Tips and Tricks- Stimulating the Economy

Many of us will be getting (or may have already received) a stimulus check deposited into our account this week. With about 78% of the American population living paycheck to paycheck, even if you qualify for the full amount given by the government, it still may not go very far.

What is this money for?
The Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (CARES) is the government’s answer to balancing the hardship that the Coronavirus has placed on all of us. If you are unemployed and/or missing a paycheck for any reason, here are four important things to spend this money on if you are struggling:

  1. Food
  2. Utilities
  3. Housing
  4. Transportation

Most lenders are working within their capabilities to help lower rates, defer payments, or provide refinancing options. Being patient is key. The National Credit Union Foundation offers these tips to put into practice:

1. Prioritize: Focus on the bills that keep a roof over your head, the lights on, and food on your table.

2. Talk with the Credit Union or your other lenders: Many, including ACU, are offering loan modifications (such as deferred payments) to help with your monthly payments.

3. Save some of it: If you put even a small percentage of it away, it can help with the bills that will be coming next month.

4. Do not keep all your cash at home: ACU is a safe and secure place to keep your funds.

5. Protect yourself from scams: Scammers are everywhere even when everyone is in the same boat. Watch for suspicious activity including emails, texts, and calls.

6. Pay your taxes: Although the deadline has been extended to July 15th, you will still need to pay your taxes at this time. If you have not saved for that, this stimulus can help you take care of that bill.

It is easy to feel overwhelmed when life seems so uncertain. While we are all wondering what the next few months might hold for us financially, taking a hard look at your monthly budget and prioritizing this stimulus may help ease your burden.

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