We recently discussed how you can budget and highlighted some of the best saving solutions. But when the time comes for to buckle down and track our spending, we can often panic and forget basic budgeting techniques. A financial emergency can happen to anyone and hit when you least expect it. Whether it’s a sudden loss of your job due to the current economic climate, a family emergency or an unexpected illness. Many Canadians are not prepared for a crisis, with 72% having no savings in their emergency fund, according to Loans Canada. Whether you are prepared or not, now is the time to try cut costs and prepare for your future.
We are currently in the middle of a global pandemic due to the spread of COVID-19. The Canadian Government have implemented a variety of rules in order to keep the public safe from the virus, such as closing schools and limiting public gatherings. To date, Canada has tested 50,000 people for the virus and advised Canadians to social distance and self-isolate when possible. You may be worried about the impact of the current COVID-19 pandemic on your finances and we’re here to help.
COVID-19 is a health crisis, but it will have immediate and lasting impacts on your financial health. But don’t worry, we understand it’s stressful. If you reduce costs, track your spending and follow a budget, your finances should stay on track and help you power through this rough patch.
Let’s discuss some ways you can cut costs, save money and prepare for your future in these tough times.
Make your own cleaning products!
I’m sure you’ve all noticed how the price of everyday cleaning products have inflated. Prices have nearly doubled due to the high-demand and low stock available. This causes us stress, as we’re left searching through shelfs for the last pack of Lysol wipes. Once we get to cash register, our bank accounts are also left shocked.
Baking soda, distilled white vinegar, lemon, hydrogen peroxide, castile soap, borax and essentials oils are all must-have ingredients to make your own home cleaning products according to BHG.com. These ingredients are usually hidden at the back of your kitchen cabinet. They provide an inexpensive cleaning solution and a form of entertainment for us while we’re at home.
Gas is cheap. Fill up now!
According to CNN, the coronavirus pandemic has caused global travel to collapse, eating into the world’s once-insatiable thirst for oil. Currently, oil prices are the lowest they’ve been in 17 years, with a price per barrel now down to only 20USD. But you’re probably wondering, how can these prices benefit us? Well, now is the time to fill up your car gas tank, and any jerry cans you have lying around to save money in the long run, especially while the prices are low.
Order your groceries online!
Many supermarkets across Canada have an option to order your groceries online through their website and get your shopping delivered to your door. Not only does this help encourage social distancing and self-isolation during this pandemic, but it means you won’t have to spend the money on public transit or gas. It also will help save you time, especially since schools are closed, meaning you won’t have to put your young kids at risk by bringing them to the supermarket too.
Take time to review your monthly expenses
Now is the time to review your monthly payments. You may have automatic payments for transit, gym, yoga classes or other activities that you can no longer use due to the pandemic. This is the perfect opportunity to pause your payments for the moment and save the money you would have been spending.
Plan and file your tax return!
We recently discussed how your tax return can help you improve your credit score and it’s important to note that if you are applicable for a refund, it can help you in many ways in times of uncertainty.
When times are tough and you’re unsure of your future financial situation, prioritizing your credit health can benefit you in the future when searching for a personal loan, a mortgage, a car loan or any other financial product. It’s important to note, the closing date for submission has been extended to June 1st due to the pandemic, so you have lots of time to file your taxes and plan for your future.
Earn extra income when in isolation.
If you’re currently out of work and in isolation, it’s hard to keep up with your monthly bill payments and rent. If you’ve been laid off or aren’t allowed to work because your employer has closed, why not consider applying for a work from home job like Amazon or earning extra income by participating in surveys online with Swag bucks. This way, you can keep yourself busy during the day while also earning money.