Financial advice you need right now!
We all thought that 2020 was going to be the best year yet, and then came COVID-19. While there have been talks about the economy opening up soon, there have also been talks about a second wave that could hit us anytime. We have all learnt from the current situation, on adapting our finances and making smarter decisions. Here are the top things COVID-19 can teach you when it comes to budgeting!
Ration: We've all talked enough about first of all budgeting and spending on what is "essential" only. The most rational thing to do now is to ration. Buy as much as you need, even in terms of consumables and not more than you need. Most households have the tendency to hoard, spending more in the present thinking it's cheaper to spend now and consume later.
Cash Flow Planning: In a crisis, your plan has the tendency to blow up, while we should not anticipate living this way forever, more than “budgeting”, cash flow planning is most essential, watching your regular sources of income and tracking those regular “needed” expenditures.
Keep Your Savings Safe: Spending/ budgeting on occasions in the form of parties/ events can now come down significantly. This is great news not only for your wealth but also for your health as you distance yourself from unnecessary interaction with your bank account.
The economy opening up should not translate to your wallet opening up more than required. You should still exercise discretion on what and where you spend your money.
We don't need to be penny pinchers nor splurgers, there is always a balance that you can find.
The Covid-19 situation has impacted the personal finances of most middle-income households. With nuclear families living closer to their workplaces, there are costs that you simply cannot avoid. These could be in the form of rent, school fees and internet/power bills. Now we all know that families lose control of their finances simply because changing lifestyles overnight is not possible. But making sure that you are prudent about future spending is a habit you can develop. The tendency to pay as and when things are needed, whether through EMIs or trigger happy spending v/s having a sense of control exhibited can only be achieved by planning cash-flows.
In households whose income was dependent on the business for instance, you might have seen a slump in business and/or a complete halt in cash in-flows. This being a health crisis means having the required amount of emergency funds (we all know how expensive healthcare can be, especially as you grow older).
At this time, sound health insurance can prove to be useful. If you haven’t already, getting one for your immediate family members can prove to be a wise investment over an immediate expense.
Looking on the brighter side, this might be a time for you to give your finances a break, connect with possible alternative savings options, clear debt and hope for a better future, which we are sure, is on its way!