After months quarantine at home, everything becomes slower. Spending priorities only range from 4 important things, food, hygiene kits, medicine and supplements, transportation. Everything revolves around survival during quarantine at home.Some folks will be getting out of quarantine faster than others, but most states have already reopened or plan to start lifting some of those restrictions put in place to stop the spread of COVID-19 in the U.S. Now what should you do after this quarantine period is over. You need to know that in order to re-arrange your financial life after ‘sleeping’ for weeks.
Here we adapt from Dave Ramsey’s blog, American radio show host, author and businessman, how to restructure your finances after quarantine ends.
1. Reassess your current situation.
When this crisis began, you might have gone into “survival mode” and focused on taking care of the Four Walls—that’s food, utilities, shelter, and transportation—and nothing else. You canceled your Netflix account, told the credit card companies to wait their turn, and called off that vacation you had on the books for months. It was tough, but you did what you had to do! And now as the quarantine winds down, it’s time to take a step back and look at your current situation with a fresh pair of eyes. That way, you can make decisions that make sense for your situation!
Are you still out of work, or feel like your income isn’t very stable? Then you might need to stick with the Four Walls for a little longer—at least until you can get your income situation sorted out.
But if you still have your job (or got a new one) and feel like you’re in a secure situation, it might be time to start attacking your financial goals again—whether that’s getting out of debt or saving for a down payment on a house.
2. Revisit your monthly budget.
Working from your living room with nowhere else to go, you probably went weeks without having to fill up on gas. On the flip side, you probably spent more on toilet paper and hand sanitizer in the last two months than you have in your entire life!
Now as things slowly shift back to “normal,” whatever that looks like, you might need to start adjusting your budget back to where it was pre-coronavirus as you start driving more and getting back into the swing of things.
But maybe this quarantine has helped you realize that some things shouldn’t go back to normal. Maybe all those banana bread recipes you baked during the quarantine have inspired you to avoid eating out as much as you did before. The point is that you have a chance to pick and choose what comes back into your monthly budget and what stays out—don’t waste it!
3. Get back on the Baby Steps.
No matter where you were on the Baby Steps when things shut down, you probably needed some time to pause as you navigated through life in the land of COVID-19. If you’ve been chomping at the bit to get back to attacking your debt snowball with gazelle intensity or saving for retirement again, now might be the time to get on it—especially if you still have your job and feel like your income is stable, better you to try 7 baby steps again. You can read it fully on Dave Ramsey website.
4. Make a plan for action items you put off.
Maybe you had plans to put new tires on your car, take your kids to the dentist or install a new HVAC system earlier this year. But then the pandemic happened and, all of a sudden, those things on your to-do list couldn’t get crossed off just yet. But as businesses start opening up again with social distancing measures in place, you might be thinking about pulling the trigger on some of those action items you’ve been putting off. Just make sure you have them accounted for in the post-quarantine budget.
5. Keep a lot of cash on hand (just in case).
If there’s one thing the pandemic has taught us, it’s that we need to be prepared for whatever life throws our way. Today, it’s a global pandemic. Tomorrow, it might be an invasion of murder hornets (look it up).
6. Check in with your financial advisor.
With emotions running high on social media and even within your own circle of family and friends, it can be hard not to get swept up in a tidal wave of fear and panic. And when you’re freaked out, that’s when you’re most likely to make some terrible financial mistakes that could set you back big time—like cashing out your 401(k) or racking up credit card debt. That’s why it’s so important to have a financial advisor you can turn to for guidance, someone who can help you take a step back and look at the big picture.