The COVID-19 pandemic has brought many uncertainties to our personal and professional lives. Companies from around the world are forced to consolidate, and many are reducing their payroll expenses by lowering salaries or letting people go. Without a doubt, the coronavirus pandemic is having a big impact on US job seekers and professionals.
Losing a job is never easy, and bouncing back from it can be a tough challenge and a lengthy process. If you fear that you might be let go in the near future, you need to start preparing by optimizing and solidifying your finances. If you’ve already been let go, don’t worry, there’s plenty you can do to bridge this career gap financially until you find a new job in your country or maybe even abroad.
So today, we’ll be taking a look at the most important money management tips to survive unemployment or prep for an impending job loss.
Revise and optimize your budget
The road to financial stability and safety, despite any challenge in life, starts with meticulous planning and analysis. Your first order of business should be to put pen to paper and analyze your financial situation across the board.
Start planning your finances by listing all your expenses. Compare your monthly expenses with your current earnings, and start weeding out the costs and fees you can live without. Remember, minimizing expenses is the first step towards stability when you’re unemployed.
Proceed to analyze your curated list of expenses when compared to your current situation and how much you expect to have during your unemployment period. You can further cut your expenses by making small lifestyle adjustments by cancelling recurring payments and subscriptions, saving money on utilities, and minding your electricity use around the house.
Find and develop supplementary income streams
The gig economy is on the rise around the world, and when you’re faced with potential unemployment, it’s important to start looking for supplementary income streams in this industry. You can try to land remote jobs either as a contingent worker or even a full-time employee, but your main focus is to use freelancing and digital work to bridge the financial gap until you find a new job in your industry.
Keep in mind that you don’t need to limit yourself to your specific set of skills. The gig economy is open to people with various skillsets and talents, and you don’t need to have a formal education to start working for companies and individuals online. If you have a talent or a skill that you can monetize on the side, then make sure to begin immediately and to start building a financial safety net.
Look for a better credit card program
When you’re unemployed and during a period when you’re searching for a new job, the last thing you want is for your credit card plan to jeopardize your financial standing. Accruing credit card debt or paying exuberant fees can severely impact your finances, so it’s important to find a better plan or provider during this period. A good credit card plan to look for is one with zero or minimal interest fees, which is a popular trend in Australia nowadays.
The Australian market is a good example of payment and credit card flexibility, and currently the plans like the humm90 interest free credit card in Australia are extremely popular because they allow card holders to avoid interest fees completely on their credit card spending. Wherever you’re currently located around the world, though, make sure to look for these types of credit card programs and providers that will waive these fees and help you save as much money as possible during this period.
Apply for unemployment benefits
It should go without saying, but if you expect to be out of a job or if you’ve just been laid off, make sure to apply for unemployment benefits right away. Currently, countries all over the world are revising their policies on unemployment benefits to accommodate the needs of those affected by the pandemic, so you are likely to get a better deal and better financial support.
This will help overcome this financial hurdle and allow you to focus on your job search and look for a job in all the right places. Don’t hesitate to apply for unemployment immediately after losing your job in order to avoid falling into financial distress.
Use your smartphone to control your spending
Last but not least, be sure to mind your spending and stick to your new budget. You can leverage technology to achieve this and use various mobile apps to control your spending on a daily, weekly, and monthly basis.
Be sure to log every expense into your mobile app and monitor your budget carefully. Set alarms and notifications within the app to get notified every time you run the risk of breaching your budget constraints, and get an idea of how you can spend less.
Over to you
Unemployment is a stressful time, but there’s plenty you can do to stay financially stable until you find a new job. With these tips in mind, you can prepare for unemployment and bridge this period without any significant financial distress.