Losing your job can be devastating. Not only is it a blow to your confidence, but you must also be extremely careful with how you spend your money. If you’re in debt, you must also factor in your monthly debt payments. Learning how to live frugally can make a huge difference in how quickly you need to find yourself a new job. These 13 tips will help you save money while you’re unemployed.
1. Visit Your Local Food Bank
The food bank is meant for situations like these. Don’t be too prideful to accept the help that is available to you. It can make a huge difference if you’re having trouble affording basic needs like food.
2. Stick to Necessities Only
Review your spending and cut off everything that isn’t a necessity—no more streaming services or going out to eat until you have extra money to afford ‘wants’ and ‘needs.’
Take advantage of free resources and entertainment. Places like your local library have so much more to offer than just books. Visit your local library and ask the librarian about their free programs.
4. Don’t Waste Leftovers
Save any meal you don’t finish for a later date, even if it’s only a few bites. Pair it with another dish as a side. Throwing out perfectly good food is like throwing money away.
5. Check Buy-Nothing Groups
Join local Facebook swap or buy-nothing groups. Many people are willing to help with food or give away items they no longer need to those in need. In some cases, you’re even able to request specific items you’re looking for and people can oblige.
6. Contact Local Churches
Many churches have outreach programs for the community for those who need assistance. Even if you don’t personally belong to the congregation, call the church office and inquire about their programs.
7. Donate Plasma
In some cases, you can donate plasma for money. It is a reasonably easy way to make money if you can do so. There is likley a plasma donation center in your area, and most will allow you to donate a few times per month, often earning you a few hundred bucks.
Many online survey companies will pay you small amounts for your time. It isn’t much money, but it is a way to earn extra money or free gift cards in your spare time. Or try out some apps where you can get paid to play games on your phone – yes, that’s actually a thing.
If circumstances allow, apply for unemployment as soon as possible. It can often take time for your claim to be approved that you’ll have a short waiting period before you can start collecting, so the sooner you apply, the better.
10. Job Fairs
Attend as many job fairs as possible. Apply to anything that aligns with your work experience. Job fairs are also a great way to continue to network in your industry even after you secure new employment.
11. Don’t Be Shy
Don’t hide your situation. Yes, you may feel embarrassed, but there’s no shame in explaining to those close to you what you’re going through. Perhaps they know someone looking to hire help or will be willing to keep their eyes open for job opportunities that may be a good fit for you.
Some apps like Flashfood advertise food at discounted prices in your area. This is a great way to save money on groceries. Typically, it’s for fresh food, so even if you can’t eat it right away, you can freeze it and save it for later.
Most utility companies have programs for low-income earners where you can receive services at a discounted rate. Contact your utility providers to see if you qualify for reduced rates.
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