As I write, it looks like many parts of the world are about to enter a second (or even third) wave of the Corona Virus crisis.
In the continued absence of a vaccine, governments are mandating ways to keep the population safe.
Unfortunately, many of their proposed methods have great impact on business, and the economy.
Even if your business is not directly affected, your customers and prospects could be.
If they are not making as much money, they will have less to spend with you.
When the economy shrinks, it will eventually impact everyone.
About 70% of small businesses are concerned about financial hardships due to prolonged closures and 58% worry about having to permanently close, according to a U.S. Chamber of Commerce Small Business Coronavirus Impact Poll.
Soon you could find your bills are piling up.
You could have debts you can’t pay.
How much you are impacted by tough economic times is largely down to how well you prepare.
Keep reading this article to learn some great financial tips which will serve you now and well into the future.
Make a List of Your Monthly Expenses
Sit down and make a list of everything that you are spending your money on.
See if you can cut some things out.
For instance, do you really need that daily coffee at the coffeehouse?
Finding where you can cut expenses, strengthens your overall financial picture.
Minimise Your Use of Credit
Right now, many businesses request payment by card instead of cash.
Contactless payment does help with infection control.
But make sure you pay with a debit card instead of a credit card.
Do this especially when purchases are small.
The balance on a credit card will attract interest.
If you are someone who does not pay credit card bills in full every month, that small purchase on credit will eventually cost you more and more.
A debit card will allow you to purchase from vendors who may not take credit cards for small amounts.
If you don’t have one yet, ask your bank to issue you a debit card.
Spend Less Than you Earn
This may sound obvious.
It is good advice regardless of the state of the economy.
But far too many people try to live beyond their means.
They like to give themselves the illusion of wealth.
They finance a better lifestyle through credit and loans.
Spending more than you make will have a negative impact on your financial history.
Try to live within your means, and you may find that you come out ahead with what you save in the process.
Look for Discounts
As a business owner you will understand the value of offering a discount.
And there is every reason you should take advantage of a discount when one is offered to you.
So keep your eye open for offers on the things you buy.
Clip those coupons from the papers and take them with you when shopping.
My mobile phone company is always offering me discounts on behalf of their partner stores and businesses.
Don’t be Afraid to Ask
If you are a member of any groups such as the police, military or a car assistance club, ask if the store provides discounts.
Many shops offer discounts of 10% or even more, but not all advertise that fact.
Prepare to show your card as proof of membership or give your number if you are shopping online.
Pay Your Debts On Time
Unless you have no other choice, do not accept grace periods from your credit card company.
It seems like a great idea, but the problem is you get used to not paying your card.
That is the real reason such grace periods exist.
When you get used to not paying off the balance on your card, the credit card company makes money on the interest.
Compound interest is a sure way to financial problems.
As the interest charges rise you find you can never get ahead.
Paying all your bills on time must become a habit.
Act Now to Survive and Thrive
There is no substitute for knowledge when you are having financial problems.
Once you start putting this advice to work in your own life, you will be able to survive the financial downturn for longer.
And when COVID is just a memory, the good practices you put in place now will help you to build wealth in the future.