I am not going to kid you, it’s getting bad out there. Yesterday we had a jobs report come back to say that there 533,000 jobs lost in the month of November. That my friends is nothing to sneeze at. Now is it a time to be smart and like the title says buckle down and get back to basics. You have to know where your financial position is at this moment and to either improve it in a hurry or defend it all cost. We may be at the bottom of this crisis but no one knows how long the bottom can last. There have been predictions that it could be up to 18 months, others are saying that it could be less than a year. Smart money is to prepare for the long haul because we are seeing numbers that are unusual even for a recession. Numbers that we haven’t seen in 30 years. When that starts to happen now is not the time for the new luxury vehicles.
I have put together a couple of defensive steps that you might want to take a look at. These steps are to make sure that you are doing the best you can to stay out of trouble during this dry spell. If you are in a good place now, make sure that you do not get comfortable. I’m pretty sure that a majority of those 533,000 people in October thought that they were comfortable as well. So this is just a short little list of simple no brainers that sometimes people just need to be reminded of before it is too late.
- Check your Credit Reports – This is very important. We are in the middle of a credit crisis. Even though it may not be an ideal situation, we are still a credit base society. Albeit that is what got us in trouble in the first place, even still that part of our society has not changed yet. So you want to make sure that you are on good standings with your credit scores and you want to make sure that you keep it that way. Do not use your credit card unless you are a hundred 100% sure that you can pay it back. If there is any doubt in your mind that you will have the money when that bill comes due then put it away. You need a good credit score to function in this society and so if you have bad credit start to work on it, NOW!!! Bad credit hurts ten times worse in the middle of a credit crisis. You will not be able to put bottle water on credit. If an emergency comes up you will be stuck on your own cash reserves and anyone that will let you borrow from them. Basically to put all this in a shorter manner, get your credit situation in good standing. There are a couple of places to heck your credit report.
- Become Friendly with your bank – or if you don’t have a bank account, get one now. You are hearing a lot in the news that banks are going out of business. Yes, there are bank closing that are happening across the nation but guess what? Not one account holder has lost money since this has been happening. Investors are losing money in these banks but not account holders. Your money is FDIC insured up to a new limit now of $250,000. The old limit use to be 100,00. There is still no safer place to store your money than in a bank. A bank is the only place where your money will be insured by the government who even though it doesn’t seem like it these days are still a triple A lender. You can not get any safer than that. Another good reason that you will want to stay friendly with your local bank, is that when the banks start lending again and they see how careful you were during the time of crisis, they will consider for loan applications even if your credit is not the best around. Your actions with the local bank mean a lot, make them count.
- No Grown Up Toys – New car, no. New boat, no. New jewelry, no. New HDTV 60″ for the bedroom, Hello No. Now is the time for being practical above all else. This is another no brainer statement but a lot of people need reinforcements to hold true. You can purchase a new car, only if you truly need it. And if you do there is no reason to go to max of what the bank will allow you to borrow. Stay reasonable and well within the means. If your old television breaks or is fuzzy by all means get a new one. Again keep it practical. There is no reason for the 60″ in the bedroom that makes your feel like your bedroom is your own personal IMAX theater.
These rules are definite no brainers. I will be the first to admit that. But when you see something on the screen or printed out right in front of you it is easier to get a grip on what it truly means. It’ not enough to only know the rules but you must practice these rules in the upcoming days. We as a country are in a bad way right now. We must make sure that each and every one of us hold our head above water no matter the adversity that faces us. If we that then we will be able to help the person on the side of us and give them a hand as well.