How To Get Help Paying Your Rent

If you follow my spending posts, you’ll notice that my rent is my largest expense. It’s not that high due to where I live, but it’s still my biggest expense each month. This tends to be true for a lot of people – paying for the place where you live is usually your largest expense each month.

The other day I was listening to the popular Pitbull song with these lyrics:

I knew my rent was gonna be late about a week ago
I worked my ass off, but I still can’t pay it though

Despite the way the song goes after that, it reminded me of the times in life I’ve had where I wasn’t sure how I was going to pay rent. It’s scary to not know how you will pay for a secure place to live which is why today I want to share ways to get help paying your rent.

How To Get Help Paying Your Rent

If you are struggling to pay your rent and need help, these resources and ideas will help you find the money to pay your rent. Some of these are non-profits and groups dedicated to helping people like you who need help paying rent. Others are just ideas you might want to consider to help making money to pay for your rent. Using all of them might be the best option.

how to get help paying your rent this month

Talk to your landlord. Depending on where you live and your relationship with your landlord, you might be able to get an extension or even some help. While this doesn’t happen often, some landlords understand when you have a hard time and need some help. They might give you a couple extra days to pay or skip the late fee for the month. You never know until you explain the situation and ask what options you have.

Check out Housing and Urban Development Program. Check with HUD to see what the public housing program can do for you. If you are a low income earner you may be able to get help paying for your rent. Eligibility depends on gross income and is specific to the area you live in based on the cost of living in that area. You’ll have to contact your local HUD field office to see if you can get help in your area. Contact your local HUD office and get more details.

Check out USDA Rural Development Rental Assistance Program. If you live in a rural area rather than a city then this program might be able to help you. Part of the assistance they provide includes apartments for people in rural areas with low incomes. You should contact your local representative from the USDA Rental Assistance Program to see what help they can provide you in paying your rent.

Check with your local city government. Many state and city governments have rental assistance programs that operate independently within their area. Contact your local government representative or check their website for information about these types of programs.

Get help if you are a veteran. There are a couple organizations out there that help veterans who need assistance paying rent. The Veteran Affairs Supportive Housing Program gives help to homeless veterans with the Housing Choice Voucher Program. If you are a veteran without a place to stay then you should definitely see if you qualify for this assistance on the VASH website. Additionally there are programs run in individual cities that offer help to veterans in need. Reach out to the local veteran groups and see what there is available in your specific area.

Get housing help in emergencies. The United Way’s Emergency Food and Shelter Program supports many local programs that provide people with food and shelter in emergencies. If you can’t pay your rent and suddenly find yourself without a place to stay then this is definitely a resource to keep in mind as they can help you get food and shelter in an emergency situation. Check their website to see what local program they support in your area.

Reach out to religious groups. There are several religious groups that provide various types of support to people at a local level. You can reach out to any of these groups local chapter in your city: Catholic Charities, Lutheran Social Services, St. Vincent DePaul Society. These religious organizations may be able to help pay your rent. Similarly, if you are connected in a church in your area, reach out to the pastor. Many churches set aside some money to help members of the congregation and community when they fall on hard times. Additionally they may be able to collect money for you or help you in other ways.

Apply for grant money. There are some organizations that provide grants to people who need help paying rent. Grants like these are generally from charities and help prevent low income earners from falling into poverty or homelessness. Grants are money given to you that you don’t have to pay back. If you can’t pay for your rent or are having trouble paying for your utilities, you can apply to receive a grant from a charity like Modest Needs. They offer $1,000 grants that can get you through a tough spot when you can’t pay rent and need help.

Rent out a room in your home. An easy way to get help paying for your rent is to split the responsibility with someone else. This is something that I personally do and have done for several years now. Sharing some common areas with another person is definitely worth the trade off of paying less rent and being able to pay rent on time every month. You can find potential roommates within you circle of friends and family or by placing an ad on Craigslist (and using precaution and common sense). This might not be an option for everyone if you don’t have extra room or live with minor children.

What other ways do you know for getting help paying your rent?

What $125,000 Will Buy Me In House

When I do go to purchase a house in the next few years the purchase price will probably end up being somewhere between $100,000 and $150,000. This is based on the city I live in, the neighborhoods I like, and what is currently available. While I’m not anywhere near ready to try buying a home again, I do still like browsing to see what I could buy eventually.

For the sake of showing a few examples, I wanted to share what a middle number in my range would buy me in my city. Here’s what I could purchase for $125,000 where I live.

125K house for sale

  • Price: $125,000
  • 3 Bedrooms
  • 2 full Bathrooms
  • Single-Family Home
  • Lot size: 7,405 sqft
  • Built in 1925

119K house for sale

  • Price: $119,900
  • 3 Bedrooms
  • 1 full Bathroom
  • Single-Family Home
  • Lot size: 9,583 sqft
  • Built in 1954

119900 house for sale

  • Price: $119,900
  • 3 Bedrooms
  • 1 full Bathroom
  • Single-Family Home
  • Lot size: 8,712 sqft
  • Built in 1953

120K house for sale

  • Price: $120,000
  • 4 Bedrooms
  • 2 full Bathrooms
  • Single-Family Home
  • Lot size: 0.34 acres
  • Built in 1972

The neighborhoods I like tend to be within city limits and closer to the action and heart of the city. These means some tradeoffs like older homes and lots of houses that are 3 bedrooms with 1 bath. This five minute search turned up several cute houses with plenty of space for a future family and lots of things to grow into. The neighborhoods are ones I’ve lived in or have family living in so I like the potential there as well. It’s pretty awesome how low housing prices are here because $125,000 buys a lot!

If I wanted to go further outside the city and enter suburbia, I could easily find a bigger and newer house for the same price. While I don’t plan on aiming for size when buying a home in the future, that will always be an option kept in mind. I’d gladly pay for proximity to the things I do the most rather than pay less for a giant house far away from all the things I like to do.

$125,000 as a budget for buying a house in a few years feels really achievable and it also is a reasonable budget for my area. There will be plenty of houses within that price range to choose from so it will be easier to find the right one without stressing out about a bidding war or anything I see happen in other cities. Sometimes it pays to live in a low cost of living area!

Are You Prepared For A Disaster?

Lately I’ve been watching a lot of the show Doomsday Preppers. It’s a somewhere popular reality show that looks at people who are preparing for situations that they believe will be the end of civilization as we know it. Many people fear natural disasters, but even more of these Doomsday Preppers fear a huge financial collapse that will cause social unrest and destruction of civilization.

doomsday preppers tv show preparing for a disaster

Are You Prepared For A Disaster?

Whatever disaster you think might befall you, it’s best to have at least some kind of preparations in place. The people on the show are all judged on their preparations in several categories:

  • Food
  • Water
  • Shelter
  • Security

These are the things that will help people survive through the different situations that might occur. They are the necessities

The show also adds an “x factor” scoring for people that can include any kind of creative preparations they might have in place.

Watching the show will definitely make you wonder if you are prepared for a disaster. You might not be prepared for a “doomsday” situation, but being prepared for a basic disaster is something we should all be doing.

If something happens tomorrow, will you have a source of water to survive for 3 days? Do you have enough food to last a couple weeks? What will you do if something happens? Do you have a plan or will you be fully reliant on other people?

are you prepared for a disaster

How I’m Preparing For A Disaster

I’ll be honest – before watching this show I never thought about being prepared for a disaster situation. I’ve even lived through tornadoes hitting my neighborhood and destroying buildings, but I’ve put my head in the sand about being prepared. Watching the show does make me question the lengths people go to be prepared, but it also reminds me that I should have some basic preparations in place myself.

Here are the things I’m doing to move toward being more prepared for situations that might come along:

Preparing A Go Bag

My partner is awesome because he always has a go bag ready for any kind of situation he comes upon. It has a knife, multi-tool, first aid kit, water and more so that he will be prepared for different situations. I plan to create my own similar bag with the basics that I might need in case of a disaster. This will be something I can grab and go with in case of a quick and unexpected disaster that forces me to go.

Reduce Expenses

I’m reducing my expenses right now so i can learn to survive on less. It’s a good lessen in being prepared for the future that might come. Whatever happens, its a good idea to be able to survive on less. If you can’t get by without comforts then it will be hard to survive a disaster of any kind.

Store Water

I had zero water storage when I first started watching this show. It’s not something I thought about! But what would happen if a disaster or some problem stopped my water supply? I’d be screwed within a day! I’m building a water supply by storing some water in case of an emergency. I know it’s one thing that I definitely want stockpiled just in case.

Start A Garden

Since I’m reducing food expenses, I want to start a garden. I’ve previously had small gardens and it was a great way to supplement food supplies. I plan to start a new garden this spring and grow some of my own food. Having a garden that produces some food is a great way to be prepared in case there is a problem with food supplies.

Learn How To Barter

Bartering and negotiation can be a really useful skill to have when you have to rely on just yourself in a disaster situation. While people might be available to help you, they will be much more likely to give you what you need if you have something to give in exchange. For example, my neighbors raise chickens and always have eggs, so I could barter with food from my garden or other items.

Get Fit

Being fit and healthy is a huge asset when facing a disaster situation. If you are forced to travel by foot for long periods you need to know that you can make it. If you have to run for your life, you want to be able to run for your life. Keeping myself in good physically condition will help me be prepared for whatever comes my way. I also plan to take some self-defense classes and work

Stores Things I Need

There are certain things I really need like medicine and contacts and personal hygiene items. Without these for an extended period I wouldn’t be very happy – just blind and wheezy. I want to store up a supply of these items so that if there is a disaster I’ll have backups available to me. Hopefully stores would always be open and available with the items I need but just in case I want to know I have the things I really need on hand.

There are some other things I’d like to explore for long term preparations as well but those won’t be something I consider until I purchase a home. I’ll definitely share more about those in the future!

What preparations do you have in place for a disaster?