Life is unpredictable and many of us never really think of financial difficulties and economic downturn being a possibility or how to prepare for it. So when the economy moves into a recession things can get tough pretty quickly and one needs to analyse expenditures to make sure all basic necessities are covered.
One of the most important expenditures would be rent, having a place to stay offers safety, security both physically and physiologically. However many renters do not see it this way until its too late and end up in situations where the rent isn’t settled regularly.
Depending on the frequency or level of delinquency as well as the relationship with your landlord you could easily salvage the situation within a reasonable and agreed upon period of time. However, if it becomes a monthly habit of being unable to pay your rent or missing the payment deadline, your landlord is well within their rights to begin seeking legal options.
In the interest of helping you reach that point and avoid the eviction process here are some tips for tenants to stay on top of their rental obligations.
The first and most important rule is to live within your means. It is clear that if you’re falling short of your rent you’re spending too much in other areas. Create a list of your monthly expenses and monitor where you can cut back or remove it completely in order to firstly fulfil your primary obligations like rent.
If you can’t afford it then don’t consider it. Additionally, you need to restrain yourself and not max out your credit cards and do not live off of debt, this only exacerbates an issue and prolongs the pain. What you need to do is start saving and make sure you’re moving towards a better financial standpoint.
Once you’re able to pay the rent regularly you then need to look further and start to preserve at least one’s month rent, in case you are unable to pay one month.
Borrow from friends and family
Although it is never ideal to borrow money from family, if the situation becomes grim, you might have to consider this as a last resort or a temporary measure till you’re back on your feet again. It is important to remember that is only a temporary solution and you will have to pay them back.
Borrowing money should not be seen as a get out of jail free card but rather your saving grace. This is simply to give you more time to get back on track. Use this option only if you’ve exhausted all other options.
Sell or pawn surplus items
This isn’t ideal, but such extreme measures may have to be taken if the situation is serious enough. We all are guilty of splurging on certain items we don’t really need or use any more. This could be that guitar you never learned to play or that gaming console that is actually distracting you from work. Perhaps its time to let go of these luxuries, turn it into cash and cover your expenses.
Look for cheaper entertainment options
There are plenty of ways and means of finding inexpensive entertainment options that will not break the bank. Alternatives like subscribing to a movie streaming site instead of paying for TV or going to the cinema. Planning group meals with friends and family instead of going out to eat and many more. All of these options will ease the pressure on your bank account and ensure you make that payment deadline.
View entertainment activities as a treat and not as a must-have. You can also use it as a reward once you’ve settled all your obligations and feel you need to spoil yourself, within your budget of course.
Communication is key
We’re not all without our financial mistakes so don’t feel too bad about it and use it as a lesson to improve your financial standpoint for future growth on your way to financial independence.
In conjunction with better spending habits, you also need to take responsibility for your actions and those you’ve made legal agreements with. You need to communicate with your landlord if you know that you’ll be paying rent late. It is best to keep them informed of the situation and tell them how you plan on paying the rent. Having an open and honest relationship with your landlord is favourable in these conditions, so be considerate and honest from the get-go.
If you need advice on your eviction case or would like us to represent your case, get in touch with Le Roux Attorneys