Surviving an Unexpected Layoff

Editor’s Note: According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics’ latest report, the unemployment rate fell to 5.9% last month, the first time it’s been under 6% since 2008. Other indicators of joblessness are also falling: The number of long-term unemployed (those out of work more than six months) is now under 3 million for the first time since the recovery, while less than 700,000 people report that they’ve given up looking for work because none is available, down from more than a million in 2010. Plus, layoffs recently hit a 10-year low.1

While this might be a positive signal, the jobs recovery is still incomplete. Since the height of the Great Recession, layoffs have become less common across the job market, but it’s still important to keep these lessons in mind, regardless of your current employment situation.

An unexpected job loss can be one of the most difficult things to endure, especially from a financial standpoint. If you and your family rely on employment income to pay for living expenses, losing your job can cause drastic changes to your current lifestyle. While you might be coping with feelings of shock or disbelief, it’s important to pick yourself up and face the problem rationally. You’ve lost your job — now what do you do? This article will focus on a few ideas that can dramatically improve your situation.

Surviving an Unexpected Layoff

Notify Your Financial Planner

Schedule a meeting with your financial planner to let them know about your job loss and anything that alters your financial situation. He or she can help you re-evaluate your plan so you can rely on your current assets to cover day-to-day expenses until you find a new source of income. If you invest in a high-risk portfolio, you might want to re-evaluate the risk and invest in something more conservative. If you’re close to retirement, you might want to ask your advisor if retiring early is a feasible option. Your financial advisor can help you make those decisions. If you don’t have a personal financial planner, there are many organizations that offer free one-time meetings. For example, the CFP® Board regularly hosts Financial Planning Clinics throughout the country. At these clinics, local CFP® professionals meet with attendees and provide free financial guidance and advice. Losing a job can be difficult to talk about, but communicating with your financial planner is key. Help them help you.

Reach Out to Your Network

Network, network, network! Reaching out to your social and professional networks can be the difference between finding a new employment opportunity and delaying employment. Whether it’s a former colleague or fellow alum, reach out to people who can speak to your professional knowledge. And by reach out, I mean call them, email them, connect with them on LinkedIn, Facebook message them, tweet them or text them! They might know of a few opportunities where your skills and background would provide a great fit. Remember, it’s not what you know; it’s who knows what you know.

Supplement Your Income

This is a great opportunity to tap into your interests and find ways to earn extra income. Fiverr.com is one resource that allows people to list a broad range of professional services for sale. For instance, let’s say you’re a really good writer. You can write business plans, essays or even letters for people on Fiverr for a set compensation per project. Or, perhaps you have a lot of old things laying around the house you no longer use. Well, you can sell those things on eBay! Own a car? Apply to be a driver for companies like Lyft or Uber. Thanks to the Internet, there are more ways than ever to earn some extra cash. You just have to be creative and resourceful in your approach!

Looking Ahead

Losing your job can be very tough, but it’s important to look around and approach the situation rationally. Be sure to communicate with your financial planner so they can help you manage your finances accordingly. Reach out to your network to see if anyone knows of open employment opportunities that might be a good fit for you. Find others who are willing to pay for your professional services, or sell some old things around the house to supplement your income temporarily. Using your resources and reaching out to your social connections can help you bounce back quicker than you might have thought!

 

Hewins Financial Advisors, LLC d/b/a Wipfli Hewins Investment Advisors, LLC (“Hewins”) is an investment advisor registered with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) under the Investment Advisers Act of 1940. Hewins is a proud affiliate of Wipfli LLP. Information pertaining to Hewins’ advisory operations, services and fees is set forth in Hewins’ current Form ADV Part 2A brochure, copies of which are available upon request at no cost or at www.adviserinfo.sec.gov. The views expressed by the author are the author’s alone and do not necessarily represent the views of Hewins or its affiliates. The information contained in any third-party resource cited herein is not owned or controlled by Hewins, and Hewins does not guarantee the accuracy or reliability of any information that may be found in such resources. Links to any third-party resource are provided as a courtesy for reference only and are not intended to be, and do not act as, an endorsement by Hewins of the third party or any of its content or use of its content. The standard information provided in this blog is for general purposes only and should not be construed as, or used as a substitute for, financial, investment or other professional advice. If you have questions regarding your financial situation, you should consult your financial planner, investment advisor, attorney or other professional. Hewins does not provide tax, accounting or legal services.
Sergio Campos
Sergio Campos

Technology Associate

Sergio Campos is the Technology Associate for Hewins Financial Advisors, based in Redwood City, CA. Sergio serves on Hewins' Operations Team, primarily focusing on issues related to digital security and technology trends impacting the advisory industry.

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Surviving an Unexpected Layoff

time to read: 3 min