The world may never return to the “normal” state we once knew, but it is starting to open again. As the pandemic winds down, men and women are returning to work in greater numbers every day. For some, that comes after several months of working from home or not working at all. The change will be hard, especially from a financial perspective. So you’ll need to get your house in order.
Thankfully, there are free resources available to help you. One of the better ones is the Credello’s debt guide. It will help you create a debt payoff plan to implement after you start making money again or are just ready to revisit the payments you put on pause. This is important, especially if you piled up some new debt during the pandemic. Prior to tackling that debt, you’ll need to take the following steps to get your finances in order.
1. Check Your Health Insurance Policy
Many workers who simply went remote during the pandemic were able to retain their company health insurance. If that’s not your situation, this is a good time to evaluate your health insurance needs. Are you covered if you get sick? You’re about to enter into society again. As we all learned painfully last year, there’s a health risk to doing that.
2. Modify Your Budget for New Expenses
Many companies are choosing to leave their employees at home, but you may have the opportunity to go back to work. Venturing out into the world will create new expenses for you, such as gas, take-out food, coffee, and parking fees. Modify your budget accordingly to account for these expenses. You don’t want to run out of cash before you get your first paycheck.
3. Create or Update Your Will
It was Mark Twain who said, “The only two certainties in life are death and taxes.” Now that you’re going back to work, you might want to look at your last will and testament. If you don’t have one, create one. One painful lesson that the pandemic taught us is that life is fleeting. Make sure your loved ones are taken care of if anything happens to you.
4. Plan to Replenish Your Emergency Fund
Some people were blessed to collect enhanced unemployment checks and various forms of government assistance during the pandemic. Others dug deep into their emergency fund to make ends meet. Now that you’re going back to work, hopefully with an increased income, develop a strategy for replenishing your emergency fund.
5. Protect Yourself from Covid-19
The worst of the pandemic might be over, but Covid-19 still lingers. Going back to work means putting yourself at risk of exposure. Follow all suggested safety guidelines, wash your hands frequently, wear a mask if required, and take advantage of available vaccines if you’re comfortable. Protect yourself and your family and your health and your finances will be better off.
Welcome to the New Normal
Don’t expect the office to look the same as it did two years ago. The Covid-19 pandemic of 2020 caused us all to be a bit more conscious of our surroundings, careful about human contact, and more open to working from home when that option is available. Enjoy stepping back into the public, but be prepared for these changes.