Being made redundant is a very unpleasant experience, especially if you were in a job you enjoyed. There’s a feeling of helplessness, that nothing you did was good enough but often it is simply a numbers game on behalf of the company or even beyond their control.
When you find out you are going to be made redundant, it is important to start preparing for this time in lots of ways to help you make it through with the least possible stress.
Don’t give it to worry
It is completely natural to be stopped still by the worry of what will happen after redundancy. But the first thing to do it get rid of that paralysis as quickly as possible.
Yes, you will be worried about finances, finding another job, paying the mortgage and all of that. But if you let the worry stop you, then you won’t get anywhere.
If you think redundancy is on the cards or you know it is, then start preparing immediately.
Obviously, the biggest worry is around finances and therefore getting them in order before the redundancy happens is a good step to take. For starters, do a debt audit – look at your credit score because there’s a chance this might go down when you don’t have a regular income. This means before redundancy is a good time to consolidate debts, change for a better credit card or even loans or mortgages. Don’t take on new debt, just try to keep the cost of existing debts as low as possible.
If you do have savings, you might even want to use some of it to pay off some debts although don’t leave yourself without an emergency fund for those unexpected expenses.
See if you can get help
There’s nothing wrong with claiming benefits that you are entitled to – we all contribute to the pot with our tax and national insurance. You may be to claim Jobseeker’s Allowance while looking for a job and you may be entitled to income support if you aren’t earning what you once were and are struggling. It may be worth giving them a call.
There are various departments available to help you see what you may be entitled to and what to do to make a claim.
Set up a budget
Once you know what you are entitled to and what income you have you can start creating a budget. This is important to help you spot if you haven’t got enough money coming in to cover your bills and essentials like food. There are lots of advice pages on the internet as well as charities such as Step Change and the Citizens Advice Bureau who can give you budgeting advice.
Don’t be afraid to approach companies to who you owe money and explain the situation. Some may be willing to help with reduced payments or other systems to assist until you get back on your feet.
See if you have any protection
Sometimes we forget what insurance is bundled into the products we buy so now is a good time to do an insurance audit. Look for mortgage protection and income protection to see if you have any of these policies that can help when you are out of work.
Also look for policies like Payment Protection Insurance for two reasons – either to see if you can use the policy if it is still in force. Or if you didn’t realise you had it, you might be able to claim back the money paid to it (often with interest) to boost those savings.
Shop around for everything
Making money go further is the aim of the game and that means spending a little time shopping around. Car and home insurance, gas and electricity suppliers, even your groceries – there are lots of ways to shop around online and these can result in savings for the cost of a little time.
Make the most of the online comparison sites to see if you can get a better deal for everything you pay but always watch for charges to cancel mid-contract as these can wipe out the benefit of switching.