What would you do with $5000? Based on the stories below, it seems that a lot of people could use that money to get themselves out of a sticky situation. Here are the life problems people would solve if they came across a couple of grand:
#1 So Close, Yet So Far
I owe $3,000 for classes I did not sign up for or attend. I talked to my advisor and told him I needed to pull out for a semester due to life circumstances. I have a full-time job, I am a full-time mom, I am a full-time student, and I drive my mother 120 miles every other day for three months for radiation treatment). He said no problem; he'd take care of it. I went to enroll for the next semester and this happened. I fought it for a number of years before just giving up. I'm one year away from a bachelor's degree in psychology, and because of this nonsense, it'll never happen.
#2 The Last Chance
My dad is dying of cancer. $5,000 would allow me to take my family of five to fly to see him for a week. That amount could also cover the price of a hotel and rental car. We’ve seen each other once in five years and he has less than six months to live. The kids have also never met my grandma and most of my family including siblings that live there.
#3 Paying Debts
Combined with an unexpected bonus (which is literally unheard of with my company before now), it would pay off a loan of mine. Freeing up $300 a month to pay off the rest of my debts would allow me to be debt-free in roughly a year. Just freeing up that $300 a month would give me a whole lot of breathing room. I'm sure there are a lot of people in a similar position.
#4 Life And Death
Buying my insulin. $2,273 for a three-month supply. My insurance restarts next month and I have to meet my deductible, then I pay 20% of that. That's just my insulin, not test strips or pump supplies. Makes me wonder if it's worth it to stay alive at times. I am type 1, not type 2, so not using insulin is not a choice and it's not based on my lifestyle.
#5 Back To Normal
I came into a decent chunk of money earlier this year and I ended up paying off a lot of debt and helping my older parents with a bunch of their stuff. I still had to chop off roughly 75% of my list of things that I wanted to get done. I did get a sweet shiatsu massage chair for after work... that was like the only "fun" thing I can think of. Stress levels are back to normal now regarding money.
#6 Plumbing Issues
$5,000 would clear most of my debt and I could finally get a plumber to fix the toilet and shower. I've tried homemade cleaners with baking soda and vinegar and all, store brought drain cleaner, industrial drain cleaner, a large plunger, and a home drain snake. I don't think we can quite reach where the blockage is with what we have. The people living here before us clogged the drains rather deliberately in the shower and sinks, we did have a guy come out, he plunged it but he didn't fix it (he obviously took the money though).
#7 Dental Problems
I basically need my whole mouth reconstructed (both arches) and all new teeth. I’ve called every time I’ve been told, on time, and have never gotten anywhere and it’s too far to get to just ‘drop-in,’ nor would they accept a patient that way anyhow from what I’ve been told. I’ve thought about an online fund, but I’ve browsed the different campaigns for dental-related things and even small-time local celebs raise next to nothing on there. I’ve resigned myself to living with what I have until it either kills me (infection) or I’m able to improve my credit enough to finance it.
#8 Smile Struggles
I have CareCredit, however initially didn’t qualify for more than $2,000, presumably due to a lack of credit history as I’m VERY young—which adds to how miserable it feels to have no smile, for my technically-fiancé to have never seen me smile with teeth—I have zero confidence, I’m meek and timid as hell because I’ve adapted and hidden my teeth in a variety of ways. I just want to smile, man. And take a bite of an apple. And eat crisp, crunchy veggies.
#9 In The Hole
I could probably gift $5K to a couple of people and have my wife not notice, but I don't know. Am I that well off? I don't think so. I'm still terrified of being $5K in the hole, when I can pay that right now for me, much less some internet random. Dang it, man. I'm 20 years on from that, but that debt fear is real and it STAYS.
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#10 A New Start
I managed to move out of my abusive parents' house twice now, and I am sleeping on a mattress. The only furniture I have is the desk I managed to grab for free. I planned to continue going to school and finish that, so money is scarce. Buying furniture, decent clothes, and other living basics would be immediately solved with $5K.
#11 Trip To The ER
Take my dog to the vet. I just got home from work, and my dog is super sick. He has been having accidents in the house for the last couple of days, and now he's super lethargic and shaking. And his regular vet closed like, half an hour ago. So, yeah... I'd take his little furry self to the rather expensive pet ER.
#12 The List Goes On
I'd get a new water heater, fix my severely cracked windshield, fix the front bumper on my car that’s been messed up since a month after I bought it (it was hit overnight by someone who decided not to stick around), buy my kids' school supplies and clothes, finish the bathroom in the basement, and fill in the gaping hole in my basement. That would about knock $5k out it think. Quite a few problems solved though.
#13 A Surprise Visit
I could visit my mom and stepdad in Houston. For context, I live in Mexico, about eight hours away from Houston, so it's about 100-150 bucks to travel there by bus. My stepfather has offered to pay but I have refused mainly because every time I visit his house, he spends quite some money on me that I feel I should at least pay for the bus tickets.
#14 Downward Spiral
My husband lost his job. Things went downhill for a while. Both our cars needed repairs, and eventually, both were scrapped, but we just ate through our savings. My husband has a new job now. It is a two-hour drive away. He commutes for four hours a day, wasting $900 a month in gas. Because we have little savings left, and we are spending so much money on travel, we can't afford a down payment on a house closer to his work. The rental market there is non-existent. $5,000 could put our family in a new house, and my husband could be home for dinner with his kids again.
#15 A Safety Net
When I started working and filed taxes for the first time, I messed up. The California FTB assumed I made the same income in each of the last five years and sent me a bill for the previous five years' taxes, interest, and penalties. Turns out, there's a special form for first-time taxpayers that I didn't use. I just wrote a letter explaining that I didn't have any income in prior years. They accepted my explanation. Much simpler than I had imagined. $5K would have been a great safety net should anything have gone wrong.
#16 A Starting Point
A car. I'm a single parent with a special needs child. I have pretty much zero money. I couldn't even afford a fishing license so my son and I wouldn't be trapped in my house. Getting a car would allow me transportation so I can work part-time next month when my son starts school again. And I think five grand would be enough to get me a car to last a few years until I get more financially stable.
#17 Endless Desires
Medical debt. I’m fully insured. Went to my PCP who said I was too sick to treat there and to go to the ER. I did. I’m better. My portion for 5 hours and tests? $3,600. I’d use the rest to pay off my car. Or a REAL vacation that includes a hotel with a pool. Or an IPad. Or my kids' school clothes shopping. Or new flooring. Or a new couch. Or... Oh my God, it’s endless!
#18 Make It Official
Actually getting my degree. I graduated but I still owe my university a whole lot of money (about $5,400) and they won't give me my degree unless I pay it all. I can't get a job still because where I live, most reputable companies ask for an attested university degree so they can provide employees with a work permit. I have almost got three job offers except that I could provide a degree.
#19 Puppy First
Honestly? I saved $3,000 last year after finally landing a job that feels like a career. I saved the money to buy myself a "you finally made it" gift. A jet ski. Then my 9-year-old pup got sick and it all went to her. We spent months trying to get her kidneys to play nice. I'm happy to report she's doing great now, and her kidney disease is managed. She's happy and mostly healthy. So... I'd buy a jet ski. But, if she got sick again, I'd probably do the same.
#20 Fix My Car, Please
My car has had issues all summer. I've basically had one week of driving it since the summer began. First the starter, then some sensors, then the fuel pump, but we tested the ignition coil at the same time and it was going out. $5K could buy me a better used one or repair this current one to dang fine working shape.
#21 Life Improvements
I could completely pay off my credit card debt, which is $1K. I'd completely service my car, which would include replacing my spare from the blowout in the middle of the desert after I picked up my kids from visiting family for the summer. That'd be $1K tops. I'd buy art supplies that I need... That's $200? I’m on disability and I entertain myself by making art. People love it but I still haven’t figured out a way to make a profit. The rest would go into savings since I decimated my savings to buy a house in the ghetto for me and my kids.
#22 Playing It Safe
I'd start my dream dessert food truck business that I keep making excuses for starting. I'm a little stressed right now, so I don't give a dang talking about it, but my first depression episode really knocked me out of thinking I could make anything successful out of myself, or even taking the proper steps to get it going. So I'll just keep doing a boring job because it's safe.
#23 Crippling Debt
Bills are piling up and I'm trying to find work but I've come across nothing yet. My country's welfare is great, but with my current bills, there is no way I can make it all work. I used to live with a girlfriend—she left me, and I lived alone in our two-bedroom apartment for a few months which didn't help with the bills as I was studying at the time. After I finished studying, I couldn't find work, so even a fraction of $5,000 would mean I could at least pay some of my bills and hopefully make a deal about my debt.
#24 Lyft For Now
I live in Nashville and have no car. I have spent approximately $13,500 on Lyft rides to and from work over the past year and a half. The expense of getting to and from work has prevented me from saving enough money to buy a cheap car. I know that some people are suffering greatly and that I have no right to complain at all, really. I’d just like the opportunity to be able to cut my commuting costs enough so that I can save some money and be able to visit my family and to be able to have a life outside of work. If this remains my greatest trouble, I know full well that I am truly fortunate.
#25 Giving Back
My dad has wanted to retire from the gas company he’s worked for for 30 years and he gets to in three years. He’s never had the time to buy stainless steel equipment to be able to be permitted to sell his pickles, salsas, and other foods. He’s always had a dream to start a restaurant (his food is phenomenal) but unfortunately, guys who do that kind of work don’t last very long after they retire because of medical issues and the fact that they’re just used to moving and moving. It’s not a lot of money, but I would do anything in the world to see my dad succeed and make him happy.
#26 Good Footing
I could have a solid meal, buy toiletries, and replace the ten-year-old clothing from high school I still have to wear. I could pay down the debt I owe the phone company from when I lost my job and have a cell phone again. I could get on my meds again. I would finally be able to get ON my feet, for the first time as an adult after escaping my abusive family.
#27 Coming Home
I’d be able to visit my family without thinking twice. I went through some major debt trouble that I’m just now getting out of, so I’m incredibly reluctant to spend anything I’ve saved that’s beyond my monthly “fun money” budget. At this rate, I won’t be traveling until May 2020 (I’ll have finished saving for my 6 month’s nest by then), and — being very family-oriented with aging parents — it’s killing me inside to have to wait so long.
This question definitely helped me appreciate how far I’ve come through, compared to where I was at the start of 2019. I actually have savings now, I’m debt-free, and I have a realistic financial plan that I can adhere to! $5,000 would help me reach my goals faster, but I’m much less in need of it than other folks.
#28 Wishful Thinking
All of them. My fiancé left us with nothing but a broken fridge... Rent is a month behind ($1,200) and my storage unit is about to be sold at an auction ($800). A fridge full of food would change our lives (NO MORE COOLER!). We also no longer have a vehicle. With $2,000, there’d be a car, insurance, and registration. Just fantasizing about that felt good.
#29 A Helping Hand
I’d be able to go visit my friends. Their mom just passed away three days before her wedding and she was an awesome mom to both of her girls (and to me, I always felt like family). I could help with funeral expenses for them, and I could buy groceries and cook their food for them and the family while I’m there. To top it off, the bride and her groom both lost their jobs two weeks before their wedding (very good people, hard workers). I just want to help them out. I just moved across the country, so I’m strapped at the moment.
#30 Better Hearing
Hearing aids. I was always told they wouldn't help because I have no eardrum or bones in my left ear. I work at a nursing home and just for kicks tried on a hearing aid from a resident that moved out and it worked. Then I went and found out that the one that would fit me, because of reconstructive surgery I had would cost about three grand. I'd give the rest of the money to the animal shelter near me.
#31 A Much-Needed Boost
Combined with a work bonus, it would take care of my car loan. That would save me an extra $230 per month. If I get $5,000 alone, then I could pay off the high-interest rate student loan and while that would mean only 60 bucks worth of saving, well it is still 60 bucks more in my pocket or it can go towards gas. It doesn't fully take care of my student debt or car loans but it definitely takes some of the pressure off. Honestly, $5,000 seems like a lot of money but it really isn't much when it comes to student loans. If loans weren't a problem, that money would be a blessing because it can easily be a rainy day fund.
#32 A Big Help
It would be freeing to get that much right now. I could pay back my two friends who put money down to help me move away from my toxic family. I'd also be able to buy some kind of car so I'm not cycling in 100-degree weather. I'd still be working in 100-degree weather but it'd be nice for a cool commute and make groceries easier. After paying off my debt and getting a car, I'd be able to begin saving on my budget sooner rather than putting savings towards paying debts.
#33 Make It Legit
I'm a newbie beekeeper. I'll have a honey harvest next year, but I'm in a state where you need to have a dedicated preparation area away from pets and register for a food license under cottage food law. This will be really hard to do. $5,000 would help me turn my basement workroom (the previous homeowner was a photographer, so he made a darkroom) into a honey processing facility so that I can follow the law completely. As of now, it looks like I'm just going to be bottling for myself and friends because I don't have a facility, and renting out a commercial kitchen is very expensive... And in my state, you cannot sell cottage foods at all without licenses and inspections.
#34 Rich In Pesos
Man, $5K is 95,217 Mexican pesos, I could do so much with that. It's 6.4k pesos to get my four wisdom teeth out. Then I'd get braces. I'd get some new clothes because I haven't had money to buy clothes in like five years; they're mostly ratty hand me downs. Most importantly, I could do all that AND pay my degree which is 10,500 pesos. I could also move to a city where I can use that degree. I'd probably still have some leftovers. Ugh, anyone wanna send me $5k?
#35 A Big Celebration
I would be able to do many things that would improve our lives, get rid of some debt, save for a bigger house, get my partner driving... But really I'd like to marry the love of my life. Been together ten years. Two kids and he is my best friend. He proposed in 2013 and we've never managed to even start saving. We'd love that day to celebrate with friends and family.
#36 House Reno Dreams
I would finish the renovations my mom started in our house 9-10 years ago, which (amongst other things) means we have to flush the toilet with a bucket, and there's no hot water in the kitchen... I would finish those renovations, so I can finally host guests in our house. I never appreciated the freedom to host guests until we lost it.
#37 Still Borrowing
Next weekend, My wife and I are finally moving to a place large enough for our whole family. We live paycheck to paycheck and saved just enough to cover the $2,000 deposit. We will no doubt have to borrow the first month's rent from friends and family to get us through the month of August. It would be nice if we didn't have to borrow the money from anyone. My wife and I work very hard and really only spend money on bills and our children. It would be nice to be ahead of the bills for the first time in a long time.
#38 Special Medicine
I would use it to find a doctor that could help cure me of the non-stop daily pain from the form of nerve entrapment syndrome in my stomach as not much is known on how to cure or manage it other than opioids. As great as they are for painkilling, they aren't great for long term use. For anyone wondering, my condition is called Abdominal Cutaneous Nerve Entrapment Syndrome.
#39 Increasing The Odds
I recently had multiple heart attacks and a triple bypass, which was further complicated by an infection in the surgical site that progressed to the bones. It's getting better but I am no longer able to ride my motorcycle (it's all I've had for 15+years). I now have physical therapy three times a week as well as multiple doctors appointments, some an hour away. I can't work currently because I could still die, so money is beyond screwed. $50,00 would get me a car that I could get to these appointments and greatly increase the odds that I'll see my daughter's next birthday.
#40 Tooth Aches
Dental work. Due to a medical condition and medications, I have lost most of my teeth. The dentist we first went to wanted $12K to save them all. We laughed at him, then went to the most run-down looking dentist that some friends recommended. They said I need $33,000 to fix them or have them removed. I'd also need dentures for $6000. I hate the thought of having dentures at 37.
#41 Hard Times
Right now, I have $13 in my bank account. I've got rice and beans, and access to a garden, but I don't have money for the credit card bill or car insurance next month. I've also got a broken filling that's alright as long as I don't chew on that side. And I've got student loans but let's ignore those because I'm not making money. On the plus side, I'm getting calls back for jobs on Craigslist and should be able to get into a construction job and out of this mess.
#42 A Generous Friend
I would give it to my best friends (a married couple) who lost their first son at 36.5 weeks less than a year ago and just had a miscarriage at 10 weeks. They’re still fighting tons of medical bills for the delivery. She almost died, then they had a miscarriage and she needed another procedure to save her.
They’re the best people I’ve ever met and are so happy together. This has changed them forever and sometimes I think a little financial boost would help ease some stresses for them to get healthier and try for a family again. I have the means to give them money but they would never accept it from me. It would also probably negatively affect our relationship. I’ve been trying to think about how to anonymously give them a “windfall” in the sense of bills going away, etc.
#43 Waiting For A Miracle
If someone just gave me $5,000, I would pay off most of my credit card debt in a heartbeat and then buy Christmas presents for my family. This year may be the tightest financial year I've experienced, but I'm determined to figure something out. I am doing my best with what I have; that is, working two jobs, looking for more work, and hoping for a quasi-Christmas miracle. (Most mornings I wake up silently terrified, but I 'keep calm and carry on.') Here's hoping for some good news.
#44 A Game Of Catch-Up
All my debts would be paid off and I could afford a new bathroom suite before my toilet breaks. I would also be my spending money for a holiday I booked before I became a homeowner. I'm not going to lie, $5,000 would feel like a lottery win at the moment; the relief would be immense. It would feel so nice to just be debt-free and saving rather than always trying to play catch-up.
#45 Truck Upgrades
I would finish doing some stuff to my truck, such as getting all four rims fully restored, repainting the roof rack because the original color has faded with time, a decent trunk mat, replacing all interior and exterior bulbs to put LED ones, a little upholstery work on the seats and a nice touch screen with a good sound system. As for the rest, I would put it in my bank account, one doesn't know what kind of emergency could happen in the future.
#46 Get Ahead
Get my kid’s next year in university paid for. He decided to help a charity this summer for much lower pay than expected; he will earn enough for the first semester but will need to work during school to pay for the second semester. It’s not the most dramatic of problems, but I would prefer to help him focus on studies exclusively. He’s so happy helping at this kid’s camp though and I am proud of the work he’s doing.
#47 The Hardest Year
I lost my job about a year ago and I have been trying to live on unemployment, but it's not enough to pay all my bills. I would use that money to pay for a lawyer to file for bankruptcy which would save me from getting sued and having wages garnished in the future. Unfortunately at this point, my credit is ruined and it's my best option. Any leftover I would get things out of the pawnshop and catch up on behind car payments so my car is not repossessed. This has been the hardest year of my life.
#48 Show Me Your Teeth
It might not be solved, but at least I could get a handle on it. My teeth are in terrible shape. I have a genetic condition that causes crowding and a very dry mouth. This has led to four of my teeth cracking and a losing battle with decay despite brushing and flossing regularly. I would love to have $5,000 to throw at crowns for my front teeth. I haven't smiled with my teeth in three years. My youngest daughter has never seen my full smile. It makes me extremely sad typing that.
#49 Canine Cavities
I would get my dog's tooth fixed. She just randomly broke a tooth, and the vet has no idea what to do about it since I can't shell out the $1.5K to $2K for a dental X-ray and extraction. the piece of tooth I found on the floor looks as if it rotted from the inside, which makes him think that she needs a dental X-ray to see if there's anything more going on. The only good news is that what's left in her mouth is clean.
#50 Slowly Dying
Dentist stuff. I have my wisdom teeth still, plus a number of teeth decaying like mad, and an abscess in one of my molars. Sometimes they don't hurt at all. Sometimes, I feel like ending myself. It's pretty random overall. I am just already so strapped for cash right now, especially since we're down a paycheck due to injury. Even a $50 a month kind of thing is a huge deal right now. The last time I had any work done, it cost me $3,000 to get it numbed so I could sleep through the pain. I still haven't paid most of that off and am hoping it's not festering too badly under the surface.