Paying Your Mortgage or Rent In Full Should Be A Priority
The last thing you will want to do is have a late mortgage or rent payment especially if you don’t have savings in the bank.
Optimizing your budget is different from having a contingency plan in place however both are very important.
There aren’t many options available to Canadians when they can’t pay their mortgage or rent which is why you must plan.
Granted, things do happen in life that forces people into an emergency mode which is why it’s important to stash cash.
It may not be the optimal place to earn interest but it’s a place where you can deposit and withdraw liquid money and use it quickly.
In the event, you lose your job or your health deteriorates and you’re waiting for insurance to kick in having access to cash is critical.
For most people paying their mortgage and rent is the first priority followed by monthly bills and then the food comes last.
The idea around that is you most often won’t get a break from your mortgage company or landlord when it comes to free rent or a rent payment plan.
A rent payment plan is where you miss one month or a portion of the rent and pay your landlord back extra each month until you are caught up.
If you can’t pay they may evict you or even worse a mortgage company can take your home from you if you don’t pay.
As for food luckily there are many community resources for Canadians to tap into such as the Food Bank, local soup kitchens and church organizations that will help with things like food and clothing.
Avoid Being Rental or Mortgage Poor
When shite hits the fan and you’re stuck in between a rock and being house poor it’s a tough space to clear.
When looking for a new home or rental until always consider what would happen if you or a partner were to lose their job.
- What if they got injured?
- Could you afford to pay the mortgage or rent on your own?
If the answer is no then you better start saving your dollars to build an emergency savings fund.
Creating a mock budget before you rent or get a mortgage is a great way to see if you can handle the added expenses.
Even if you can afford it you should always have cash set aside for times that you are not earning money.
If you are reading this because something similar has happened I’ve got a few ideas up my sleeve to help you maximize your budget.
Although my ideas follow different timelines it’s best to find out what works for you and how it could impact your future.
By this I mean you may not be in an emergency state now but you could be.
Planning ahead has always been a strong feature I possess because it has helped us become better savers.
Let’s have a look.
Reduce Monthly Expenses To Free Up Cash
I think when you are trying to optimize your budget to free up cash so you can pay your mortgage or rent it’s an obvious option.
Most people whether they budget or not start to consider what services they no longer need to increase savings power.
For example, last month we made a phone call to Rogers communications and got rid of our cable once and for all.
The savings for us each year will be just under $1000 and that’s money you could put towards your emergency savings.
You can also use the cash you are freeing up each month to put towards your mortgage payment or to give your landlord.
Next, you need to look at every budget category and decide whether you can lower the amount of money you have budgeted for each.
Once you free up cash based on your current net income it takes lots of the stress off of your shoulder when it comes to bill payments.
Increase Earning Potential To Avoid Late Mortgage or Rent
Sign up for local focus groups where they will call and screen you to see if you are a potential candidate.
Over the years when we had a mortgage we completed many focus groups that paid in excess of $100 for 1 to 2 hours of our time.
We also managed to sign up for a local company that does food and drinks sampling that paid us $75 for 20 minutes.
These types of consumer testing panels are great to earn extra income especially if you don’t mind screening for health-related groups.
There was a time we were each paid $350 cash for 8 weeks of screening to take a supplement drink and playing a game that tracked our concentration.
The drink was a high glucose drink so we had to be screened to see if we were suitable for the group.
Once a week we would come in for an hour and do this which was pretty simple for us especially since we were paid $700.
Other cool market research groups we participated in were related to Tim Hortons, Life Insurance, Smoking Cessation programs, and winter ice removal.
Oh, and we did one where we drank at least 6 strong exspresso coffee shots and gave reviews on each.
That was an easy $75 cash for less than 15 minutes of work but boy were we wired for energy.
Ways We Earned Extra Cash To Pay Our Rent and Mortgage
All these little savings and earnings helped us to pay our mortgage off in only 5 years.
I know many people might think that’s impossible to do but we did it but took the frugal living route very seriously.
When I was living in the UK I participated in Nielsen HomeScan which is also for Canadians.
You earn money by scanning groceries that you purchase with a hand scanner they send you.
From there you can redeem for gift cards and many other great prizes to help you save money in your budget.
Focus groups are typically held in larger cities although some smaller towns may also host them.
Any of the ones we participated in were either online or in-person at a high-end hotel or meeting room.
One of our favourites is Leo (LEO Leger Opinion) that offers in-person and online focus groups and surveys.
Any of the online focus groups or surveys that we completed required a webcam and microphone although we didn’t always need to go on camera.
Many companies are happy to have you participate in a webchat session where they only need to hear your voice.
Ask yourself? If you have the time to participate why not and earn some extra cash to balance your budget and help you pay your rent or mortgage.
Related: Don’t forget to check my Free Downloads Page for many more options to earn more money to free up cash in your budget to pay your rent or mortgage.
Sell What You Don’t Use To Pay Your Mortgage or Rent
This is a huge topic for everyone because we all have stuff in the house, garage and shed that we do not need any longer.
The more stuff you keep around you the clutter starts to pile up which also means lost income potential, especially if products are time-sensitive.
Our rule of thumb is if we haven’t touched it in 6 months we likely won’t need it, so we get rid of it.
Do your homework to see what the items you plan to sell are worth and price them accordingly.
Although donating is a great option when you are tight on money it’s best to sell what you can.
Rent a Room To Maximize Your Mortgage Repayment
The number of room rentals that I see popping up on social media groups and marketplace is increasing daily.
Renting a room in your house or renovating your basement into an apartment is how lots of homeowners supplement their income.
Just remember that any income you earn from your tenants becomes part of the amount of money you earn each year and must be declared when filing your income tax return.
Room rental prices in Ontario vary depending on what city you live but I’ve seen them as low as $400 to as high as $750 a month.
Before you do rent a room don’t forget to get a tenant reference letter and provide your potential tenant with a room rental application or rental apartment application.
Even if you rent a room for $550 a month that’s an extra $6600 a year to put towards your mortgage lump sum allowance.
We also participated in the Red Leaf Program where we were homestay parents to students from across the globe.
The money we earned which was up to $750 a month was cash and did not have to be declared on our income tax.
Keep in mind if you plan to rent a room in an apartment you’ll have to talk to your landlord first.
You can’t bring someone in to pay you rent that is not on the lease especially if you have tenants insurance.
At the end of the day, you have to worry about supporting yourself no matter how you earn your income each month.
If you find that you are coming up short to pay your mortgage or rent you MUST do something about it immediately.
Honestly, don’t wait for help from anyone but yourself because doing so could put you out on the streets.
Discussion: What other ways can someone optimize their budget to free up cash to pay their mortgage or rent payment?
Leave your comments below to help those in need with your ideas and experiences.