The cost of living is on the rise and is said to keep rising. Compared to last year, there is a 7.9% rise in consumer prices, and this is the highest rise in 40 years, skyrocketing the current cost of living.
Even though it was a win-lose situation, the US has had a brief period of deflation. As the economy progresses, there is bound to be inflation. Last year the US federal reserve suspected this rise in prices to be transitory, and now they imply that this may not last for years.
The adverse effects of inflation are neutralized if asset and income appreciation increase at a rate equal to or greater than inflation. Practically, this doesn’t happen all the time. Due to this situation, many people look for easy access to money; therefore, the payday loan and cash advance providers come out to play.
People living paycheck to paycheck, minimum wage earners, and households with only one source of income become victims of these companies as these options are the easiest and quickest way to grab cash. People choose these options without knowing how to get out of the payday loan trap.
For this reason, let’s look at a few points that may help you deal with the effects of inflation and not run out of money when you need it the most:
Create or re-evaluate your budget
Budgeting is a crucial step to beating the adverse effects of inflation. As prices rise, but your income doesn’t go up much to help tackle inflation, it’s time to adjust your budget. This is one of the best ways to manage inflation. You are constantly watching what you are buying, and you don’t rely on credit cards.
This will also help you prioritize your needs. When making a budget, prioritizing is Essen, and it. It enables you to understand what you need and don’t need to cut off unnecessary expenses.
Invest to be prepared for future inflation
Inflation may always continue to happen, and it might worsen. Investing to make some extra money is a better option than sitting and waiting for future inflation.
What are your options? Let’s have a look:
Firstly, investing in stocks
Owning a few equities is not a bad idea compared to what some people state. The idea is to be confident about the companies or stocks you invest in. You have to be sure that the stock you invest in will surely give you something in return. You have to look for companies that can increase the prices of their stocks as inflation moves. These businesses have enough pricing power to increase their prices and not be sidelined by their competitors.
Also, these companies have significant advantage during inflation because they offset their increased costs by raising their prices. Also, look for businesses with low capital needs; low-capital-requirement companies fare better during inflationary times than those that need to invest more money at ever-higher prices to maintain their current position.
Secondly, invest in yourself
You might think how investing in yourself in a financial crisis will help you. The answer is that you are re-evaluating your worth. You re-educate yourself; learn and be up to date in your field of work. If possible, you learn a new skill that can help you better your niche.
This way, you increase your worth and get paid more for your services. You can also have a side hustle if you have a hobby that can turn into a paying business.
Have a look at annuities
Depending on the type, annuities may provide inflation protection. An annuity is also known as “retirement insurance.” You pay a premium and receive a fixed monthly payment at the end of a specified term.
In this case, fixed annuities usually win out. Most people prefer them because of the lesser costs and the security of not thinking about the underlying assets’ value. Variable annuities can be a good option when looking for annuities that provide higher returns if the market performs well. After retirement, one can continue to make contributions and benefit from tax breaks. They do, however, have higher fees and are more complicated investments.
401(k) and other retirement plan participants may now have more annuity options available due to the SECURE Act recently signed into law. Employer-sponsored retirement plans are more accessible to incorporate annuity options due to several provisions in the act. For example, workers can now transfer their 401(k) annuities without incurring surrender charges or fees if they change jobs or if their employer no longer offers the annuity option.
Don’t neglect your savings account
Having an emergency savings fund is highly crucial. You may put three to six months’ worth of expenses aside in a savings account that will only be used as an emergency fund. Even though most savings account rates are low, it’s better to earn some interest than none. So consumers should look for high-yield online savings accounts, which typically offer significantly higher rates than the industry average.
Inflation may cause a lot of ups and downs in the upcoming days. The most critical and sure-shot way to beat it is by not panicking. Investing in the proper places, cutting out unnecessary expenses, and staying away from items that inflation has highly affected, might help you be many steps ahead of people who are just trying to figure things out. It’s all about the management and being relentless regarding your expenses.
Now is the time to act when it comes to your financial well-being. Be proactive; being reactive is not an option. Also, remember to make a plan that has enough wiggle room because a flexible financial plan is still essential in financial planning. Then again, it isn’t just your money on the line; it’s also your future.
About The Author: Lyle Solomon has extensive legal experience as well as in-depth knowledge and experience in consumer finance and writing. He has been a member of the California State Bar since 2003. He graduated from the University of the Pacific’s McGeorge School of Law in Sacramento, California, in 1998, and currently works for the Oak View Law Group in California as a Principal Attorney.