Over the course of the year, COVID-19 has spread across the globe and has sadly claimed over 750,000 lives. Uncertainty in a ton of industries, rising unemployment and a rapidly declining economy has resulted in public restlessness. Global stock markets have plummeted more than they did during the 2007 – 2009 recession and 100’s of globally recognised brands have been lost due to loss in demand.
These rather scary times have led people to worry about their financial future. However, there are a few ways of financially overcoming the COVID-19 pandemic. To get through these unprecedented times, you can take a few simple steps to manage your budget more sensibly.
Though COVID-19 will have a negative impact for the rest of the year, smart decisions will help you maintain a healthy financial situation even if you have certain outgoings for things like paying off your brand new car or a guarantor loan.
Re-evaluate Your Current Budget
Every well-managed household runs with a well thought out budget. But, due to uncertainty with income, you may need to put measures in place to ensure that your expenses do not increase.
You’ll need to re-evaluate your current budget and then sort out your expenses in order of relevance and importance. In an ideal world, you should try to figure out if you can completely get rid of some expenses in order to free up some more of your money. Unessential expenses could include those on entertainment, eating out and splashing out on new clothing.
Never Ignore Your Credit Card Payments
With all non-essential shops now being closed for 3 months, you may think it’s an odd time to worry about your credit card payments. But you should never delay making your credit card repayments even during a global crisis.
The credit card companies charge a high rate of interest on pending payments, and this can directly affect your credit rating. Your other bills such as your electricity should also be paid in full and on time.
Stock Up, But Don’t Go Mad
The nationwide lockdown has made stocking up on certain items essential. While it’s wise to avoid going to the supermarket, buying enough supplies to last you a month will be long enough to keep you going. Don’t be one of those people that buy 20kg of pasta and 100 toilet rolls each time you go shopping.
Stay Alert and Keep a Look Out For Scams
Sadly, even while the world deals with a pandemic, there’s still people trying to take advantage of the current situation. With so many people anxious about their finances, many are becoming victims to fraud. Be wary of unsolicited phone calls and emails, especially ones that request money or sensitive personal information.
Never give out any of your personal information to businesses or individuals and don’t fall victim to scams that ask you to get your money by clicking on a link. If you’re in doubt, get a second opinion from a friend or look up those who’ve gotten in contact with you.
If You’re an Investor, Avoid Panic Selling
If you’re an investor, then the freefall in the global stock market has probably made it quite uneasy. And, you may have a strong impulse to sell your assets to minimise your losses but this the worst thing you can do. The value of most stocks will stabilise once life starts going back to normal.
Continue Putting Money Into Your Savings Fund(s)
Even if you find yourself lower on money, you should still try to put some money into your savings fund(s) on a regular basis. That way, you’ll have a stash of money put away that you can use when you really need it or for that holiday that you’ve always dreamed about.
Don’t Worry! You’ll Get Through This
By following these simple steps, you’ll be able to get through this current storm and come out the other side financially unharmed. More importantly, though, when things get back to normal, you’ll find yourself in a better position than you were pre-lockdown.