“Found” money is money you weren’t expecting. You might find some cash at the park, get an unexpected refund or even enjoy a share of a large bonus at work. If you’re tightly budgeted, this can seem like just the windfall you need to perk you up. But, don’t head to the mall just yet.
Pay Down Debt
Consider paying off some of your debts with the unexpected cash flow. It’s likely that they are gaining interest on a daily basis, so paying them off now could save you money in the long run. Not only that, but if you have a lump sum to offer, some lenders will accept pennies on the dollar just to close the account. Offer what you can and let them work their way up from there.
Get Ahead on Bills
Maybe you have a hard time putting savings aside. In that case, why not use the extra cash to get ahead on your bills? It’s just like having a savings account in case of an emergency, only you aren’t giving yourself access to the cash in the meantime.
It’s okay to take a bit of the cash and get yourself a treat, but look at the big picture before you go spending everything you have and end up right back in the same spot. You’re surviving as you are right now, so why not use that cash to get a bit ahead of things?