Feeling Financially Insecure Due to the Delta Variant? 3 Moves to Make Now

A worried caregiver works on a laptop next to their homeschooled child.

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The pandemic is still with us. These moves could help address some of your financial worries.

Though many of us hoped the pandemic would be long behind us by now, the delta variant changed the course of the outbreak for the worse. And while things may have improved modestly in recent weeks, we don't know whether the cold weather months will cause another massive surge in COVID-19 cases.

Of course, the worse things are with the pandemic, the more the economy suffers. That could mean an uptick in joblessness and more supply chain issues that lead to higher living costs. If you're worried about the financial impact of the delta variant, here are some key moves to make immediately.

1. Boost your emergency savings

The more money you have in your savings account, the more protection you have if you lose your job or experience another financial blow in the coming months. As a general rule, it's a good idea to sock away enough to cover three to six months' worth of essential living costs. If your savings balance currently hovers around the lower end of that range, you may want to work toward the higher end.

It's especially important to boost your emergency fund if you work in an industry that could be hit hard by COVID-related shutdowns. For example, if you're a hotel or restaurant employee, you may want to get more money into your savings in case your place of work is shuttered temporarily.

2. Refinance your mortgage

The less you spend on housing expenses, the easier it is to boost your savings. Plus, having lower bills could ease some of your worries if your work hours are cut, or if you're laid off altogether.

Right now, mortgage rates are sitting at very attractive levels, historically speaking, so it's a good time to think about refinancing to a new home loan. Doing so could lower your monthly payments substantially.

3. Get a second job

The pandemic has already resulted in widespread job loss the economy is still recovering from. And if things take a turn for the worse, more people could find themselves out of work.

That's why now's a great time to consider a side hustle. For one thing, it gives you a job to fall back on if your main source of income takes a hit. Working a second gig also makes it easier to scrounge up cash for your emergency fund. Plus, with everything from gas to groceries costing more money these days, having extra income is sure to come in handy.

Give yourself peace of mind

It's easy to see why so many people feel financially insecure right now. If you're worried about the state of the pandemic and the impact it might have on your wallet, make these important moves. Doing so could help you sleep better at night and stay calm when there's still a lot of financial turbulence to grapple with.

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