Has Covid Changed How You Handle Finances?

If anything, covid has made me feel incredibly insecure. About my life, my relationships, my friendships, my home, my health, my career, and my finances. Insecure about everything, really.

I have a generalized fear now that any or all of the above can be taken away from me at any time. With no warning or sufficient time to prepare. I used to believe that I had some form of control over all that, but no longer.

I realize that I’m incredibly fortunate that neither me or my husband lost our jobs during covid. We didn’t lose our income and I feel like we shouldn’t squander or waste such a blessing.

So I’ve been saving as much as I can and it’s been accumulating quite fast since we aren’t travelling, socializing, eating out, or spending as much as we used to prior to covid.

And it’s accumulated to the point where we need to make a big decision soon. We have no debt except for our mortgage. And we’ve had our mortgage long enough (forever!) that we only have 8 years left on it.

Prior to covid, I would have easily decided to take such savings and invest it in order to create a new income stream.

However, my new covid fear is making me want to pay off the mortgage instead. Because I’m so worried that one or both of us might lose our job, and then not being able to afford the mortgage anymore would jeopardize having a safe and comfortable home.

But on the other hand, since I’m so worried about one or both of us losing our job, then having an extra income stream might alleviate some of that fear. And I only have to power-through my fear for 8 more years anyway, as the mortgage would be paid off by then.

And at the same time, this insecurity is also pressing me to not touch those savings at all. Because if we do lose our jobs, then we’ll need those savings to pay all our bills and survive until we find another job, which could be months or years!


So I don’t know what to do.

Do you all worry about this stuff too or am I being a weirdo? I’m just scared overall. And I’ll continue to be scared no matter what I do.

10 Replies to “Has Covid Changed How You Handle Finances?”

  1. You are not a weirdo.

    If anything, COVID has had a little bit of the opposite effect on my finances. I did some extra work right before COVID that would result in me getting a higher salary (ongoing), and we also got an across-the-board cost of living increase, in addition to making a little bit more money because we all had to do more work for COVID reasons. Between that and all the stimuli from the government money printer, I made far more money in 2020 than I ever have before, and I’m on track to make even more in 2021, more than I ever thought I would see in my life. (It’s not as much as I’m making it sound, but still more than I ever expected to make without a major career change.) Combine that with the fact that sports tickets and concerts were shut down for a long time, and I didn’t do as much driving back and forth to work last year, and now I’m a little more likely to splurge on things. I spent a lot of money on a nice bicycle recently, and I got some things for around the house. And I’ve been giving more to charitable causes than I did before.

    However, I share the same uneasiness regarding major home repairs and upgrades, part of the motivation behind working to make more money in the first place. Given the way my state has reacted to COVID and still is compared to other states, I’m no longer certain that I’m going to stay here long term. I can’t take another year of working from home and not being allowed to see my friends (that isn’t happening yet, but given the way last year went I have an uneasy feeling that it will). But whether or not to move somewhere else that values freedom more is a very complicated decision for a number of reasons, including the fact that I wouldn’t make nearly as much money doing this job somewhere else if I were to have to start over. So that is where my uncertainty and uneasiness is coming from…

    1. Hi Greg! Oh wow! You are very lucky (plus you also put in all the hard work too!) to increase your income last year and this year! That’s awesome for you. Oh I totally understand why you’d consider moving. If my state was incredibly strict about covid, I’d be considering the exact same thing. But having to start over completely is such a big risk. I’m curious what you’ll end up deciding to do! Maybe you’ll end up near me and we’ll be new neighbors! 🙂

  2. It’s good to be more mindful about one’s financial well-being. I’ve cut back on discretionary spending quite a lot. I’m careful but not frightened.

  3. You really aren’t a weirdo.. I did loose my job during the pandemic and had no compensation from it.. Just the months salary of the last month I worked and that was it.. I had just taken out a mortgage too.. I have been scared about the restrictions being lifted, constantly worried about money and overall anxious…

    I’m only now just back in employment after 8months and I couldn’t be more grateful for that..

    It is a relief to know there are others out there feeling the same way I am so we can support and encourage each other.. Thank you for sharing 💛

    1. Oh I’m so happy to hear that you’ve found employment again! That’s great news and I’m glad for you. Is your anxiety starting to feel better now because of that? That much worry all the time isn’t a good place to be so I hope that’s improved for you. 🙂

  4. COVID didn’t cause my husband and I to change how we handle our finances but my illnesses did. Once we had to go down to 1 income we took a look at where every penny was being spent and developed a budget that worked so much better for us. When we got to a point of having enough savings to question what we should do with it, we talked with a financial advisor so that we could best meet our short and long term goals.

    1. Ah I’m so glad to hear that you both are still able to successfully save towards your goals, but I’m sorry to hear about your illnesses. Long-term illnesses are so difficult to handle – not just financially, but mentally and emotionally too. I hope you are doing ok and I’ll be thinking of you! {{BIG HUGS}}

  5. Like in your situation, we’ve been lucky that we both continue to be employed. That said, I have been making saving a priority for the very reason you state above–we may be okay for now, but there’s no knowing what the future brings.

    1. I’ve never been so uncertain of my future, as I am now. 🙁

      I’ve never felt at-risk of being laid-off before. But now I’m living with this fear non-stop. Every time my boss calls a 1-on-1 meeting with me, I feel like “this is it”. And then my secondary fear is that I won’t be able to find new employment – especially if businesses are scaling-back or locked-down. So I’m just a nervous-wreck. I can control my saving/spending to a certain extent, so I’m obsessing over that too. 🙁

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