When to file
Unemployed and unsure about when to file for benefits? The sooner you file, the sooner insurance kicks in which can ease immediate financial stress.
Learn how to get your money situation in order on the Mint blog
How to file
Visit the Department of Labor site¹ to understand more about the federal unemployment insurance options available. There are also helpful links to find your state’s instructions.
If you’re self-employed, see if you qualify for an added benefit under the Cares Act. It could allow you to receive an extra $600 per week in benefits for up to 39 weeks. Benefits may be retroactive dating back to February 2, 2020, depending on your last day of work.
Money management tips from mint
During uncertain times, it is important to remain calm and centered and make the best decisions with the best information possible. It’s wise to express any emotions you may have with a trusted family member, friend, or licensed therapist and use your network of professionals to help guide you.
Visit Mint Resource Guide
Have a plan
A solid budget and financial plan is helpful to be present and clear with what is happening, especially in times like these. Creating a plan through Mint or with a financial planner, will help you so that you won’t need to react as much to unforeseen circumstances.
Review your plan
If you have a financial planner, speak with him/her about a plan. You should review your plan during times like this to ensure you are doing the right things with your money. If you don’t have a financial planner, look for free services available or check out www.cfpboard.net to find a planner who fits your needs.
Review your budget and cut out any unnecessary expenses. The Mint App can help you do a deep dive into all your monthly expenses to see if there is anything that you can cut. Perhaps memberships or subscriptions you no longer use? Any freed up cash can be spent towards essentials or another financial goal.
Mint for iOS
Mint for Android
Consider refinancing debt to get lower interest rates. The Federal Reserve has lowered interest rates and also increased the amount of short-term loans it offers banks to keep cash flowing smoothly. This could affect interest rates on credit cards or other personal debts but make sure to talk to a professional as it does not always make sense to refinance debt nor does this mean that mortgage rates will necessarily go down. Do your research and make sure you understand your options carefully.
Learn more on the Mint blog
Think about the big picture
First, get a big-picture look at your financial situation. What are your basic living expenses, how much debt do you have, and will you be getting any financial assistance in the form of unemployment or disability checks?
Then, go through all your expenses and see what you can cut back on or get rid of entirely - starting with memberships or subscriptions that you don’t need.
Visit the Mint blog to learn more
Check for eviction moratoriums. If there’s one where you live and you’re unable to cover your rent because of the coronavirus, then you could be eligible to stay in your home for a period of time while a moratorium is in place. Moratoriums are being rolled out at the city, county, or state level in some localities. There are different rules and terms depending on where you live, so you’ll have to check.
For instance in the state of New York, eviction moratoriums are in place until at least June 20th. That doesn’t mean you’re completely off the hook, though. You’ll still need to pay your landlord what’s owed.
Reach out to your loan servicer to ask about your options. If you’re a homeowner and have federally backed mortgage payments, foreclosures have been suspended for 180 days for individuals who are experiencing financial hardship related to COVID-19 and are currently occupying their home.
More good news: If your home was in the process of a foreclosure, this may be halted in some cases.
Along the same lines, you can reach out to your gas and power companies to see if they’re waiving late fees or being more forgiving before shutting off your utilities. Several utilities around the country are temporarily halting shut-off.
Start by doing your research to determine if refinancing is right for your situation. If interest rates are lower or your credit has improved, it might be worth shopping for a loan with better terms.
You can easily check rates online with Motorefi¹ without your credit being affected and without needing to provide a social security number. Just remember that if you didn’t get the best rates on your original auto loan, that doesn’t mean you have to stay locked-in. You can typically refinance a car loan at any time during the life of the loan.
Learn more about auto loan refinancing during COVID-19 on the Mint blog
Look for relief
If you’ve lost a job or aren’t able to work due to circumstances prompted by the coronavirus, help is out there. Check the Families First Coronavirus Act (FFCRA) website¹ or disaster unemployment benefits website¹ to understand the relief available for you - whether an hourly worker, small business owner, freelancer, or artist.
Build your plan
If your business financials feel volatile, you’re not alone.
Jot down worst-case scenarios and potential business struggles. Then finalize a plan for dealing with those problems before they arise. This is your guide to moving forward with speed and confidence.
Visit Small Business Help during COVID-19
Plan for supply
Build a supply continuity plan. This plan focuses on getting all the goods and resources you need from alternative sources, should a vendor cease production.
Set a communications plan
Your communications strategy should be for employees and customers. Decide what you need to tell investors, employees, and contractors, and create clear points of contact within your organization so messaging goes through proper channels.
Explore virtual and e-commerce options. If your business relies on face-to-face contact or in-store purchasing, now’s the time to think outside the box. Consider virtual meeting rooms for consults and services and online retail spaces for goods.
Take a deep dive into your current financial situation, engage a financial professional if you can, see where you stand, and plan accordingly. Often, things aren't as bad as they seem.
COVID-19 and Finances: Ultimate Money Tip and Resource Guide
It’s more important than ever to prioritize your mental health. Finding the help you need is critical to preserving your emotional, physical, and financial well being.
These sites and apps offer some of their services for free:
Shine site¹: Care topics for Coronavirus anxiety.
Headspace app¹, Calm app¹: Free guided meditation programs. Also offers in-app purchases.
Adjusting to working remotely
Working remotely can leave employees feeling disconnected from teams and co-workers. But teamwork is important for productivity.
Be transparent with your teammates and practice patience. Remember that you’re all in this together and as you work through your new reality.
Visit Small Business Help from QuickBooks during COVID-19
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