Personal finance guru Suze Orman says in the midst of today’s health and economic crisis, you need to face adversity and fear and become a “warrior.”
But the author, TV personality and podcaster says that’s not easy, as millions lose their jobs, markets go through seizures and retirement balances dwindle.
Still, she says you just need try to look past the “now” and focus on your long-term financial goals.
Here are 16 do’s and don’ts Orman has been sharing, to help you hold your finances together in the midst of COVID-19.
1. Do put your bills on hold, if you’re able
As the coronavirus financial crisis worsens, homeowners are getting a break from mortgage payments, some states and communities are protecting renters from being evicted, and Americans with student loans can stop payments for two months, interest-free.
“If you can’t pay your bills, or could really use some short-term relief, call anyone you owe money to and ask them what help is available,” Orman says, in her “Women & Money” podcast.
Call your credit card issuers to find out what they can do for you, because some have suspended interest charges. “Are there long wait times on customer service lines? So what? You’ve got time,” says the money maven.
Car insurers are currently giving policyholders breaks on premiums. If your car insurance company isn’t doing that, maybe it’s time to shop around for cheaper coverage.
2. Don’t panic-sell your stocks
When the stock market’s coronavirus crash began in February, Suze Orman’s initial reaction was that investors should “rejoice,” because they could buy great stocks at bargain-basement prices. She said the worst thing an investor could do was panic and sell shares.
Stocks sank to multiyear lows on March 20; they’ve regained a lot of ground since then but are still way down from early in the year. Orman says investors need to hang on.
“Fortunes are going to be made out of this time. So just stay calm,” she recently said on CNBC. “I can guarantee you that if you stay in and you just stick with it, three years from now you will be very, very happy that you did.”
You might get some help fighting the temptation to sell stocks by hiring an affordable financial adviser of your own. Those services are available online now — so don’t worry about social distancing.