Between the old Yiddish proverb declaring, "Man plans and God laughs," and Benjamin Franklin's assertion that, "Nothing can be said to be certain, except death and taxes," there's one clear imperative: Life is full of surprises. Unfortunately, some of these surprises can be less pleasant than others.
Just because catastrophe strikes, however, doesn't mean you can't recoup your losses and move on. Lucky for you, several professionals can help you overcome everything from minor inconveniences to massive incidents. Read on for a roundup of three common catastrophes along with which professionals can help see you through.
Scenario 1: Your pipes freeze. Your new best friend? A plumber.
More than 250,000 American families have their homes destroyed every year when pipes freeze and burst, according to State Farm. This inconvenient and expensive phenomenon is caused by a "perfect storm" of three factors: rapid drops in temperature, improperly set thermostats, and inadequate insulation.
But frozen pipes don't have to progress to burst pipes. If you turn on your faucets during a cold spell and nothing comes out, step away from the hair dryer, stop what you're doing and call a plumber. Doing so can mean the difference between a return to normal and 250 gallons of water a day spewing from a cracked pipe into your home.
Of course, no treatment is as effective as prevention. Taking a proactive approach to your plumbing through regular check-ups and routine maintenance can spare you headache and heartache during winter weather.
Scenario 2: You become injured or disabled due to the negligence of someone else. Your new best friend? A personal injury attorney.
Between car and truck accidents, medical malpractice, slips and falls, construction accidents, amusement park accidents, and other events, Americans suffer millions of personal injuries every year. And while accidents and resulting injuries may be impossible to predict, they are in many cases possible to prevent.
Think these figures sound like an exaggeration? Think again. Dog bites alone cause 4.5 million injuries every year, according to the CDC. Even worse? Nearly one out of every five dog bites becomes infected.
The takeaway? While a dog bite may not be in your future, another debilitating injury may be. If and when one occurs, a personal injury lawyer can act as your advocate and advisor in helping you get the compensation you deserve.
Scenario 3: You lose your job and can't pay your mortgage. Your new best friend? Your lender.
While many people think of loan offers as the enemy, the fact is that they don't want you to default on your mortgage any more than you do. If you don't have mortgage protection insurance or adequate "rainy day" funds to help you weather the storm until you can generate income again, your lender can actually become a critical resource.
In fact, many lenders are willing to work with families during periods of hardship, but only if you contact them before your mortgage is delinquent. Why? Because missing even a single payment can tank your ability to qualify for forbearance programs, which simply defers the missed payments for a set period of time. Just beware that the funds will eventually come due -- either tacked on upon the completion of your mortgage or amortized over the course of your loan.
When life takes a turn for the worse, another expression can help you persevere, "The only way out is through." These three professionals, in particular, can become invaluable lifelines when it comes to overcoming the unexpected and regaining control over your life. One last thing to note? The sooner you enlist their aid, the better-positioned they'll be to guide you toward recovery.