As promised last week, I wanted to take this week to share with everyone some things hubby and I have learned from facing changes in our finances.
Before I get started, I want to say that a lot of what you will have to do with your finances depends on where you are now. If you are behind on bills already with tons of debt, your plan will look different from someone else who has 3-6 months of income saved with no debt. I tried to put together a few tips that could apply to everyone.
1. Have a budget meeting ASAP:
If you are married, you want to talk to your spouse as soon as you know something is up with your job. This is the time to start planning for a storm. Now if you are hearing rumors vs. confirmations, don’t become paranoid, but you don’t want to be in denial either. You may not even have to implement a plan but it is good to start talking about it. Maybe you were going to take an expensive trip or buy a car (with cash of course). You might want to put these things on hold until you know exactly what is happening at work…or not it is your choice.
2. Place all debt repayment and large scale spending on hold:
If it is a fact that changes at your job are on the horizon, you want to start saving money. You want to avoid any new debt and the only way to do that is to save, save ,save to have cash on hand. If nothing happens, you just press play on your debt snowball and pay all the money you were saving to your debt. Dave Ramsey refers to this as storm cloud mode. I can’t think of a better name for it!
3. Check your reoccurring expenses to see if you are getting the best rates:
This is the easiest place to save some money because it is not effecting your lifestyle. Check insurance policies, cell phone plans, gym memberships, Netflix usage (do you get the DVDs but never watch them or is that just me). Make changes and cuts where appropriate.
4. Anticipate any major expenses:
If you have some notice on a job change, look ahead to see if you have any large scale expenses that you cannot wait on. Maybe you really need tires this winter and it can’t wait. We prefer to take care of the these things while checks are still coming in. If you really need to see a doctor, do it while you still have insurance and income to absorb any cost from the visit.
5. Start looking into what you could cut out of your budget:
You don’t have to do this yet, but I would at least start looking at your budget and what you could do without. The eating out, fancy cable packages and other luxuries might have to be placed on pause. If you work out a plan now, it is easy to just switch over if and when the time comes.
6. Pray and stay positive:
This is the most important thing. Financial stress is so taxing. It can ruin your confidence and put a strain on your marriage. Keep from blaming yourself or your spouse. I can truly say (from experience) that every closed door has lead to new opportunities! I can’t wait to see what God has in store next. Make sure that you are staying positive and prayed up!
I hope this helps! Do you have any tried and true money saving, storm mode tips that I missed? Let me know in the comments below!