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Managing your finances during a time of uncertainty

We have all been impacted by the sudden and rapid progression of Covid-19. You may be dealing with unexpected expenses as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic, causing you financial strain. You are not alone. The uncertainties of Covid-19 may cause fear and anxiety, influencing the decisions you make about your finances. During this time, you may be wondering how will I get my finances back on track? Or how will I be able to pay my bills if I become unemployed? The questions are endless and the uncertainties are worrisome.

While we cannot do anything about the things that are beyond our control, we can shift our focus on the things that are within our control. There are many resources available to help you if you are having difficulties with your finances during this time. It is important now more than ever, that you are making decisions with a clear mind.

Here are some things that you can do to help you gain control of your finances and get you on track with your bills:

  1. Write down all of your expenses. Include due dates for each bill. This will keep you on track with your payments and help you identify the weeks when you have the most bills due.
  2. Identify your needs vs. your wants. What are the things that are essential? What are the things that you can live without? This will help you identify opportunities to increase your savings.
  3. Create a plan of how you will pay your bills on time. Example, using a calendar as a reminder for upcoming payments. If you are at risk of falling behind on your bills contact your creditors, they may be able to give you a number of options to help you. For example, if you are in good standing they may waive your late fees. Don’t wait until you have fallen behind to call (this could have a negative impact on your credit score).
  4. Revisit your goals. At the end of the week or month, check your progress and make modifications as needed.
  5. Remember to breathe! You’ve got this.

 

What is one “want” you will cut back on this month?

If you need help getting started, visit http://edis.ifas.ufl.edu/topic_series_building_a_spending_plan  or contact Cyndi Longley: 561-233-1742;  clongley@ifas.ufl.edu.

 

 

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