The COVID-19 pandemic has many people worried and frustrated about their financial futures. The pandemic is causing health and economic concerns for the entire nation. As the government forces some businesses to stay closed more and more people are out of work. The unemployment rate has skyrocketed and people without a large amount of savings are finding it difficult to pay their bills.
If you are in this situation you may be looking for tips and strategies that you can use to help manage your finances during the COVID-19 pandemic. While the situation you are in may not be the best there are ways to improve your situation. Here are the top ways that you can manage your finances and use Cobalt Advisors’ advice to guide you through these difficult times.
#1) Get Advice From A Professional
If you are in danger of having to declare bankruptcy because you cannot afford your bills the first thing you should do is seek advice from a professional. The professionals at Cobalt Advisors can help you create and manage a financial plan to help you overcome the difficult situation you are in. The professionals understand financial difficulties and are able to help manage your money and find solutions to help you overcome difficult times.
#2) Create A Strict Budget
Creating a strict, but reasonable budget is one of the main things you should do if you are looking to take control of your finances during the COVID-19 pandemic. Try to cut down on spending as much as possible. Since there are no entertainment places open you should be able to save everything that you would usually spend on entertainment. Try staying home and reading a book or watching a movie, rather than going out to the movies and dinner.
Your budget should account for all your bills that you need to pay. You should leave a little bit of room for emergency funds, but the primary part of your budget should consist of bills and necessary items, like food and gas. You should avoid buying any unnecessary items, like clothing or new cars during this unpredictable time.
#3) Learn What The Government Can Do For You
One of the main things that you should look into is the assistance that the government is providing for you during this unforeseen time. During this crisis, the local and national government is providing many people with financial support. They are giving stimulus checks, increasing the amount of unemployment you can collect, and widening the number of people who can collect unemployment.
For example, many states are offering Pandemic Unemployment Assistance that allows a greater number of people to collect unemployment benefits. Under this assistance program many people, like the self-employed can collect unemployment. This is provided to people who are having a difficult time finding and securing work due to the pandemic.
#4) Housing Assistance
If you are struggling to pay your rent or mortgage you can use the mortgage and housing assistance to help you make payments. While not everyone will qualify for this assistance you can check with your lender to see what your options are. If your mortgage is backed by the federal government you may be eligible to receive forbearance and mortgage relief during the crisis. There is also protection for renters that helps ensure you cannot be kicked out of your home during this time. Struggling to pay bills is a concern for many Americans today but this program is designed to help reduce the stress a little.
#5) Managing Your Student Loans
If you have federal student loans you are not obligated to pay your loans back until September 30, 2020. This allows people who cannot make payments to delay their payments until the pandemic is less widespread. Many former students have large student loan payments that they would never be able to make during this COVID-19 crisis. If you are in this situation you can stop stressing about making these student loan payments and relax knowing that you have a few months to get on your feet.
#6) Understand Your Rights For Medical Treatments
If you or a loved one is hospitalized because of COVID-19 you may be in danger of needing to pay back very large bills. The average hospital stay due to COVID-19 can be up to 20,000 dollars or more. If you have insurance but have a high deductible you may be able to work with your insurance company to have them pay the majority of expenses related to COVID testing and treatment.
#7) Avoid Scams
During this pandemic, there are a large number of scam artists all across the world and the nation. They are calling and emailing millions of people looking to get their personal information. They may be posing as the government or as companies looking to provide help and relief for families in need. If you get suspicious phone calls you should never give out your personal information. It is difficult to detect a scam when it happens so always be cautious. If you are unsure you should hang up, do some research, and call the number back if necessary. Protect yourself and your family and do not give out any personal information over the phone.
The COVID-19 pandemic has many people worried about their futures and what the economy will bring next. If you are struggling to make bill payments and afford the necessities for life there are options available to you. The government, both national and local, understand the situation that the majority of Americans are in so they are creating and expanding many federal programs that can help provide financial assistance to everyday citizens. Whether you are out of work completely or stuffing to find a consistent job there are options available for you and your family. You should seek the help of a financial professional, look into the government options available, create a strict budget, and avoid scams. These tips can help you reduce the stress you have about finances.
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