There is nothing more panic-inducing than losing your job when you didn’t expect it to happen. Losing your job, you will have less income coming in almost instantly – it all depends on how you lost your job. If you’ve been fired, you will get paid up to the day you had worked until, and no more. If you’ve been made redundant, the chances are that you have a redundancy package which can cushion the blow a little. When you’ve got a mortgage to pay, bills about to come out and children to support, though, it doesn’t really matter why you’ve lost your job, only that you have, and you have to figure out what to do – quickly.
There is a checklist that you need to keep hold of in a safe place to draw from if you lose your job, so that you can be prepared for anything. Below, you’ll find that very checklist.
Mortgage/Rent. One of the most important bills that you have to continue paying is your mortgage or your rent. You need to keep a roof over your head no matter what you do, and this doesn’t change whether you are working or not. Ideally, you will have a payment protection insurance with your mortgage which can keep you covered while you look for new work. The important thing to do is to call the bank where your mortgage is held and let them know the situation; as they may have a repayment holiday or can advise you what to do.
Insurance. Whether you are working or not you need to keep up with your GoMedigap insurance and your regular payments to house and life insurance. This is so that you don’t end up hitting Murphy’s Law and something else going wrong when you’re already down.
Debts. One of the worst things to realise is that you won’t be able to pay debts down while you’re not working. You need to keep hold of your income for food and essentials, so this involves you contacting any creditors and explaining your situation. Reduce all debt payments right down to a dollar or two a month and keep that token payment going until you are working again. Contrary to popular belief, your creditors would rather hear from you than get no payment at all.
Budget. You need to review what budget you have while you’re not working. If there are any government benefits to be had, you need to look into these quite quickly so that you can claim as early as possible. You need a clear idea of what you have and what you don’t have, and you can move money around to suit your situation.
Don’t be afraid of losing your job; it happens and it’s a part of life. It’s how you react to it that’ll be a true reflection on your character, not the fact you are out of work. Keep moving forward, because goodness knows that life will, whether you want it to or not!