It is undoubtedly a tough time for many people right now. Some individuals are into their 6th month out-of-work and without a paycheck. The truth is that the vast majority of individuals do not usually budget; but COVID-19 has demanded that we all do just that.
At a time like this, Savings may be the furthest thing away from your mind. While it is natural to be concerned we must be careful not to give in to all the fear in the media. Instead, we are encouraging our members to focus that energy on making sure that your own financial standing is where it needs to be.
No matter how scared you might feel right now—take some time to look inside yourself and see how you can turn this crisis into an opportunity. Look for other income opportunities; put your creativity and innovation into high gear; now may be the time to start that business idea that you kept putting on the back burner.
If you are still employed and had developed a habit of saving; keep saving! If not or if you stopped because of the pandemic, get back to saving. And for those who never started or think you don’t have enough to do so, even it if is to set aside $5 or $10 dollars every month – Start Now! Keep the habit of saving alive during this down time and you will find it easier to save when things begin to pick up.
In the words of Dave Ramsey, personal money-management expert:
Having an emergency fund is never a bad idea. Think of it this way: If a recession were to happen, you could rest easy knowing you have your emergency fund in place. Your emergency fund is the buffer you need between you and life all of the time, not just when there’s talk of a recession. And right now is the time to make sure your dollars stretch even further. If you’ve been kind of, sort of budgeting all along, buckle down and give every single dollar a job to do by making a zero-based budget.
Finally, once things start to rebound, remember to be as frugal as you are right now and put the extra money to work towards debt repayment or rebuilding your emergency savings.