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Mindful Moment with Mike: The Importance of Having a Budget in Place

Posted at 8:16 AM, Apr 15, 2020
and last updated 2020-04-20 08:56:17-04

TULSA — With so many small businesses closing shop, and restaurants only offering drive thru or curb side pickup, many Oklahomans are losing their job, or bringing home less money.

So how can you make ends meet?

2 Works for You's Mike Brooks talked with a financial expert Liz Stidham with TTCU Federal Credit Union, and she says now more than ever you need to have a budget.

First, you have to add up how much money is coming in, include savings, your stimulus check and your tax refund. And look at your total income for the next three months.

Now, we gathered what's coming in, and this is the hard part. How much is going out!

"Yes, this is the hard part so now you know what your income is. So now you have to take a hard look at what your expenses are. And I've always told our members, separate out your expenses into needs and wants. You're going to have to satisfy your needs. Those wants, you need to set those aside," says Liz. "Basically you've got to have housing , you have to have food, you need to keep your utilities paid and don't forget about insurance. It's critical right now to keep your health insurance going. Obviously if you're coming out in the positive, you're in the black still, then you're okay with your income coming in. If you're not, which unfortunately for a lot of people that is going to happen. Then you need to start adjusting what do I need to pay on those needs. And what I mean by that is that's when you need to pick up that phone and you need to start calling or emailing your lenders."

"Yes, definitely call your lender, call your credit union, call your bank. Who ever it is you prefer, just give them a call because I guarantee you they've got some solutions for you," says Liz.

Liz also says make only your minimum payments on your credit cards right now. Whic is unusual to advise that, but these are unusual times. Because we don't know how long this will last, and you need to stretch your income as far as possible.

We also talked about mortgage forbearance, which is not paying your mortgage for up to a year.

It sounds great. But could get you in real trouble. You'll learn why the next time we talk to Liz on Mindful Moment with Mike.

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