Updated March 25, 2020
What impact will this have on the economy?
COVID-19 has already had a major impact on the world economy, causing stock markets to nosedive more steeply than at any point since the 2008 financial crisis. This is an unprecedented event on a global scale, but it’s important to remember that you’re not alone. Governments are working around the clock to find ways to provide economic support, and businesses are making rapid adjustments to policies and penalties.
What can I do to manage my finances through COVID-19?
- Now is a good time to make a short-term budget and prepare for an unstable situation for the coming months.
- Building up emergency savings is always important. Anyone with low or no savings should try and cut back spending today in order to put funds aside, just in case their job and income are affected.
- While interest rates are falling, it’s not a good time to increase borrowing. Central banks are clearly worried about the threat of this epidemic growing, which means it’s time to save, not borrow.
- In particular, expensive debt such as credit card borrowing, should be avoided. However, if options are limited, look for cards with no-fee or low-interest. Find options for you here.
- Enroll in direct deposit with your employer, for those who haven’t already. That way, pay can be deposited directly into a bank account, rather than via paper cheque.
- Similarly, be sure to enroll in online banking in order to access finances and pay bills without having to visit a bank branch.
- Some people may want to explore freelance work that can be done remotely. Check out two great sources: Task Rabbit and RYOB that may help you find remote work, from graphic design to filling in surveys.
Will my job be affected?
- Employees who can do their jobs from home may be in a more fortunate position than those who can’t. However, school and childcare closures are creating challenges, limiting parent’s ability to work remotely.
- Sadly layoffs are already happening. Small businesses and service-based industries are impacted the most as shops, restaurants and retail stores close their doors.
- Layoffs in manufacturing could grow as global supply chains struggle. Experts are warning about a COVID-19-driven recession, which could also lead to layoffs in manufacturing and beyond.
What financial support is available?
- The Canadian government has announced their economic response plan, read more here.
- Many companies are waiving late-fees or freezing monthly bill payments all together, including mortgages. Check your provider's websites, contact your bank or get in touch with your landlord and see what support or forgiveness they are offering.
- Tax filing deadlines have been moved. Check the new dates here. However, if you think you might get a tax refund (the majority of Canadians do), you might want to file your taxes sooner so you can get the refund as soon as possible. Get More Tips
The Bottom Line
Our team is working on ways to support our members through this time. Rest assured that Borrowell is here for you to check and monitor your credit anytime, as well as get advice, tips and tools to help you manage your finances. Our team is working from home, but that hasn’t impacted our ability to serve you.
It’s going to take time and effort to get through this challenge. But we’re going to get through it, together. In the meantime, stay healthy and safe.