The COVID-19 pandemic has had severe global health and adverse economic effects. If you’ve suddenly found yourself without a job due to your company’s rapid closure or your small business going under, there are actions you can take to protect your finances and gain some financial stability.
Losing a job can be an extremely traumatic experience. Once your job is gone, you have no regular paychecks to count on and to budget with every month. Although a sudden job loss can create a variety of emotions and problems, the issues associated with it may be a lot easier to deal with if proper planning is done.
Here are 7 simple steps you can take today to ease the financial misfortune:
Step #1 – Take Stock:
The first step to take in the case of a sudden job loss is to take a thorough “inventory” of your complete financial picture. This includes money that is kept in checking accounts, savings accounts, and other liquid assets that might be accessed in a time of need. You need to know exactly what’s coming in and what’s going out. Is there money you can move around or have access to if you really need it? Are there things you could sell in a pinch to get some money to cover important expenses such as rent, mortgage, utilities, etc. You need to know these things first before you can move on to the next step.
Step #2 – Create An Emergency Budget:
A simple list of expenses or monthly accounting will provide a straightforward guide as to what your monthly expenses may be and what you are expected to pay out each month. A budget may allow you to figure out how long you can afford to be unemployed, and whether or not you are able to pay current bills now to avoid getting behind. You can use our free online Budget Builder tool to help you: www.onlinebudgetadvisor.com
Step #3 – Build An Amazing Resume:
Your job hunt begins with a high-quality resume that exemplifies professionalism and attention to detail. The key is to take your time and build a comprehensive snapshot of your recent career moves, making sure to highlight key components that may be relevant to any jobs that you want to apply for. There are free grammar and spelling tools such as Grammarly to help you proof-read and find any mistakes before you send it off. Check it out here: www.grammarly.com
Step #4 – Alert Creditors If Unable To Pay:
The best way to avoid creating an expensive and unpleasant situation with creditors is to stay in touch, frequently. Although it may seem scary to some, letting creditors know your situation may not only keep them at bay longer, but may also open other doors for you to save money. Some creditors, for example, may offer a temporary forbearance on debt that may allow you to skip a payment or two with no added cost or negative credit ramifications. If you are not able to work anything out with creditors, then a non-profit credit counseling agency may be able to assist you. Their credit counseling service should always be free of charge.
Step #5 – Avoid Unnecessary Spending:
If you are now out of a job, the last thing you want to do is blow funds on frivolous things. These may include getting take out or delivery of food, shopping online for things you don’t really need, or signing up for some new subscription service. Make sure to spend each and every dollar wisely in order to stretch your funds as much as possible.
Step #6 – Quickly Get A Temporary Or Side Job:
The modern world has created a variety of jobs that can be done part-time. You could consider driving for Uber Eats, Door Dash, or Grub Hub, for example, and be able to work only the hours you desire to do so. Those types of services are in high demand right now with restaurants being shut down, but still able to offer delivery options. There are many other opportunities to earn extra cash as well, including doing chores for others, being a personal shopper, and even taking online surveys. Many of these can be done from the comfort of your home to help you practice safe social distancing during the pandemic.
Step #7 – Keep Your Head Up:
Your mental frame of mind can play a big role in how long you may be jobless. It is imperative to remain optimistic and to find the “silver lining”. Becoming depressed or fostering negativity will only lead to more problems, and that is not going to assist you in your cause. Although being jobless can be extremely stressful and challenging, view it as a task that you must overcome. Keeping the situation on a positive light may not only help you maintain your sanity, but may also assist you in finding the next perfect opportunity.
Free Printable Expense Chart:
Use the following expense chart from the Frugal Mama website to see where your money is going. Knowing this, you will be able to make the necessary lifestyle changes to get through this very difficult time: http://www.frugal-mama.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/10/PrintableChartTrackingSpendingDailyExpenses.pdf
Becoming unemployed for a brief period of time is not the end of the world, despite it feeling that way. Keep your head about you and stay focused. Stick to your game plan and work hard at keeping things together and being upbeat. This will allow you to succeed at overcoming this challenge just as you have overcome previous challenges.
Reach out to family and friends (virtually) for some help or advice. Someone’s company may be expanding rapidly during this tumultuous time, and they could be looking for your help!