The following is a list of money saving ideas and resources for Canadians to help you during this time of financial stress due to the coronavirus.
COVID-19 has created an overwhelming mix of employment income challenges, increased expenses and emotions running high.
The good news is, there are a lot of resources available to you and your family and opportunities to cut expenses too.
If you have additional resources, please comment below and we’ll add it to the list if it’s helpful.
If you have a mortgage, you are likely able to skip a payment (or even more). Contact your mortgage lender or broker to find out what is possible. The major banks have announced that they will extend payment deferrals for up to 6 months.
Demand for this will likely increase over the coming weeks, so if you have a sense that you might need this, you may want to consider getting the process started now.
If you are a renter, the federal government has announced that some financial relief is coming to cover the cost of food and rent. The details of how and when though are yet to be announced.
If you are unable to pay your rent, it is best to communicate with your landlord. If you are worried about possible eviction, it would be best to find out what your rights are through your provincial landlord tenant rights organization.
Many provincial governments are working to ban evictions during the COVID-19 crisis.
Unemployment & Sick Leave
If you have been laid off work or have lost wages due to being in quarantine, you can apply for employment insurance through the Government of Canada website.
Self Employed or Without Employment Insurance
Recently announced, the Emergency Care Benefit would give those who qualify up to $900 bi-weekly for up to 15 weeks. This benefit is for people who are self employed, uninsured or not able to work due to sickness, quarantine or caring for a sick family member.
How to Apply For the Emergency Care Benefit
If you do not have one of these CRA accounts, you should start the process now.
Child Tax Benefit
Trudeau also said that Ottawa is temporarily boosting the Canada Child Benefit (CBB) over the coming months by $300 per child for the 2019-2020 benefit year.
Effective March 30, 2020, the federal government is offering a six-month, interest-free reprieve on student loan payments. They are offering no payments or interest. Check here for updates and details.
Credit and Loans
If you have other types of loans and credit debt , you may also be able to access deferred payments. Check with your lender for more details. Please comment below if you had success in this area!
The major telecommunications companies have promised customers they will not be billed for internet data overages, however, now would be a great time to shop around for a better rate plan as there are typically lower cost plans available through smaller internet retailers.
To cut additional costs, you could look at your cell phone plan and see if it could be downgraded to a lower data plan. Since you are likely at home or have access to Wifi, your data needs may be lower. You could potentially save a considerable amount of money.
Comparing rates from different providers is also an excellent way to negotiate with your current provider.
Check with your local energy provider, they may be offering a bill relief program.
If you have more than one vehicle in your family and know that you could probably live with just one vehicle for the time being, you may consider downgrading your insurance on one of the vehicles to save money. Call your insurance broker to discuss your options.
You may also consider selling your second vehicle to raise additional money.
If you pay for security monitoring, you may be able to request a payment deferral. In some cases, companies will allow you to have a payment free period and just extend the length of your contract.
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