Lost your Job- how do you survive?
Many, many people have lost or fear loosing their jobs because of Covid. Additionally lots of people have seen their salaries reduced, their hours cut or have had to take jobs out of desperation just to put food on the table. For lots of the population these are desperate times and desperate times need support. Hopefully some of our ideas, be they practical or for your general well being, will help you. Here we go:
Explore the benefits system
Most people don’t like to go down this route but at the end of the day everyone is entitled to support. This could be Job Seekers Allowance or Universal Credit or some other support. Go online and explore how you apply, but apply you must, it is your right. A lot of people think it’s a complicated process but it really isn’t.
Look at getting mortgage support
If you have a mortgage and will have trouble paying you should contact your Lender. They will want to help you. The type of support they should suggest is switching temporarily to interest only repayments or lengthening the term of your mortgage. Both of these options will reduce your monthly payments.
Prepare a budget
We know this is obvious but it is imperative that you write down your income and your outgoings. Look at what expenses you can get rid of. Cancel your gym membership, TV subscriptions, unnecessary insurance cover and any other not needed costs that you are paying monthly. Work out what fixed costs you have ie: mortgage, rent, utility bills, telephone bills, rates and food. Dump the rest.
If you cannot afford your rent and housing bills consider moving into a cheaper place. The most economical move if you are a young person would be to move in with a family member or a friend. Sharing a property is always going to be cheaper. Alternatively in the short term until you are on your feet look to rent a room in a shared house rather than have your own flat. If you do this look for all inclusive rental contracts so you can budget effectively and avoid extra bill payments.
Rent out a room
If you have a spare bedroom why not rent it out. It’s just sat there holding all your old junk but it could earn you money. £400 per month rent would not be unreasonable. We know it is invasive having someone in your ‘home’ but think short term not long term. Be sure though to put a contract in place with any tenant and take up references. There are Companies who will do this for you – such as spareroom.co.uk
Start a little business
Get out there and sell you yourself. Anyone can do cleaning, gardening, cleaning windows etc. Print yourself some flyers, you’ll need about 500 to pick up 1 or 2 jobs, but you need to invest in order to accumulate. Walk the streets and put the flyers thorough letter boxes or hand them out at at a busy station. Be cautious though particularly if you are going into someone’s house, there are some odd bods out there.
Sell your stuff
We all have lots of ‘stuff’ we never use, be it clothes, kitchen equipment, garden equipment, children’s toys, jewellery etc. Make your unwanted or unused goods earn you money. Open an eBay account and get flogging. What is one person’s junk is another person’s treasure. We know someone who was offered £60 for an old car, she put in eBay and got £800. So we know this is a great way to make money.
Sell you car
If you have a car, calculate how much it costs you monthly to run it. Make sure you include fuel, breakdown cover, insurance and maintenance costs. Do you really need the car? It could be cheaper for you to use public transport? It maybe that you live in a remote location and a car is essential for you to get about. In this instance you may need to consider ‘downsizing’. Get a smaller or cheaper car. Release some of the money you have invested in your vehicle.
Shop at cheaper supermarkets or markets
There are some really good deals to be had in the cheaper supermarket chains, outdoor markets or farmer markets. Shop seasonally. Plan your meals so you are only buying what you need. Batch cook as often as possible as this often makes foods go further. Look at economic recipes, pasta is always good ‘go to’ with either a meat or vegetable sauce of some kind.
Entertain at home
Stop going out it costs a fortune. Get together with your friends or family and arrange that you alternate hosting evenings at home where the host provides the food (economically of course) and the entertainment (perhaps a film you taped or a DVD classic you’ve had for years) Your guests can bring the booze. Another idea is get together with two others. One supplies the starter, one the main course and one the desert. This works well.
Be selective if you eat out
Sometimes you just need to get out and if this is the case make sure you check out the online deals available or any vouchers which are being given out. There is always something available. If necessary have two courses rather than three and have a drink before you go or when you get home. What you buy booze in a supermarket is always cheaper than that in a restaurant.
Appreciate the simple pleasures
You don’t have to spend money to have fun. A walk in the country, a trot around your local park, having a glass of wine whilst watching a film, reading a book or exercising can also be fun. As is visiting family or friends, visiting a museum or walking around an old church. You can amuse yourself by spending little or no money, you just have to be inventive and think outside the box.
Fall out of love with having ‘stuff’
Many complication and stresses in our lives come from a love of ‘stuff’. In order to chase this materialistic lifestyle you have to have money. If you don’t have any money you can’t feed your ‘stuff habit’. For instance you have a great car but hanker for a better one Why? Learn to be satisfied at the moment with what you have. When you start earning again you will be able to add to your ‘stuff’ pile.
Look for a job
It’s all very well cutting back but you don’t want to do this for the rest of your life. You want a lovely home, you want to go on holiday, you want to treat yourself and your friends and loved ones. To do this you need to get a job. Even in the most terrible times there are still jobs to be had. You just have to work harder to find them and above all you must remain positive at all times.
We know what you are going through. All of us in the office here have been in your situation at some time or another. What is essential is that you remain positive and that you are proactive. Cut back on your expenditure but don’t not enjoy your life. Most importantly believe that this terrible time will not last forever. Good times are around the corner.