What To Do When You Run Out of Money

Published on January 20, 2021 by Lauren

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  • What to do when you run out of money?

    You get paid bi-weekly on Fridays.  Two days after you get paid, you are already out of money. 

    Does this sound too familiar?

    So, what do you do when you run out of money?  We’ve been in this situation many times and we have learned a few things to help us make sure we don’t run out of money.


    What to do when you run out of money


    What to do when you run out of money:

    1.) Find something to sell.

    A few months ago, we had an unexpected expense pop up that we did not budget for.  Because of that, we had depleted our two-week budget almost immediately after we got paid. We had two choices at that point – be broke and out of money for the next two weeks or find something to sell to make up for the loss.

    I decided to take an old diamond ring that I never wore and sell it to a jewelry consignment store for $100.  This $100 was the exact amount of money that we had to pay out for the unexpected expense, so it was a win!  I could have also sold it on Ebay, but that sale wouldn’t have happened so quickly!

    Often times you have the money already laying around in your house and if you are willing to part with those items it can help you get back on track.

    If you aren’t sure what you can sell, there are so many things you can make money from. You can sell used books online, you can learn how to sell on Poshmark (clothing sells great on Poshmark), check out these things to sell to make money as well.

    2.) Eat out of your pantry.

    Once in a while, we take a week where we challenge ourselves to eat out of the pantry.  What this means is that you buy only the minimum you need to feed yourselves for that week. 

    Take inventory of the food that you have in your pantry and freezer, then create meals around those foods.  This is extremely helpful when you have run out of money at the end of a pay cycle and won’t get paid for another week.   You will be surprised how resourceful you will become when you use this method.

    If you tend to run out of food every month, make sure that next time you go shopping, buy these 10 things. Every frugal pantry needs to have these 10 items!

    You should also learn what foods you can or cannot freeze. Once you get the hang of this, expired food will be a thing of the past!

    3.) Don’t run out of money in the first place.

    Easier said than done, right?  Oftentimes, this isn’t something you can have much control over, but when you learn how to budget every month it really helps!

    Setting a budget helps you figure out what week you can pay for what things. My Money-Saving Budget Planner is something I created for this very problem.  By using this planner, move your bills around every month, week-to-week, this helps you easily see where most of your money is being spent every month. Then, call and see if you can change the dates of those bills to accommodate your bill pay schedule.

    We found that the first half of the month was always more expensive than our second half and we were running out of money early in the month.  By making a few quick phone calls, we were able to switch our due dates on many of these bills. This helped to even out the month’s expenses.

    4.) Start a 21-day spending freeze

    You can commit to not spending money for 21 days. Why 21 days? Experts say that it takes 21 days to break a bad habit.  I bet you will start seeing that you were spending money on things that you didn’t need, and then wouldn’t have money to spend on those things you do need. 

    Once you are done with that 21-day spending freeze, you should be more aware of how you were spending money, and that should help you make your money last longer.

    It can be discouraging when you get paid and almost the second it enters your bank account, it already is gone.  But keep in mind that you can make some pretty significant progress if you follow the four steps above.

    Do you have any other recommendations for what to do when you run out of money?



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