Here’s How You Protect Your Quality of Life When You’re Disabled
You’re going along, living your life, and BOOM! Suddenly you’re temporarily disabled.
How are you going to afford the care you need to recover?
I’ll be honest, this is the situation I’m in right now. I got injured while cleaning my kitchen (yes, really…) and I’ve spent the last 5 months dealing with the impact on every aspect of my life, including and especially my finances.
I’m a CPA and financial advisor, which you think would put me in a good situation to deal with problems like this.
And here’s what I’ve discovered…
It’s Okay to Use Emergency Credit Cards In These Situations
I’ve been reading a lot about how to manage costs when you become temporarily disabled. A lot of it involves insurance and negotiating costs and looking for less expensive care.
But the truth is, I wanted good care that I could count on and feel safe with. I wanted to stay in my home instead of a rehab facility. I wanted my pets to be okay. I didn’t want to have to get someone to take care of my house. And I didn’t want to worry about my care every minute of every day.
So, I went with a slightly more expensive option and got in-home, professional care, but it’s really not that far away financially from all of the other less good options.
Plus, I get to be in my own room, in my own house. My family and friends can easily stop by to visit without restriction. I choose what I want to eat and when I want to bathe.. And I have my pets with me, which makes a huge difference to me for emotional support and how quickly I heal.
But the money part is tricky. I admit I handle the lag between paying my caregivers and getting insurance reimbursements – which I’m still waiting for – by using credit cards.
Luckily, I have an emergency credit card with 0% intro APR for 18 months. And I may or may not be able to pay it off when the time comes.
But the truth is my priority was good care for myself, so I can heal, and not worry about credit card interest.
That goes against a million things I’m supposed to tell people as a financial advisor and it goes against advice I would normally give in a different situation.
But this situation is my life.
My quality of life matters. A lot.
And hopefully, I’ll be able to get back to work soon and pay that down before the introductory APR expires and the higher interest rate kicks in. And I am obviously making payments on this emergency credit card every month.
Think Of Your Credit Cards As a Resource, Not a Drain On Your System
Your credit cards count as a resource during this time when money’s not coming in from insurance or work because you’re disabled. Right now, working is really hard, if not impossible for me. I’m certainly not up to the level I was able to work at before my injury.
I’ve actually had to restructure my entire business outlook because I don’t know what my future is going to be, workwise.
I need it to be sustainable no matter what shape I’m in. And I don’t know exactly what that will look like in the near future, or long term, either.
So yeah, I have zero-interest credit cards and I am relying on them.
And it could be a huge financial mistake.
But right now, my quality of life is one of the main things that keeps me going. And I feel like if I was more worried about the money than about the care, it would really set me back and would ruin my chances of ever recovering emotionally, physically, mentally, and financially.
So, against what anybody else will probably tell you, I’m saying, include emergency credit cards as resources during the time when you need to get professional care.
Don’t skimp on care because you’re worried about building up credit card debt or ruining your credit score.
Your life, your care, your quality of life, your health, and your mental health are more important than a credit card bill.
This is a Your Money and Your Life Situation
I’m not saying that people should go into debt to take care of themselves but the sad truth is, most people have to. So, while you’re healthy, get some zero or really low-interest credit cards and work on improving your credit score.
Those resources are lifesaving when they’re available to you and yes, they are a part of your financial resources, period.
In some ways, they can be cheaper resources than pulling money out of your 401k prematurely, where you have to pay taxes and sometimes a 10% penalty depending on whether you’re disabled enough or if your medical bills are high enough to qualify for the 10% exclusion.
So, make sure you’ve got resources and include credit cards should among them. And use the lowest-interest and preferably zero-interest credit cards whenever you can.
And here’s the key…
Never Miss a Credit Card Payment
More specifically, never miss your minimum payments. Decide what you can definitely pay each month and set up auto-pay for minimum monthly payments.
Because the second you’re late the contract reverts to a high-interest rate and you’re stuck with that until you pay the credit card off.
You want to follow all the rules for that 0% or low-interest emergency credit card, so you can keep that low rate or 0% introductory APR for the entire term of the agreement.
Which is absolutely to your advantage when you’re disabled and stuck in a lousy situation. Trust me on this one.
Ready to Get a Credit Card for Emergencies and Start Preparing for Potential Disasters?
Or for that matter, are you ready to recover from whatever financial disaster you’ve been through lately, so you can improve your credit score?
Don’t feel bad, it happens to everyone.
Losing your job, a divorce, an accident, a prolonged illness, or any number of situations can result in a huge hit to your finances.
What you do next to stay afloat can have a huge effect on how you and your finances recover from whatever disasters may occur.
Which is why I created the Financial Recovery Workbook. It’s a step-by-step guide to help you get your financial life back on track.
Whether you’re currently in a financial crisis, need to recover from one that’s still affecting your life, or you’d like to avoid taking a serious hit, this workbook can help.
Click on the button below to get your copy of the Financial Recovery Workbook now.