If you are anything like my family, your spending habits have changed significantly during the pandemic. If you managed to maintain employment throughout this whole period, then you may have found that your savings accounts actually increased.
Or maybe you are a stress shopper and managed to find more ways to spend money now that you have more time on your hands.
Either way, your spending habits are likely to change again as we approach what will be a new normal.
How have your spending habits changed during the pandemic? Below is a snapshot of my family’s and many of my clients’ significant expense changes over the last year and a half.
- Dining Out
- Deferred Student Loan Payments
- In-home entertainment
- Home goods
- House projects
- New hobby or passion project
- Stimulus check spending
The tricky thing with habits is they tend to stick. If you increased spending in some of the example areas above, will it be easy to move away from these newer habits as you start to ramp up spending on things you used to spend money on? I know that my wife and I have decided we are sticking with grocery delivery permanently.
If you didn’t receive a huge pay increase over the last year and a half it might be too strenuous on your personal finances to stack your old spending habits on top of your new habits as the world opens back up.
How to Prepare for Your Finances After the Pandemic
- Know where you’re money is going currently
- Identify your short-term goals and expenses that you can’t wait to do once things return to normal
- Ask yourself if they all will fit within your budget and still allow you to stay on track for your long-term goals?
- Identify lower priority expenses that can be removed in favor of expenses that will add more value to your life.
These simple yet effective steps will provide clarity on what you can comfortably afford as you begin to shift your spending habits moving forward.