Saturday, November 01, 2008

Advice on Job Loss or a cut in hours

Some things to consider in this troubled market...

-Conserve cash. I know easy to write but tough to do. If you're paying more than the required payment on your mortgage, auto or student loans, pay only the required amount and conserve your cash for your living expenses.
-Create a new budget. Budget your expenses and figure out which items can be eliminated or at least reduced.
-Assess your financial situation. Review your assets to determine the best sources to tap for your cash needs. Set up a plan for which assets you'll use and in what order if your unemployment is lengthy. Make sure you understand the potential tax consequences of each.
- Consider purchasing medical insurance outside of COBRA. You may find a better deal.
-Obtain a home equity line of credit. If you think you might lose your job, and you will absolutely have to borrow money to see you through, it is easier to get this type of loan while you’re still employed.
-Discuss severance benefits with your employer. Ask about severance pay, outplacement services and medical insurance continuation options.
-Here is the tough one- Try to Make sure you have six to twelve months of living expenses. The rule of thumb used to be three – six, but it’s a different world now.
-SO IMPERATIVE-I think most will work with you but YOU HAVE TO CONTACT THEM----Contact your mortgage lender as well as your credit card companies to explain your current situation and ask them to work with you. If you continue to run up your credit you could end up filing for a bankruptcy and that will stay on your records for a long time, making obtaining future loans that much more expensive.
-Remember that cash is king. It’s going to be harder and more expensive to get credit.