SAN ANTONIO — The pandemic has caused economic pain for many people. It’s unclear how soon a deal will get done to provide coronavirus relief aid to Americans.
In the latest coronavirus stimulus talks, a bipartisan group of lawmakers is pushing for a $908 billion covid relief package. The stimulus plan would extend key relief programs like federal unemployment benefits but would not include a second stimulus check for Americans.
According to the proposal, it would also deliver liability protection from coronavirus-related lawsuits. The programs providing critical aid to Americans will expire by December 31 if a new deal is not reached.
As the future of another stimulus package remains unclear, here are five simple ways to shrink your anxiety over finances and take action to grow your bank account.
Change your spending habits
“I guarantee there's money that's leaking out in different areas. It could be that cup of coffee every morning on the way to work. It could be too many subscriptions to streaming services. Whatever you can cut back on, to get that savings account to be built up,” advised Karl Eggerss, senior wealth advisor and partner of Covenant.
Start an accessible fund
“Oftentimes I meet people that have a good 401(k). They have their savings in there. They have a lot of money in equity in their home and they’re really one accident away or a job loss away from having some significant cash flow issues,” shared Eggerss. “Their 401(k) isn’t really accessible until they retire and their home isn’t accessible until they sell it or move.”
Put your money on autopilot
“Work backwards. Break it up into months or paychecks and put it on autopilot. Your bank can set it up to move so many dollars from your checking account to your savings account,” suggested Eggerss.
“In the financial planning industry, the general rule of thumb is to put away about 3-6 months of your expenses into a liquid savings account, money market,” said Eggerss. “For example, let's say you're a one-income household and maybe you have a job that's still not steady because it's in a service industry in 2020 for example. That's a situation where you could lose your job you may want 6-12 months of your expenses in your rainy-day fund.”
Pay down your debt
“Think about your debt in relation to your rainy day fund. I oftentimes see people paying a high amount of credit card interest but they're sitting in a money market or a savings account with a good amount of cash in a rainy day fund. They really should be taking some of that money and paying down their debt,” advised Eggerss.