Financial survival plan for 2009

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Most economic forecasts for 2009 paint a rather dismal picture, highlighted by negative economic growth, higher unemployment, lower corporate profits and continued tight credit markets.

Most economic forecasts for 2009 paint a rather dismal picture, highlighted by negative economic growth, higher unemployment, lower corporate profits and continued tight credit markets. The economic impact of this recession will touch all of us; either through job loss, stagnant wages, poor investment returns, lower home values, mortgage foreclosure or even possible bankruptcy. This will be a rough ride!

Recognize: We are in a recession.

The National Bureau of Economic Research, on December 1, 2008, finally declared that the U.S. economy is in a recession and has been in one since December of 2007! Like NBER, many people may still be in denial about the severity of today’s economic circumstances. We are in it. The best thing that you and your family can do is to develop your financial survival plan for 2009, write it out, post it prominently in your home and then execute your plan throughout the year.

Maintain your cash flow.

If you are employed by a company, the decision about whether you stay or go is going to be made by someone other than yourself. Outside of seniority rules, the individuals with the most diversified job skills may have an advantage in keeping their jobs. To make yourself more valuable, take advantage of opportunities to work on special projects, broaden your skill set and most importantly, do an excellent job.

Keep your resume up to date and maintain a broad professional network outside of your current employer. Consider other job options. Seriously look at your family expenses over the next 30 days by keeping a detailed list of your spending. How can you reduce your spending by 10-15 percent now?

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