All around the world people have been affected by COVID-19 in so many different ways. For many, the unexpected shock of redundancy or reduced salaries has had a huge knock-on effect when it comes to personal finances.
Whether you have been hit hard in the pocket by COVID-19, or whether you’ve been fortunate and been relatively unscathed, finding ways of saving money is always welcome and wise, so this post is for you too!
Taking small steps can make a big difference
“Look after the pennies, and the pounds will take care of themselves.”
— Old Mr Lowndes (Secretary of the Treasury)
First, make a list of all your priority bills, e.g. mortgage / rent, car payments, bank loans, credit cards, etc.
- Find out if you may be eligible for a mortgage holiday. If you rent your property, check out the following link: COVID-19 and renting: guidance for landlords, tenants and local authorities – GOV.UK (www.gov.uk).
- Struggling with car payments, check out: If you’re struggling with car finance payments because of coronavirus – Money Advice Service.
- Or if you have two cars, perhaps you could consider selling one to reduce bills, or trade in both cars for a less expensive vehicle (check your lender’s agreements first to see where you stand with such).
- Bank loans – speak to your bank and explain your position. They will advice you concerning the best options currently available to you. Do the same re: any outstanding credit cards.
- You may be eligible to apply to have your debts written off (voluntary bankruptcy). Be aware that such has its future repercussions, so make sure you know the full ins and outs of such before choosing this option. See: StepChange Debt Charity | Dial 03301225235 For Expert Debt Advice (thestepchange.com)
- If bills are increasing month on month, you could apply to have them consolidated into one smaller monthly payment. See Applying for a Debt Management Plan (DMP).
Food and clothing
Next, aim to reduce your food budget considerably each month, e.g.