bank know and try and come to an arrangement where you pay off as much as you can afford each month. Have a read of our Managing Debts guide for more in-depth information on how to manage debt.

  • Start rebuilding your savings.

    Once you've paid off any debts, save as much as you can each month, but not so much that you have to take on more debt or struggle to live. Setting up a direct debit or standing order is the best way to save. If you're on a monthly salary, set it up for the day after payday. You might be surprised to find that you don't even notice it leaving your account. It won't take long to get used to living on the amount left in your account.

  • Use the 'leftover' principle.

    If you can't transfer a fixed amount into savings each month. Every time you log onto online banking, transfer any 'extra' into your savings. So if you have £305.60 in your current account, transfer the £5.60 into a savings account. If you have a TSB current account, you might be able to use Save the Change to round up debit card transactions to the nearest pound and sweep the difference into a qualifying* savings account automatically. Over time this will gradually add up, and you'll see that every penny really does count.

  • Make cuts to your spending where you can.

    And really be strict with yourself. Do you really need a meal out? Why not make your own pizzas? If you have kids this is a really fun way to keep them entertained one evening - even better! Take a look at our guides on how to cut down on household bills and saving money when going out for more tips.

  • Be organised with paperwork.

    Make sure you keep all of your paperwork in order for the unexpected event you've been dealing with. Keep all your insurance papers, financial statements and certificates together so you can find them easily without having to go through all the day-to-day household paperwork should you ever need to refer back to them in the future.

When unexpected events happen, it can lead to a challenging time but by following these steps and being smart with your money and debt, you should be able to get back on track and feel more secure in your finances.

If you need more tips on saving money save our Straightforward Money site to your bookmarks and subscribe to some money-saving blogs as they all have great tips on overcoming financially damaging events. 

* Save the Change ® is available for most TSB savings account, except Monthly Saver, Fixed Products and ISA Products. 




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