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How to protect yourself financially during the COVID-19 pandemic

25/03/2020
16:00 PM

Across Australia (and the globe), governments are working hard to combat the domino effect from the spread of coronavirus COVID-19.

Communities throughout the country are currently dealing with an increase in confirmed cases and the crucial actions needed to stop the spread. Headlines like "Flatten the curve" are topping our news outlets, and shopping centres from one corner of the nation to the other have been stripped bare.

This is a tough time for every one of us. Potentially, there hasn't been such a dramatic global effect on the economy since the Global Financial Crisis in 2007-2008. A recession looms over us if the symptoms and transmission of the disease aren't overcome, and quickly.

But it’s not all doom and gloom. There are ways you can protect yourself during this extremely volatile time. While you may feel the unease of your financial situation or the challenges of working from home in self-isolation, using the following tips will help you keep on your feet.

And remember, you are never alone. There’s always someone out there to help you mitigate the issues at hand – including our team at Dream Catchers.

 

Who these tips are for

  •  If you’re experiencing financial hardship towards paying your bills or other financial agreements (e.g. mortgage or loan).
  • You have lost your job or income stream.
  • You’re feeling the pressure of uncertainty.

 

Remember to reach out to support networks

These communities aren’t just your friends and family – they’re also the financial planners, advisors, accountants, health practitioner or other support. And during this pandemic, you should reach out to them as much as possible. Do not feel hesitant about asking for help – we’re all in the same boat.

When a crisis like this is looming, it’s important to get in touch with the respective providers, if you have difficulty making your loan repayments or paying your bills. This allows you to avoid damaging your credit file for future lending.

Right now, lenders are extremely understanding of the current circumstances and have made it clear they will help customers where they can. Additionally, there are many banks deferring repayments for up to six months, bringing a sense of relief to those needing to buckle down.

While the world is going through a huge change, creditors and lenders are doing their part to help ease the pressure, so it’s time to use that to your advantage.

 

Contact your lenders straight away

If you're experiencing difficulties paying off your loans, credit cards or other financial obligations, you must contact your lenders straight away.

Let them know about your situation – everyone is aware of the pressure placed on the economy right now, so there may be leniencies available to you around your position. Keeping behind on your payments can have a significant effect on your ability to remain afloat down the track, so it's always worth tackling them now.

In some cases, your bank might be able to offer you waivers on specific fees, overdraft payments or costs around paying late. All it takes is a phone call, so don't hesitate to speak to your financial institution if you're feeling the pressure.

 

Contact your state government

Over the coming months, state governments will be rolling out support and stimulus packages to help those feeling the effects of the declining economy.

We recommend keeping an eye on upcoming announcements to see where you may be eligible for funding.

 

Spend wisely

It goes without saying that you'll most likely need to make sacrifices or smart decisions on where your money goes while COVID-19 is in full swing.

Allocate yourself a specific budget for groceries (keeping fluctuations in demand and supply pricing), other necessities and "wants". Stick to it throughout your week and reassess before the new one rolls in. Understand how you went in the past seven days and whether you need to make adjustments according to the income you're currently able to access.

 

Reach out and ask for help

Knowing whether you are able to access these kinds of benefits will create a world of difference during this challenging period.

To help combat the challenges our clients are facing, we’re offering virtual consultations, so you can even access these services from the comfort of your own home.

 

Dream Catchers Lending will be open throughout self-quarantine and lockdown. You can book an online appointment with our team to ensure you're keeping on top of your financial situation.

 

Give us a call now on 0413 868 333 to lock in your virtual consultation.

 

 

 Photo by Anshu A on Unsplash