What is the first thing a homeowner should do during Covid-19
These days many people are unsure of how to spend their money with the stock market going haywire, a new crisis seeming to appear every single day, unemployment rates rising, and overall panic being seen in the media. One of the first things I could advise you to do is to stop focusing so much on the news. There’s a lot going on right now, and focusing and trying to fixate on every new problem in the world will only stress you out. That is one of my most important tips during this time. My next tips and steps will be broken down in this blog post.
Check your finances. Start small, and just check out how everything is going. Some questions you should be able to answer include: How much do you have in savings? Have you been laid off? Are you receiving unemployment benefits if you have been laid off? (I understand it’s pretty difficult to get any kind of unemployment benefits right now and even the stimulus check is lagging behind.) How much do you spend a month? Do you have any debt? Are there any bill payments/ debt payments that you can safely differ at the moment? Once you have your basic financial standing up to date, continue on to the next step.
Now that you have figured out what amount of money you’re working with, you can start working with real numbers instead of estimated guesses and an overloading amount of panic.
If you have a Job
Keep working, try to get some exercise, go outside every once in a while and keep yourself sane. Also update your resume when possible just in case, and save the money that you can save, or pay off debt you can pay off easily at this moment. Maybe consider refinancing for certain loans, as interest rates are very low right now. Keep up your mortgage payments and don’t ask for any kind of forbearance. A lot of people who don’t even need forbearance right now are asking for it without reading or doing any kind of research on how a forbearance could help/harm them.
If you just got Laid off
Take a breath, a lot of people are going through this. Call your lender, it might be pretty difficult to reach them at this time, but call. Ask them what your options are, what can be done, and don’t automatically ask for mortgage forbearance unless completely necessary. Attempt to file for unemployment, although it is pretty difficult to get at this time. Check up on your stimulus check payment at https://www.irs.gov/coronavirus/get-my-payment. Understand that a lot of people are going through this at once, so more and more aid is slowly becoming available. Check your interest rates, if they are variable, they might be changing right now and making some of your payments easier. Evaluate your situation and understand if you are doing well or really really struggling. If you have some amounts of savings, pay off your monthly mortgage payments, don’t delay them without thinking through the entire situation. Some banks are asking for lump sum payment plans after this so delaying your mortgage payments unless absolutely necessary could end up doing more harm in future.
Talk. To. Your. Lenders. Just do it, I know it can be very frustrating to reach them at a time of crisis, but it’s a necessity at this point, and read every single thing before you sign off of any kind of aid that they give you. Real Estate Experts know what’s going in the industry right now and they can help you with so much free advice. The phone number is on the website, so it’s easy to call, and we’re not backed up to the max. We will answer your call, and we will not put you on a long wait time.
Consult with a real estate professional. Keep track of the news and everything that’s going on. The banks are being sneaky right now with the aid that they are offering and the government is not punishing them for their lack of care towards people who really need help right now. A real estate expert can provide you with the care, financial help, and free advice that you so desperately need. Knowing real estate well can be quite tough and requires a lot of experience in order to keep up with all the trends, and know how to do things the right way to avoid getting the homeowner hurt.
Homeowners insurance is something you will still have to pay through all of this, but rates could be lowered during this time. As of right now, a lot of companies are handling this situation very differently.