People are finally starting to see the end to the pandemic with the vaccine’s continuous release in different parts of the country. Despite this, it’s still important to avoid being complacent since the virus is still out there.
But it’s not only the virus people should watch out for. They should also continue monitoring their finances so that they won’t get into trouble in the coming months. Here are some things people can do to keep their heads above water financially.
Set a Budget
This is one piece of advice that’s not only limited to a crisis or during the pandemic. Unless you were born with a silver spoon, it’s important to set a budget and stick to it. The government may have resources for you to protect your finances, but it’s always good for you to have your plan.
Setting the budget during these times isn’t the same as the situation before the pandemic. Since there’s a lot of uncertainty on what businesses should expect, you need to cover all your bases. Making sure all your essential expenses are covered should be your priority.
Moreover, you should find ways to save money and add it to your emergency fund. The end of the pandemic may be near, but you wouldn’t know what would happen next. Due to this, increasing your emergency fund while covering all your expenses should be on the top of your to-do list for the moment.
Find a Side Hustle
If you haven’t lost your job during the coronavirus outbreak, you can count yourself as among the lucky ones who are still working. The unemployment rate may have stabilised near the end of 2020, but it’s still elevated. The April 2020 unemployment rate was higher than the unemployment rate during the Great Depression in the 1930s.
Even if you have a job, you should still look for a side hustle or a part-time job to increase your income. If you’re working from home, you can look for other remote work online. There are a lot of sites that offer part-time jobs at a reasonable rate.
The important thing is that you have more than just one income stream. This became apparent after the pandemic started. People were scrambling to find jobs after losing their main source of livelihood.
Pay Your Debts
Having high-interest credit card debt is never a good idea. You may have accumulated this type of debt at the height of the pandemic to pay off unexpected expenses. Despite this, you should start working on paying off this debt and gradually improve your credit score. You can secure a lower interest rate for your credit card debt by looking for a balance transfer credit card.
If you have loans, you can negotiate for lower interest rates as well. While the government suspended student loan payments until the end of January, you should still include this in your budget as one of the debts you need to pay as soon as possible.
Look for Investment Options
The price of the bitcoin breached the $30,000 level recently. Even as it remains volatile, it’s still expected to go up in the coming weeks. While it may be challenging to ride on the cryptocurrency train today, you still have other investment options that you can consider.
You can consider increasing your retirement savings and other similar investment accounts. While the stock market is still volatile, it is expected to recover soon. Many people are seriously considering investing these days since stock prices are low. If you have funds you’re not using in the next few years, you should also seriously consider this.
But before you invest, do your research first. Check the viability of the company in the future. See if it has a chance of growing once the pandemic ends. Avoid putting your investment in companies that are expected to collapse soon. When you invest, always do your research or consult a professional.
Refinance Your Mortgage
With interest rates cut by the feds, you can also consider refinancing your mortgage to take advantage of the low rates. A 0.5 percent reduction in your mortgage rate allows you to save thousands of dollars in future mortgage payments.
You may also want to shorten the length of your loan. You can save money and pay off your mortgage faster if you shorten it from 18 years to 15 years. Additionally, it may not be a requirement, but you can also get the services of an experienced mortgage refinancing lawyer to help you.
The pandemic had a significant effect on the lives of people all over the world. But with its end nearly here, people should start working on their finances to ensure they remain stable once the pandemic finally ends.