Bank Notes

If you’ve been laid off, put on unpaid leave or had your hours or salary reduced, you're likely experiencing a significant amount of financial stress.

So, how do you prioritize and manage your expenses over the next month and beyond? Here are three steps you can take to approach this challenge:

Build a new budget

Start by making a new budget. Look at how much money you'll have coming in every month and compare it against how much your bills are likely to amount to. What are your essential costs vs. your non-essential costs? Cut back on whatever expenses you can. For example, cancel or pause subscriptions you are willing to temporarily go without, like a gym membership or magazine subscription.

How can you pare down your budget? Check out our guide to building an essential-only budget.

Explore how to supplement your income

What sort of income relief is available to you to get through this period? Explore governmental websites (federal and provincial/territorial) to see what relief programs, like Employment Insurance or the Canada Emergency Response Benefit, might apply to you.

This is also a time to really look at your expenses and analyze what you need to pay right away and what you might want to defer. Check out our guide on how to prioritize payments when money is tight.

Do you have a side gig? Now might be a good time to expand your freelance work to help you pick up some extra income.   

Talk it through

Remember that it's okay to be stressed by your work situation changing and to feel overwhelmed by the situation. Make sure that you are having an open conversation with your loved ones about your new budget and how you will get through this transitional period

Reach out to your financial advisor to help you make a financial plan that is right for you today and into the future.

 

Legal Disclaimer: This article is provided for information purposes only. It is not to be relied upon as financial, tax or investment advice or guarantees about the future, nor should it be considered a recommendation to buy or sell. Information contained in this article, including information relating to interest rates, market conditions, tax rules, and other investment factors are subject to change without notice and The Bank of Nova Scotia is not responsible to update this information. All third party sources are believed to be accurate and reliable as of the date of publication and The Bank of Nova Scotia does not guarantee its accuracy or reliability. Readers should consult their own professional advisor for specific financial, investment and/or tax advice tailored to their needs to ensure that individual circumstances are considered properly and action is taken based on the latest available information.