GuidesInvestingSavings

How to Manage a Personal Financial Crisis

In this period of uncertainty and a possible financial crisis, life might look like a jargon scribble. So, I understand why you may be in panic mode. After all, you are human and panic is the way many of us respond to a crisis. However, panic comes with a number of repercussions. Unsurprisingly,  panic is usually engineered by some headlines designed for one thing and one thing only to create fear.

Am I trying to downplay the danger of the Coronavirus here? No way! But if you’ve noticed, all we’ve gotten is a panic craze with little about how to survive a possible financial crisis. Rather, we have been led to make rash money decisions like panic buying. Such actions lead to a pressure that can motivate disorder. Some even go as far as borrowing for this or breaking investment plans meant for important future goals.

In this article, I’ll share tips on:

  1. The ideal solution
  2. Steps to creating a crisis budget
  3. How to build an emergency fund
  4. How to stock up on food during a crisis

The ideal solution for a financial crisis

In an ideal world, everyone should actually have an emergency fund to help in times like this. For example, if you can afford to invest NGN10,000, and you don’t have an emergency fund, you should push about NGN1,000 to an emergency fund. Unsurprisingly, the world isn’t ideal and many still believe their savings/investments should dub as emergency funds.

How to create a financial crisis budget

The first step is to have a crisis budget. Ideally, this should exist before a financial crisis, and visited when a crisis happens. However, we have accepted that we are not in an ideal situation. That said:

  1. Imagine a scenario where things slow down and your money inflow goes down by about 50%.
  2. Not so great, right? But things can go south, so design your budget with that assumption in mind.
  3. List out the essentials and cut down again.

For example, food is generally an essential item but some meals are just leisure meals. Take those off the list! Then, go shopping with that budget.

How to build your emergency fund

To rephrase the words of Nick Holeman:

“If you don’t have three to six months’ worth of expenses saved in an emergency fund, temporarily reduce contributions to locked plans. Start putting more in an accessible emergency fund”

With Cowrywise, you can start the buildup of an emergency fund using our low-risk mutual funds or the Cowrywise Stash. You can start by putting in 10% of any money that comes your way, or you can choose to take out 25% of any amount you want to deposit into a locked plan. Then go on to place it in the fund. Do you want to learn more about emergency funds? Check here

Get affordable and long-lasting food

Consider meal types that can last for at least 14 days in storage. You can start by seeking out items that are in season. Kitchenbutterfly has a seasonal guide here. Also, you might want to consider having beans and grains.

Beans can be paired up with so many meals. How about some sauce for your rice and yam? Check out this black pepper sauce from 9jafoodie. The sauce can last for weeks without refrigeration. Do you want that? Check out her video here.

As we round this section up, don’t forget your vitamins. A good source of these are fruits, but they have short life spans. To preserve them you can use an oven to dry them. Dried fruits can be paired with many meal options, and they’ll help your cereals last longer.

Also, they can be eaten alone. They’ll not just help with vitamins boost, but also fibre boost. However, don’t consume much at once as they are concentrated in nature. Want to learn more on drying fruits? Check out this simple video. Want more food tips? Check out this twitter thread.

 How is the Cowrywise team this period?

We are hale and hearty. To ensure everyone is safe, we have been working remotely since the 17th of March, 2020. Also, we constantly share tips with one another. That way, we can continue to help grow your funds without worries of having any team member getting infected.

Finally, this isn’t the time to break your investment plans. There’s a beautiful life ahead of us that will require those funds. So, here’s a promise: we’ll keep your funds secure as always. Remember, if you ever get worried, I wrote an article about our security structure. Read it here.

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