Take quick financial action after a job loss
There are few worse feelings than being fired or laid off from a job, and when individuals lose their positions, panic over how to meet their day-to-day needs may quickly set in. But surviving a job loss can be made easier if adults act quickly to assess their finances and develop a budget and debt management plan that will tide them over until they find a new job. The first step job seekers should take is examining their finances thoroughly to see where they’re at, and what they may need to change. Individuals should make a list of their expenses, including housing, bills, insurance, food and other monthly costs. These expenses should be weighed against the income they plan to use to hold themselves over, such as severance pay, emergency savings and regular savings. Even adults who are in a decent financial position should still cut back on unnecessary spending and start living leaner in case it takes them more time to find a new position than they hope. For example, downsizing cable packages, canceling magazine subscriptions and switching to more affordable insurance packages can help individuals save money during this rough patch. In addition, some services, such as landlines, can be canceled altogether if consumers have cellphones. During this period, it’s important that adults stay current on their bills as well, which can seem difficult when they’re trying to limit their spending. If money is really tight, individuals may have to only make the minimum payment on their credit card debt. Even though individuals may incur more interest over time, this method will allow adults to maintain a positive payment history and keep their credit score intact. When it comes to mortgages and auto loans, individuals should consider seeking financial advice through a credit counseling service, according to Forbes.com. Credit counselors do not solely focus on credit cards, but may also provide housing advice, budgeting tactics and other debt management strategies of which struggling consumers were unaware. Lastly, adults should seek out other sources of income while they are searching for a position. Freelancing and individual contract work may give them the income to lesser their financial burden or devote more income toward savings or bills. In addition, this may be a good time to finally get rid of unwanted items that can be sold or auctioned off.