It is easy to find great advice on how to prepare for urgent expenses in advance. The problem is when they happen before you have time to get prepared. Some urgent expenses you just can’t ignore.
#1 Medical and Dental Emergencies
Medical emergencies are chief among the expenses you have to attend to immediately. While doctors and medical facilities will usually bill you for their services, pharmacies and medical equipment companies will not.
Those costs can be very high. Some pharmacies and pharmaceutical companies offer coupons and small discounts, but a bout with the flu that requires strong antibiotics can still cost hundreds of dollars.
The same is true of any type of infection. Ear infections and strep infections are especially common, particularly among children.
Other health issues, like dental emergencies, also require immediate attention, and often immediate cash. Treatments like root canals and emergency extractions can cost anywhere from a few hundred dollars to more than a thousand.
#2 Funerals and Emergency Travel
Funerals can be extremely expensive. The average in the US is between $7,000 and $10,000, and very few mortuaries offer post-funeral payment plans.
Everything is due before internment or cremation. An insurance policy can be assigned directly to the mortuary to relieve some of the costs, but any that are not covered by the policy must be paid immediately.
Quite often a funeral, or other family emergencies, requires last-minute travel. Some airlines do offer reduced bereavement fares, but there are generally no special advance purchase discounts available in these situations.
In addition, lodging for a few days or longer can be necessary, as well as meals, ground transportation, and other incidentals. Depending on where you have to go, the costs can run into the thousands.
#3 Auto and Home Repairs
If you rely on your automobile to get you to your job or to get the kids to school, that is another urgent expense that requires immediate payment. Unfortunately, auto repairs can be hugely expensive.
Most auto repair shops will not bill customers; payment must be made when the car is picked up. If you can’t pay, in many places the shop has the right to keep your property until you can pay using something called a mechanic’s lien.
Like auto repair shops, plumbers and appliance repair businesses usually will not bill, payment is due when the work is performed. Although they cannot hold your house hostage if payment is not made, in many states, they can repossess anything they have installed in your house.
Sometimes the only the only responsible alternative is an emergency loan. It is important to carefully investigate the loan company and ask all the questions you need to be certain you understand all terms and conditions.
Some of these companies offer fast approval and you can receive your money on the same day that you apply. Again, proceed with caution, but in truly urgent situations, these loans can be lifesavers.