Don't Wait For Financial Crisis To Adjust Your Lifestyle

If you’re worried some financial cataclysm will knock you into a miserable life situation, why not jump the gun and start slumming it to anticipate the meltdown? MSN Money writer Donna Freedman advises such a maneuver, along with other pre-emptive strikes against destitution.

Chief among Freedman’s advice is to ensure you’ll have a roof over your head even after the worst-case scenario:

How long could you keep a roof over your head if you lost your job? Would a month’s worth of unemployment checks cover a month’s worth of housing? Or suppose your rent goes up just as your hours get cut at work — what then?

Think about this now. Right now. Maybe you could seek out cheaper digs or move in with a family member. Maybe you could take in a housemate or two. You could start searching for a job that will let you live rent-free, such as live-in nanny or apartment house manager.

Freedman also recommends coupon clipping, scoping out the post-employment health care scene and drop any pretenses when it comes to finding new work. You can overcome fears of unemployment by strategizing ways to mitigate the worst-case scenario.

Swallow your pride — and seek aid [MSN Money, via Boston Gal’s Open Wallet]
(Photo: Kevin Dean,