We’re at the point now where people are starting to glimpse some silver linings around the COVID cloud. One such sliver of good news came when the three credit reporting agencies — Equifax, TransUnion, and Experian — announced they would be offering a free credit report every week (usually it’s one free report per year). They’ve pledged to offer this service for a year. So you know what I’ll be doing for the next year — but what can you be doing during your, as the French say, confinement?
Get your help on the books. So many nannies and housekeepers have been unable to collect unemployment because they wanted to be paid cash. Now they’re in a bad place because there is no help for them — and if they attempt to file for unemployment anyway, the state is going to want to talk to you. Do everything above board!
Consult with your financial planner. This is a time of transition, and so you should actually want to talk to this very important person in your life. They’re probably looking for stuff to do!
Look at your financial goals. If you’ve been paying attention, you know that reducing your credit card debt should be one of your top priorities. Go hunting through your statements and see what is being charged that you’re not using. You could cancel your gym memberships — though you may have to get the Attorney General involved. Also, don’t forget those dating apps you’re not using because you are a responsible, awesome person.
Get your will and advanced directives up to date. If you don’t have a will or if you haven’t redone your will in a long time, do that instead of staring at your cat. A few months ago I needed to update my will and I didn’t realize I hadn’t done it in so long. My kids weren’t even married, I didn’t have any grandkids. I thought I had updated it since those life events, but I thought wrong.
If you’re about to get a divorce and are stuck at home with your soon-to-be ex-spouse, count the ways you love them by counting the marital assets.
Hopefully three huge credit agencies giving away something that costs them nothing is just the tip of the iceberg. I think a lot of good has the potential to come out of this. Our environment is getting greener and cleaner, and now we know what we’re missing. I think that when this is all over, we’re going to want to reevaluate our lives and cut the fat a little bit. We’re missing a lot of things now, but I’m sure there’s a lot of things we don’t miss that we can live without when life goes on.