The COVID-19 pandemic has changed our lives in many ways. It’s impacting how we work, socialize, and, ultimately, how we live. Dental practices have had to rethink how they operate – which may have resulted in employing less staff, working reduced hours, and scheduling fewer appointments. Whether it be from job loss, layoff, or reduced income, many families are likely feeling the impact of the economic downturn. CDSPI is here to help you navigate these uncertain times.
Here are some financial tips to help cope with reduced or lost income.
Create a budget and plan for the year ahead
Examine where your money is going and how your priorities might need to change for the time being, while on a reduced income. This will help you create a budget that’s realistic moving forward. An Investment Planning Advisor* from CDSPI can review your current situation, and your financial plan to help determine if this is the right decision for you.
The budget you create will help you to see how much you owe and how much you pay in interest every month. As a dentist, your occupation combined with a good credit score, could allow you reorganize your debt to make lower payments. An Investment Planning Advisor can work with your bank to discuss possibly refinancing your mortgage, your practice loan, or consolidating debt to reduce your monthly payments.
Save on basics
Review your expenses and consider what you can live without. Think about finding something similar that costs less or is perhaps free. Some of these expenses are books, magazines, subscriptions, or gym memberships. Many expenses are part of bigger bills. Look at your TV cable, internet and cell phone packages, and contact the providers to figure out how you can lower your monthly bill. Consider if it would be helpful for upcoming bills, such as your annual insurance premiums, to be converted into smaller monthly payments to increase cash flow in the short term.
Cut back on spending
Online shopping and ordering meals are two of the most common ways to spend a lot of money. When shopping, stick to essentials, support local where possible, and consider your needs versus wants. Perhaps reward yourself occasionally to stay motivated. Cooking at home is also a way to cut costs. You can also control the ingredients you use, meaning you can reduce the salt, fat and sugar, and practice better portion control. This will help you save money and improve your health at the same time.
Bring staff and family into the conversation
Consider sharing financial changes and updates with staff in the workplace, and with family at home. As a business owner and/or a parent, the instinct is often to take on the burden by yourself. However, by having a discussion with staff about necessary cuts that must be made (even to their salaries), you’re being transparent and letting them know they’re not alone – that it’s a shared struggle. Similarly, reducing kids’ allowances at home is a great opportunity for a small life/financial lesson – reminding them that life has ups and downs and as a family, you’re in this together.
Learn about government benefits
Depending on your current financial situation, you may qualify for various government benefits. We’re pleased to provide you with regular updates from MNP. You can get more information by visiting cdspi.com/covid-19.
Seek professional advice
The right advice makes all the difference. An Investment Planning Advisor from CDSPI can help you create a financial plan if you don’t already have one, or provide an objective review of your existing one. Since our advisors are non-commissioned, you can be sure that the advice you receive is always in your best interests. And because CDSPI is a member benefit of your dental organization – there is no cost to you.
Book a meeting to discuss how CDSPI can help you navigate these uncertain times.
*Investment Advisory services are provided by licensed advisors at CDSPI Advisory Services Inc. Restrictions may apply to advisory services in certain jurisdictions.