Thursday, October 23, 2008


Top Ten Things NOT To Do In A Poor Economy

Times are rough. Let’s face it. Stocks are selling and the market is shakier than a bunch of epileptics in a canoe. With this guide of what NOT to do, you should be alright. Enjoy:

10: Panic. That’s right, don’t panic. Don’t get all superman and jump off a building or out a window in hopes that instant death is the cure. There’s always a way out, there’s always hope, and if you’re like me, you have a family that needs you. Even in rough times, 2 low paying salaries are still better than 1, so stick around and don’t panic.

9: Sell. Yep, you heard it here… keep your money invested. The cycle of the economy is actually built to your advantage. While it’s not fun to watch your resources dwindle down to 30%, then 40%, then 50% of what it once was, it will come back. The one thing I can guarantee you is that if you sell, it won’t come back. Ever. You need to ride it out to rebound.

8: Save. Stop hording your cash. Don’t leave it under a mattress; don’t leave it in a savings account making 19 cents a month. Now is the time to throw it all in a nice mutual fund or some safe stocks that are on the low. Need some tips? Transportation, healthcare, beverage companies, etc… These will all be around for ages. The world needs all of them to survive.

7: Budget Like A Maniac. OK – this is touchy. Budgets are a necessity, in any lifestyle. Good economy or bad economy. But what I mean is, don’t take away every little ounce of happiness you have to try and make it all work. You need a $6.00 latte everyday? Fine. I’m not going to tell you to quit, but maybe get a smaller size everyday. Maybe just get one every other day. But don’t depress yourself by starving your cravings dry.

6: Ignore Coupons. People PLEASE!!!! If there was a dollar bill on the street, would you walk by it? We get coupons every Sunday. Clip them, use them. I average $40-$50 savings per week using coupons and finding where I can maximize their potential (ie- double or triple coupon locations). Clip them don’t be ashamed. If you see someone staring at you as you shuffle through them in the store, give them a look roll your eyes, mumble “I cant believe someone wouldn’t use coupons,” and give a little sarcastic laugh with a head nod.

5: Wait for the holidays. The crunch comes in no time flat. Right now, it’s October. I have my list already, I have some people already shopped for and crossed off. Before you know it, December is here. Get the list done in little increments rather than all at once, and you rack up a $1,000 Best Buy or Target bill!

4: Live in the un-green house. We’ve all heard of going green, right? Well, I don’t really think of the environment too much, but I think of saving the green, as in cash. I shut of all lights when not in use. I power down power strips, I shut registers to vents in rooms not in use, I cut corners everywhere in my house to save a nickel and dime here and there. Do it… IT WORKS!

3: Keep your credit stagnant. If you have credit card bills, seek out an easier way. See if you can move that balance to a new card/bank with 0% interest. Anything you can do to NOT pay interest, or pay lower interest is your best bet right now. Move your credit around. Talk to your banks for lower rates. See if re-financing your mortgage right now for LESS TIME, and LOWER PAYMENTS is possible… YES, it really might be. A 30 year mortgage taken out 3 or 4 years ago at 6.5 % will have MUCH higher payments than a new 15 year mortgage at 5.75% - research it and switch it.

2: Hold off that big purchase. Thinking about a new car or major re-construction on the home? DO IT! Why wait until prices, costs, and interest rates rise back up? Do it now and get the best deal you can. Car dealerships are practically throwing cars at you. Construction costs are at an all time low. Just do it, and pay all you can. Remember this though… construction on a home ADDS equity. Buying a new car lessens it. Nothing depreciates faster than a shiny new car… but if you need or want one badly enough, go for it now, strike while the iron is hot.

1: And I Mean this… it really is the number one thing to NOT DO!!!! Never, under almost 100% circumstances, switch your job. No matter what is thrown your way. If you have company loyalty of more than one year, KEEP IT! Statistics have shown that when a company lays people off, the first considerations go to NEW employees. Loyalty actually does count for something in this day and age. Now, nothing is guaranteed, but why roll the dice? Employment change during poor economic times should only be done under drastic circumstances (including being laid off). If you have less than one year history with a company, change if a good opportunity is thrown your way. But otherwise, stick it out until better times. Your company might reward you for it. The new one, might say “well, we lasted long without this person, they’ve only been here a month, lets get rid of them before we take out any other people with bigger severance packages and unemployment bills.”

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