By Mekialaya White

DENVER (CBS4) – If you’re struggling with finances during the COVID19 pandemic, you’re not alone. With surges in unemployment, times are tough for thousands of Coloradans.

“What I will say, though, is that we will get through it,” said Ande Frazier. Frazier, who is based in New York City, has worked in the financial industry for more than 25 years and owns myWorth, which helps people find financial wellness.

If you’re trying to make ends meet right now, try to focus on the basics. For instance, if you can’t pay rent, Frazier says ask for some leeway.

“Reach out to your providers, your landlord, or your bank that you have your mortgage with, or even the people that are providing your utilities. So many companies, thank goodness, are providing relief for many people. They’re letting people defer payments, being able to work something out because we’re all in this together. Don’t just assume it’s going to be the worst,” she told CBS4’s Mekialaya White.

She also suggests being proactive and taking advantage of community resources.

“There are a lot of people out there who are donating money to help with expenses like food, shelter, and utilities.”

Frazier also says, even if you’re not in crisis, you may be in a second category: pre-crisis. She had some suggestions for how to manage that situation, too.

“Maybe you still have a job, maybe you still have savings, money that’s accessible to you, so you may not be feeling the impact financially like you’re feeling in terms of having to stay at home and shelter in place and all of that.”

Her recommendation is to not spend any money unnecessarily.

“Going through and looking at what you’re spending money on, on a regular basis. Are there prescriptions you can cut? Is there a pause you can do for your gym membership?  There are ways to cut back so that you have a little extra money right now so if you do get into crisis and we see a lagging effect economically which we may see after things come back to normal, making sure you have access to money.”

She added, “I even recommend not continuing on an aggressive path of debt repayment right now. Just paying the minimums and taking the extra money and keeping it right now so you have some liquidity. You can go back and pay off the debt. With so much up in the air, even though you may still have your job, we don’t know what it’s going to be like when we get back to work.”

Frazier expects we’ll see effects of this even after the healthcare crisis is under control; economically, this may linger on through at least the end of the year.

“I think everyone just needs to buckle their seat belts because it’s going to be bumpy for a while, but I do think there’s an opportunity for us to get through it if we stick together and support each other and give everybody grace during this period.”

To learn more about finance management, head to https://andefrazier.com/.

Mekialaya White

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