If you are experiencing financial hardship because of the COVID-19 pandemic, it is important to know your options and proactively seek out services and resources. We are here to help support your financial wellbeing and have compiled our top 5 tips for staying financially fit during these trying times. Click here to watch the video or keep reading for tools you can use to address your current needs and keep an eye toward your longer-term goals.
1. Proactively reach out to lenders if you think you are going to miss payments.
If you are concerned about how you are going to make your mortgage payment or other debts, it’s critical that you call and talk to your lender about options before you miss a payment. It’s not going to be an easy phone call to make, but it’s an extremely important one. You are not the only one making it at this time. Proactive communication is the key, and your lender can often work with you on a solution, but only if you contact them early with your concerns. Also, if you are not in the place to make your credit card minimum monthly payments due to the current situation, call your credit card company to talk about your options there. Perhaps they can adjust your due date, accept a smaller amount, or change your interest rate.
2. Create a personal budget.
Track your expenses and create or recreate your budget. Click here to watch a video about creating and tracking your budget.
3. Before making a purchase, ask yourself “do I need this? Or do I want this?”
Before making a purchase, ask yourself “do I need this? Or do I want this?” This is especially true with online shopping. It seems like everywhere is having a big sale right now, and it’s a way to pass the time, but it can also result in some hefty credit card bills and more stress in the long run.
4. Start building Peace of Mind Savings: 3 – 6 month reserve funds for essential expenses.
Financial planners recommend that we have 3-6 months of savings in place to cover our basic monthly expenses like housing, grocery and utilities should we lose our job or should life happen to you and yours. Have you calculated what your essential monthly expenses are and how much you would need to have in place? If you are able, now is a great time to put away some peace of mind savings. Perhaps consider starting a new savings plan with the money you are saving from not shopping online or eating out less. Or take a set amount from each check and start to build up your peace of mind savings today. We know it’s a tough time for many of us. Don’t be intimidated with the full 3 – 6 month goal. Start with whatever you can whenever you can. Getting started is the biggest step.
5. If you own your home, consider refinancing.
Now may be a good time to consider a mortgage refinance, which may help lower your monthly mortgage payment and free up some room in your monthly budget. Call us at 505.983.9473 to talk with one of our mortgage experts and find out if a refinance may be a good tool for helping you achieve your financial goals and meet your current financial needs.
Do you have questions? Call us at 505.983.9473 and speak with one of our team members. You’ve got this, and Homewise is here to help.