Homeless- What Now?
At Some Point,
It has happened to almost everyone. It's the end of the month- your rent is due, and you have no where to turn. Here will be advice- numbers to call, a few ideas and charities that may help you stay off the street, in an ideal world.
This will be my personal experience- what happened to me, what I think you should or shouldn't do, and a few tips that I hope will help you either find a place to go, or help you to get along until you find help.
Got an Eviction Notice
Getting an eviction notice is extremely stressful, but what does it mean? Will they call the police and have me thrown out of my apartment? If you've gotten an eviction notice, you should look over your leasing agreement very carefully to make sure that you know your rights.
If you get the notice, and are not out of the apartment by the time indicated on your notice, they will probably take you to court. This can be a good thing, this gives you more time. Maybe your landlord doesn't have time to go to court, maybe he/ she just won't want to put up with it and agrees to give you more time to pay your rent. Stay positive, and explore every possibility. Getting evicted makes it so much harder to find housing in the future. Do everything in your power to pay that rent. If you can't do it alone,
Search for Local Charities
Many Churches have programs to help people in crises get the help that they desperately need to avoid becoming homeless. There are also many websites that may have the information that you'll need in your area. If you don't have access to a computer, head to a local library, gather as many numbers as you can and start calling. You may get lucky, but funding for these programs is competitive, and said charities only have so much to give per year. If this doesn't work,
They help so many people
Sell your belongings
Try to use eBay for this one if you can- if you don't, try to use Craigslist, or any forum based website. (Beware of scams!) If you don't have time to wait, head to a pawnshop, you will get less but it may get you closer to paying your rent. Having a fantastic baseball collection, nice china or expensive electronics won't mean all that much if you don't have a place to keep them. There are necessities, and there are luxuries. A roof is a necessity. Your Playstation 4 is not.
Ask your family
When times are tough, we turn to the people who love and care about us the most. That is, after all, what your family is for, although admitting to your family that you need assistance can be difficult, it is crucial that you exhaust all options before you have no-where else to turn.
Ask anyone and everyone in your family who are able to help- ask to stay with them until you can get back on your feet. Or maybe offer to pay them back if they will help you with your rent. Hey- being in debt to your brother "dickhead" is better than being not having a place to sleep or shower.
Find a Local Shelter
And make sure they can take you before you are homeless, especially if you live in a big city. Trust me- swallowing your pride and heading to a homeless shelter will hurt SO much more when you are turned away because you haven't done your research. If you have transportation, try your best to find a well funded shelter outside of the inner city- they will have more space, more time to help you in particular, and be more accommodating to you and or your families needs.
Many shelters also have programs to help you get back on your feet. They have programs that can help you pay your debts, find a job, and have programs that can guide you into finding a new, lower cost option for housing.
Have a Car? Live in it!
This is the option that I would NOT recommend to anyone- although this was what I did for about 3 months before I swallowed my pride and finally realized I needed assistance. There are many options that will get you much farther than this. Ask for help. PLEASE.
I am a prideful person, but put your pride aside for a moment and do something that will help you in the long run. I was working the entire time I was homeless, working long hours, underpaid, and exhausted from sleeping on my trucks narrow bench seat. "Showering" with a paper towel and some handsoap in the horrifyingly disgusting men's room at the gas station. Making just enough money so that I could eat, shower, shave, and have a bed for a day of the week.
When I was finally forced to quit my job and tell my boss that I had been living in my truck for almost the full length of my employment- she was beyond bewildered and offered to help me, but that pride kicked in once again, "this isn't so bad- I'm doing fine." Look in the mirror. Don't do it to yourself, or that person or people who need you, swallow your pride.
If there is anything within my power that I can do, don't be shy. If you have any questions or comments, please let me know. Also- if my article has helped you in any way- tell me. It would really brighten my day. Good luck,