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New Bern Bankruptcy And Debt Relief Blog

3 tips for coping with the emotional difficulties of bankruptcy

Declaring bankruptcy does not only impact your finances–it also affects your emotions. You may feel guilt while you are facing financial difficulties. If you are experiencing shame, frustration, stress, anxious or sadness because of your bankruptcy, you are not alone.

While virtually everyone who files for bankruptcy experiences some sort of emotional distress, you do not need to drown yourself in shame for making this decision. It does not need to have a devastating influence on your mental health. Here are some ways to emotionally cope with bankruptcy.

How To Pinch Pennies on a Budget

You may think that you are already on top of things by packing your lunch and buying groceries in bulk, but there is much more to making the most of your money without giving up the things you love. Once you have realized budgeting, coupons and sales are not the enemy, dive into our list of helpful penny-pinching ideas to learn how you can be thrifty on your own terms.

Keep Track of Spending to Make Your Dollars Go Farther

The first step to spending smarter is to write out a budget and keep track of where your money goes. This does not mean that you have to say no to every shopping trip or dinner and drinks, but it is important to draw a line between things that are absolutely necessary and those that are not.

Once you've pinned down your monthly bills and expenses, consider if there are any redundancies. Do you really need Netflix, Hulu, Amazon Prime, HBO, Showtime and basic cable? If you can save $10-20 a month consolidating subscriptions and monthly fees, it can add up quickly. You can also try apps like Digit to find areas of your budget where you can save a few dollars each week.

While saving a few bucks here and there certainly helps, it is important to also be thrifty when you are spending more. If you can save a few thousand dollars when buying a car or making other large purchases by haggling or setting up an interest-free payment plan, it will make a big difference in your yearly bottom line.

When you do decide to go out to eat or shop online, embrace free options when you can. You can save on gas and enjoy the outdoors by walking, and free shipping options online mean that you don't have to drive to the mall or store nearly as often if you can afford to wait a few days.

Eat Like a King without Spending Like One

There are many ways to be thrifty with food without cutting back to ramen packets and peanut butter and jelly sandwiches. Eating at home, brewing your own coffee and doing anything you can to minimize eating out are all great first steps.

Check out grocery stores like Trader Joe's and Aldi for the lowest prices, and when you're there, spend more time in the produce and fresh food aisles than the frozen or pre-packaged sections.

Build a meal plan based on things you like to cook and eat that are in-season, and keep an eye out for coupons and sales online and in local newspapers. You can also use cash back grocery apps like Checkout 51, Ibotta or Savings Catcher each time you shop.

Stretch meats further by mixing them with grains, beans and other vegetables. You can also try one or two days a week meatless to save money without totally giving up your favorite tacos or steak. If something you want is on sale, buy it in bulk and save it for later.

Once you've tried all of these ideas, go all the way and make bread, salad dressings, granola bars, pasta sauce, spice mixes and other items from scratch exactly the way you like them.

Spring Cleaning and Elbow Grease Go A Long Way

Like food, there are many ways to cut costs around the house. For starters you can cut back on your monthly electric and water bills by using less heat and air conditioning, air-drying clothes and saving grey water from your shower and sink for water plants

Once your monthly bills are in check, give your house or apartment a thorough cleaning. If you find any clothing, appliances or other items that you no longer use, sell them to a vintage or second hand store for a few extra bucks.

If you need to repaint the kitchen or other home project, embrace DIY solutions whenever possible. There is a world of resources at your local home improvement store and online that can cut costs of hiring outside help.

Even the thriftiest shoppers can find new ways to save a few bucks locally while still making room for fun. Simply being aware of your spending and thinking twice before an impulse purchase can help you better prepare for lean times.

Try out some of these techniques and find out which work best for you so you are ready for all of the budget bumps in the road ahead.

Blog Author: Clay Pitsenbarger on behalf of Gillespie & Murphy, PA

What are my options if I am struggling to pay the mortgage?

Living in the New Bern area has enabled you to establish a comfortable lifestyle for your family. You have a good job, decent income and own a nice home. Though you work hard for everything you have, you might not have enough money set aside to help when a financial emergency strikes. 

When you experience an event that causes a drastic drop in income and makes it harder for you to pay your bills, you might start to wonder what you should do about your mortgage. The home is one of the most important expenses you have and often the biggest source of stress for many individuals. If you ever find yourself falling behind on your mortgage and in danger of losing your home, consider the following options. 

Can you file for bankruptcy again in North Carolina?

Are you considering bankruptcy but worry that if you choose this route you will not be able to again in the future, causing you hesitation to do so now? Have you already filed for bankruptcy before, are facing financial trouble again and do not know if bankruptcy is available to you?

Whatever your situation, you can go through bankruptcy more than once. In fact, there is no limit on how many times you can file, though doing so repeatedly will undoubtedly bring many challenges. What does matter, though, is the timing. The law regulates how soon you can file for bankruptcy again depending on the type you previously used and the type you are choosing now.

Should you max out your credit cards when short on cash?

Living in the New Bern area has given you the opportunity to secure a good paying job and afford a comfortable lifestyle. Unfortunately, you find yourself with some unexpected financial obligations that are beyond your means to pay. Though you do not have the cash you need to pay them, you might find yourself wondering if it is a good idea for you to use your credit cards to pay them. 

The answer really depends on your complete financial picture. Many people find themselves in this type of situation periodically. It does not indicate a problem handling money. It just means you do not have the extra for that emergency situation or are probably overextended financially. Here are some reasons to consider before you use your credit cards to pay your debts

Key facts about small business bankruptcy

One incident can create a negative wave that sends a business down a financial hole. Thankfully, people and business have options, such as Chapter 7 bankruptcy filing, that aid them in getting back on their feet. 

Small business owners in need of a fresh start may find that this type of bankruptcy is their best option. Before making such an important decision, there are a few key facts to know.

How to handle a financial medical emergency

As a New Bern area resident, you might believe you have nothing to worry about when it comes to your finances. You have worked hard to stay on top of your financial situation. However, you do not have health insurance and much set aside in savings. Upon your last visit to the doctor, you learned you have a medical condition that requires you to undergo extensive testing and rigorous treatment. 

Medical bills are a common reason many people end up in financial straits. Even those who have health insurance find their benefits cover only a fraction of their medical expenses, causing them to use up their savings and other resources. Now that you have unexpected and long-term medical bills, you are no longer confident in your ability to remain financially afloat. Medical procedures can get quite expensive, and you do not know how you will keep your home, vehicles and continue to pay your monthly financial obligations. Fortunately, there are things you can do to pay your medical expenses and keep your home, cars and other assets. 

Bankruptcy benefits you should consider

You may think you have hit rock bottom if you are contemplating bankruptcy in Greenville. However, it can offer you a way out of the nightmare you have had to endure ever since you lost your job several months ago. As bleak as your financial situation may seem right now, it is not the end of the world. Your current position can help you do what you have struggled to do, which is get your debts under control. 

Bankruptcy is a solution that is not suitable for everyone. You should carefully weigh the advantages and disadvantages before you file. Here is a brief overview of the benefits of bankruptcy

Signs your credit card debt may be spiraling out of control

You, like many people in the Wilmington and Greenville areas, may rely on your credit cards to help you pay some of your monthly financial obligations. You may have a reliable source of income, make a decent wage and be responsible with your money. But if the only way for you to stay current on most of your bills is to charge your credit cards each month, you could be becoming overly dependent on them and digging a deeper hole for yourself. 

Sometimes, no matter how carefully you plan your spending, you may not be able to avoid creating more debt. Your financial obligations may simply be too much for your situation. Here are some signs that indicate you may need to get professional help for your credit card debts

Does divorce lead to bankruptcy?

Divorce affects everything from everyday life to planning a vacation. One of the most prominent effects it has on your life is hurting your financial situation. Between the division of assets, legal fees and change in income, your bank account takes a big hit.

Is the inevitable result filing for bankruptcy? After all, the most common causes of bankruptcy are unexpected financial losses, not extravagant spending. With divorce being a huge life-changing event, it would make sense that it would lead to another one.

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