There are endless reasons to worry about COVID-19, but personal finances do not have to be one of them. Whether you lost your job, were furloughed, or are simply unsure about your financial future in these uncertain times, there are a few easy steps we all can take to feel better. The first step: work with the experts at Saddle River Capital Management.
Why You Should See a Financial Planner
The best time to see a financial planner is yesterday; the second best time is right now. The changing financial landscape that COVID-19 caused is difficult to fully understand, even for a trained professional. Yet, a financial planner can lessen your burden because of their ability to create flexibility during times of uncertainty. Business Insider has a great tool to begin your search. Having a plan will help lower your financial stress.
The Importance of Self-Care
The financial planner is done, what now? Take a second and focus on you. During times of anxiety it’s even more important that we stay mentally, physically and emotionally healthy. Premier Health has a good foundational checklist if you need assistance. Goal-setting is also something useful when we have more free time on our hands. They don’t have to be difficult; simple goals like “make dinner every night this week,” and “go outside for an hour a day,” are both amazing ways to stay grounded mentally and financially.
Options for Senior Citizens
The one thing senior citizens shouldn’t have to worry about during the COVID-19 pandemic is their financial situation. The deadly virus has caused them more than enough anxiety. Seniors have a multitude of ways to reduce spending, both big and small, that will not greatly affect their lives but will lessen their financial stress.
The biggest change seniors can make in their finances has to do with shopping for new healthcare. It is important to know what it is you are paying for and if there are options that better suit your needs. Even medications can be changed, from name brand to generic, and in doing so hundreds of dollars can be saved.
Some less drastic options for seniors to save money include reducing transportation costs. This can be done by finding local options that give discounts to senior citizens. There are many different avenues to find senior discounts of all shapes and sizes. If all of that has been followed, one last option is to shop at thrift stores when applicable. While not always the best option for major purchases, thrift stores have many cheaper options on items that shouldn’t require a name brand.
Financial Relief During COVID-19
There are numerous ways to lower your financial burden, and thus your financial stress, during these difficult times. Yet, not everyone can fully accomplish their goals without some assistance. And that’s okay. The Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (CARES) was passed on March 27, 2020, precisely for that reason. To take full advantage of what the CARES Act means for you, start by signing up for Unemployment Insurance at your state website.
If you are finding it difficult to pay your rent or mortgage, there are multiple programs in place that will give you forbearance. The National Foundation for Credit Counseling (NFCC) has all the information you need to get started.
There are also local, state and national programs that can help with food assistance, utilities, and job opportunities. Plus, there are many charities working hard everyday with the singular goal to help those in need.
Even the best financial planner in the world could not have predicted the economic roller-coaster that COVID-19 has caused in 2020. What they can do now, however, is help you create a flexible schedule that stops the financial stress that is ubiquitous due to the pandemic. While there will certainly be more ups and downs along the way, having a plan in place will give you confidence in your finances as you move forward.