Here's how to prepare for a recession, if it actually happens
Published in Home and Consumer News
A recession could be on the way. Or it could not.
Economists have been predicting and prognosticating for months, some saying the economy will recede later this year, while others point to 2024. If it does happen, most agree it will be mild, not to the level of job losses from the 2007-09 Great Recession.
Regardless which forecast is right, financial experts say it's a good time to take a step back, put finances in order and think about job security just in case a recession does come to pass.
"There's a fair bit that we don't know. The crystal ball can be a little cloudy sometimes," said Ted Rossman, senior industry analyst for Bankrate.com. "A lot of these tips are good whether there's a recession in six months or whether there's not. At some point there will be one, sadly. We can't avoid it entirely."
Claudia Holt wished she had built up a bigger savings cushion before the Great Recession hit. In 2009, she bought a house and then lost her job at a nonprofit. She was unemployed for 10 months.
"It was incredibly stressful," she said. "That's actually how I got better at managing my money because I didn't have a choice."
She hung on to her house. But it was tough going for a while. She took on some odd jobs such as babysitting or cutting people's lawns to help stay afloat until she found a permanent position.
Today, she's director of programs and strategy for Prepare and Prosper, a St. Paul, Minnesota-based nonprofit that provides free financial coaching and tax preparation for low-income residents.
For starters, she said now is a good time to take inventory of one's financial situation and cash flow.
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