No one has money to spare and let’s be honest, after a pandemic and lockdown, most people are on a very tight budget.
Here are six tips to help you get by while on a tight budget.
Apply for Government Help
In regular times, there are various government programs in place to help people with a low income. With the pandemic, many programs were put in place to help, like the Canada Emergency Response Benefit (CERB). If your income dropped or stopped altogether, find out what support the government is offering, and which ones you’re eligible to receive.
Cut on Extras
When stuck at home, everybody tends to splurge on various things like junk food, renting movies online and so on. If your budget is getting tight, you might consider cutting these. Cutting all nonessentials helps you save, whether they’re small of big things. It can be anything from your morning coffee stop to the gym membership you’re not using anymore.
Save on Food
During and after a pandemic, it’s harder to shop around for deals because you try to keep your trips to the grocery store to a strict minimum. When you find good deals at your regular grocery store, buy a few extras when it’s non-perishables or items that you can freeze. Look online for recipes using what you already have at home, and for recipes using inexpensive ingredients. If it’s the right time of the year, make a garden. Everything you can grow you save on your groceries.
Sell What You Don’t Use
Go through your home to see if there’s anything you don’t use anymore that could be sold online. People are still buying used goods online, and it’s easy to exchange the items while keeping your distance.
Find Odd Jobs
Look for odd jobs to do. Take into consideration that it must be outside or online. Outside jobs can be mowing the lawn or shovelling the snow, depending on the time of year. If you have a talent, you can give online classes. It can be painting or guitar lessons, tutoring or teaching another language. Just make sure that the money you make from your odd jobs doesn’t penalize you if you’re receiving financial help from the government.
Get a Small Loan
If you know that your situation is temporary and you just need a cash advance to help you get through this month, a small loan might be a workable solution. Make certain you do business with a trusted lender, and that you can afford to repay the loan.
Lockdowns are likely to happen again in the future. With that in mind, plan. Once things get better financially, put some money in an emergency fund on each payday. Buy a few extra things every time you do the groceries. That way, you won’t be caught unawares, and you’ll be prepared if ever this situation happens again.