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Financial Choices in a Tough Economy

Tough Economy

Our country's economy is struggling to get back on its feet in the midst of the Coronavirus pandemic.

Millions of Americans are facing financial hardship because of it. If you find yourself in a tough financial situation, there are a few things you can do to help you and your family get back on the right track. Here are some great tips that you can use when the economy gets tough.

Create a Budget

One of the best things you can do when you're in a tight financial situation is to create a budget for your household. It can help you visualize how much money you have available to you and where money needs to go, reducing waste. Start by calculating how much money is coming into your household monthly and how much needs to be spent monthly on things like rent or mortgage, bills, food and other necessities. Also, calculate how much you spend monthly on things that aren't necessities (i.e. dining out, entertainment, shopping for clothing, etc.).

Once you have a clear number of how much money is coming in versus what is going out, you can also budget in savings and spending money. If need be, cut out unnecessary spending. Stick to your budget as closely as you can. Then, you'll quickly get a better handle on poor spending habits. Use a spreadsheet, app, or another tool to find the best way to track your budget.

The Household Budget You Need to Fund Your Dreams

Work out a Revised Payment for Debts

If you have debts like a mortgage or car loan, your lender wants their money back no matter what you're going through. They understand that you may be experiencing financial hardships, but that won't stop them from trying to get their money. Talk to the lender and see if there is any way you can revise your payment plan to make it more manageable. They may be able to lower your monthly payments. This can help you ensure the lender that you plan on paying back the money you owe while taking some of the burdens off of your shoulders.

Cut out Unused Services

Take a serious look at all of your entertainment and streaming services. Many people may have multiple services like Hulu, Netflix, or Disney+ that they pay for monthly, and may not even use them that often. While it's nice to have a lot of entertainment options, it can also be helpful to cut out one or two of the ones you use the least from month to month. When you're only paying a few dollars for each of these services, it can be tough to realize how quickly they add up to hundreds of dollars a year. Start by cutting out the service you use the least and wait a month or two to see if you really miss it. Signing back up for these services is often quick and easy, so if you need to, you can start using them again when you find yourself in a more stable financial condition.

Cook at Home

A couple cooking from home to save money as one of their better financial choices.After a stressful day of working and juggling household responsibilities, it can be tough to find the time to cook for you and your family. But the price of takeout or delivery can often be double what you're paying to make something similar at home. Try dedicating a few hours on your day off to meal prep, and find some quick and easy recipes that your family will love. When you find some delicious things that you love to make, cooking can actually become an activity that you enjoy and can use to unwind. And home-cooked meals are often healthier than their restaurant counterparts, making this a great tip for both your wallet and your waistline.

Hold off on Larger Purchases

Sometimes you can't avoid making larger purchases in the midst of a tough economic situation. If your washer or fridge breaks, or you need some essential repairs on your home or car, you might find yourself needing to dip into your savings. However, if you can hold off on making a larger purchase, like electronic items, cars, appliances, etc., wait until you're on solid financial footing. Before making a large purchase, think about if it's something you really need and really can afford. Give yourself time to think the purchase over instead of making an impulsive decision. If a few weeks pass and you still find that you'd like to purchase the item and are financially able to do so, you can go ahead and buy the item.

Financial Choices in a Tough Economy

If you find yourself in a tough financial situation, there are a few things you can do to help you and your family get back on the right track.

Negotiate With Your Landlord or Utility Providers

A large chunk of your monthly income likely goes to rent and utilities, and these are things that you can't exactly skip paying. Remember that even though bills don't stop, there are humans behind these bills who don't want you to be unable to pay. Talk to your landlord or utility provider to see if you can work out a repayment plan to take some financial strain off of you, at least temporarily. If you've been good about payments in the past, you'll likely be able to find some help here.

Defer Student Loans

Millions of adults in America are struggling to pay off their student loans. In some circumstances, you may be able to defer your loan payments temporarily. Of course, you should only do this if it's absolutely necessary, as you'll still need to pay back all the money you owe, but this can be a lifesaver when you're caught in a bind. Talk to your lender to see if you can defer payments for the coming months.

Make Better Financial Choices in a Tough Economy

Managing your own finances can be difficult in the midst of an economic downturn, but you can still make smart choices to prepare for your future. If you've been financially affected by the recent pandemic, there are resources available for you. For updated info on PrimeWay's operations and response to the Coronavirus, visit our website, or contact us to learn more.

Author Bio

Keith Huckabay

Take 3 parts Internet Junkie, 4 parts Broadway Fanatic, 1 part News Addict, 2 parts Comedy Enthusiast, and mix it with some ice in a blender and you get Keith. He is highly energetic and brings just a little bit of quirky to all he does. When he’s not marketing his pants off for PrimeWay, Keith likes to hold court with his friends over a nice dinner or traveling new places.

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