Lockdown photo by Matt Seymour on Unsplash
Lockdown has become a part of life and now more than ever, you need to know how to manage your finances responsibly. Handling money is a basic life skill that everybody ought to have. The sooner we get used to it, the better.
While you can’t control the stock market and you can’t stop businesses from liquidating, that doesn’t mean you can’t take control of your finances during lockdown. Upon the ladder of financial liberation are five simple steps:
1. Hunt for Help
There’s no point wasting your time with denial. If your situation is truly dire, you know who to dial. There are countless debt solution services out there. See if you can go online and compare the different terms and conditions to suit your needs.
Upgrade your financial literacy and if the pandemic has affected your income, let those creditors and lenders know. The more upfront you are, the smoother things will go for you even after the lockdown.
2. Cut Your Costs, Stretch your Savings
There’s no need to pile up your credit card debt, especially when the economy is weak. If there’s a spending habit that isn’t doing you any good, nip it in the bud as you go through your budget. You’ll soon find funds trickling down into your savings which can be used to drown all of your debts for good.
Find alternative ways to entertain yourself and don’t be afraid to change things around. If you can’t go to the movie theatre, bring the movie theatre into your home. Make a night of it with homemade popcorn and your other favorite treats.
3. Forget About Stockpiling
It’s easy to fall into the temptation of panic buying – we all want to be prepared for the future – but you don’t need to buy a year’s supply of toilet paper. What happens when the pandemic and lockdown are over and you’re stuck with more than you know what to do with?
There’s nothing wrong with planning and preparing, it just has to be done the right way. Have an idea of what you’ll be cooking for a good two weeks so you don’t have to keep going back to the store for more stuff.
From snacks to toiletries and even those secret ingredients you use to spice up your meals, make sure you have just enough to see you through the near future.
Photo by Courtney Cook on UnSplash
4. Prepare for the Worst
Things are so unpredictable right now. One minute someone is dancing in the sunlight, the next minute they’re bedridden. Sometimes life throws curveballs at us at the worst times, and if we aren’t well prepared, there can be dire consequences.
With this in mind, be sure to add something to your ‘rainy day fund’ whenever you can. The last thing you want is to go around borrowing money when everyone else is in similarly difficult circumstances.
5. Operation Debt Destruction
The last thing you need right now is a budget parasite. Your money should be doing worthwhile things for you, not covering your tracks. If you’ve been able to access any government assistance packages, don’t be tempted to squander the money. Instead, make an effort to pay off more than the required monthly fee on your debt as this will keep you ahead and cushion you against the uncertainty of the future.
Though times may be tough during lockdown, it’s important to take a moment to be grateful that you’re able to plan for survival. Don’t be overwhelmed – this isn’t the first pandemic and lockdown the world has faced. This too shall pass. Follow these five tips, keep a positive mindset, and hope for the best.