Being proactive about money management can transform your financial situation and give you the confidence you need to build wealth. From time to time, however, it may be necessary to speculate in order to accumulate. If you want to secure more work, for example, you may decide to upgrade your work ‘tools’, such as a vehicle or license. Alternatively, you may want to enroll in a sector-specific course to increase your credentials and enhance your expertise.

Of course, an unexpected bill or expense can put you on the back foot too, which is why you might be looking for quick financial solutions. If you need to make urgent home repairs, get your car back on the road, or simply make ends meet while you take on more work, the right financial solution can give you the flexibility you need.

To learn more, take a look at how you can access the funds you need swiftly and simply:

Consider Your Options

When you need a chunk of cash fast, it’s easy to slip into panic mode. However, excessive worry or anxiety will cloud your judgment and make it harder to identify an appropriate solution. No matter how stressed or overwhelmed you feel, take the time to calm down so that you can address the situation calmly and objectively.

There is always a range of solutions available when a problem arises, although some may be better options than others. If you need cash quickly to resolve an issue, for example, you’ll want to consider what income you expect to earn in upcoming days or weeks and assess what your borrowing power is. Alternatively, if you’re thinking of investing in your future so that you can secure more work, you may want to assess which courses or programs offer the best return on investment.

Research Different Types of Borrowing

If you need to borrow funds, there are various ways to do this. You might decide to ask friends or family if they can lend you the money you need, for example. However, do be aware that borrowing money from people you know can be fraught with complications. If you are going to go down this route, take extra steps to ensure that financial matters don’t sour your relationship.

For a more reliable and stress-free option, you may want to consider borrowing from a bank or loan company. Short-term or long-term loans can be a viable way to manage your shortfall, for example. For some people, credit cards or even payday loans seem like a suitable solution but it’s important to take interest rates into account. Typically, credit cards have relatively high interest rates and payday loans are even higher. This can make it extremely difficult to get out of debt once you start borrowing money in this way.

In contrast, personal loans can have a far lower interest rate, which means you’ll pay less overall. With regular monthly repayments, personal loans can also make it easier to budget in the future, which gives you the opportunity to get your financial situation back on track.

Check Your Credit Score

Every adult in the U.S. has a credit score, even if they don’t realize it. There are three main credit reporting agencies (Equifax, Transunion, and Experian), which collate credit-related information. This is then used to calculate your credit score. Generally, a credit score can be anything from 300-850 and the higher your credit score is, the more attractive you are to potential lenders.

Before offering you a loan or credit, potential lenders will check your credit score and accept, adjust, or deny your application accordingly. If you have a low credit score, you may be offered a higher rate of interest or be able to borrow less, for example.

However, having a low credit score doesn’t need to prevent you from taking out a loan. Many reputable lenders offer loans and credit to people with bad credit, so shop around and discover the best deal you can get. Note too that successfully repaying a loan is an excellent way to improve your credit score going forward, which helps make future borrowing cheaper.

Review Your Credit History

Your credit history is taken into account when your credit score is calculated, so the information the credit agencies hold about you must be accurate! If a lender incorrectly reports that you’ve missed repayments, for example, this could reduce your credit score and make it harder for you to access credit in the future.

Similarly, if you’ve been the victim of fraud and someone has taken out credit in your name, this will have a knock-on effect on your credit score and your financial future.

If you check your credit history and something seems amiss, there are procedures you can follow to have the entry rectified. Although this can take time to achieve, it’s well worth contacting the relevant credit reference agency to ensure that your credit history is corrected.

Compare Lenders

Now you’ve got an idea of the type of borrowing options that are available to you, you’ll be able to compare lenders in a little more detail. If you want to take out a personal loan, for example, you’ll need to compare interest rates from various lenders to determine which is the lowest. However, this isn’t the only detail that’s relevant when you’re taking out a loan.

If you plan to pay off your loan more quickly than the contract states, you’ll want to check whether there are any charges or fees for doing so. Choose a company that has no prepayment penalty like Upstart or Upgrade can be advantageous if you want to repay your loan more quickly, for example.

Similarly, you’ll want to check how long it takes to secure a loan and receive your funds. After all, if you need to access cash quickly, you won’t want to wait for weeks for your application to be processed. Fortunately, reliable lenders such as Upgrade and Upstart offer one-day funding, so you can access your loan within 24 hours.

Update Your Budget

When you take advantage of quick financial solutions, it’s important to update your budget accordingly. If you take out a personal loan to consolidate other debts, for example, your new, single monthly repayment might be much lower than the multiple repayments you were making previously. If so, this could actually reduce your monthly outgoings and give you more disposable income to spend or save.

Alternatively, if you’re taking out an additional loan, the repayment might be an extra expense that you need to account for. In this instance, you’ll need to adjust your budget so that you can comfortably afford to make the repayments on the agreed date every month.

Creating a budget or using a dedicated app are both viable ways to manage your finances, so experiment with different tools to find a system that’s easiest for you.

Improving Your Finances as a Gig Worker

Whether you’re a full-time gig worker or you’re supplementing your existing income with freelance work, the gig economy gives you the chance to increase your earnings and enhance your finances.

Indeed, the flexibility and the option to work a schedule that fits with your existing commitments is just one of the advantages of being a gig worker. No matter what your financial situation is currently, taking on additional gigs, using your skills to increase your earning power, and finding the right financial solutions can give you the tools and opportunities you need to elevate your finances.