Medieval historians claim that the worst year ever was 536, when a bizarre fog darkened the sun and plunged parts of Europe, the Middle East, and Asia into relentless darkness for up to 18 months. There was a great famine, a plague pandemic, mass extinctions, and a summer so cold that fresh crops died under beds of snow.
The second worst year known to mankind, although not yet explained, could only be 2020. Like 536, 2020 saw famine, bizarre weather, and a plague that killed millions of people around the world.
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During all of this turmoil, we have been forced to strain our money, stay cool during a collapsing economy, and figure out how to control our bills when income is unstable or absent. It was a time of great tragedy, but also one that gave us great wisdom. Here’s a look at the key financial lessons people learned in 2020 and how they will use them in the future.
Last updated: June 28, 2021
We need more savings
We always knew it was important to save money, but the pandemic really hammered that message. According to Clevers COVID-19 Financial Impact Series, about 60% of Americans say their emergency savings won’t last until the end of the year or that they already run out of savings.
“The (last) year has taught me to save at least one year of cash reserves personally and in all of my businesses, because as we have seen this year, even six months of savings are not enough to live on. “said KC Evans, a business investor based in Utah. “The year 2020 would have been much easier to survive if everyone and every company had devoted more attention to building an emergency savings account.”
We have too many subscriptions
“One thing I’ll be doing differently in 2021 is reducing the number of services that are automatically deducted from my accounts,” said Donny Gamble, founder of RetirementInvestments.com. “We’ve all signed up for too many of these services and it adds up without many of us really understanding how much they cost. I’m talking about platforms like Netflix, Crave TV, Spotify, Apple Music, fitness apps, and more. I’m even going to cut down on other subscription services I use for my business like Ahrefs, QuickBooks, and more. “
In 2019, Americans spent an average of $ 640 on digital subscriptions, according to a New York Times analysis by Mint. If we look back next year, that number could go down.
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Staying at home can save you money
“My wife and I accidentally saved thousands of dollars by simply working from home during our self-imposed quarantine,” said Michael Bonebright, consumer analyst at DealNews.com. “We used to do tons of side purchases to and from a downtown office every day and were shocked at how much money we can save by just staying home. I plan to be back in a few days.” a week my kids left virtual school but the savings they don’t have every day speak for themselves. “
Bitcoin is back
Bitcoin was all the rage a few years ago – but then the excitement died down. Now that the economy is a mess, digital currency is back in vogue.
“Because of the 2020 weirdness, I’m putting 33% of my fortune in Bitcoin,” said Brian Robben, CEO of Seal media. “This investment protects against inflation and has a limited supply of only 21 million Bitcoin. Basic economics says that when supply gets shorter, demand (price) increases. That’s why I trust my hard earned money in Bitcoin. “
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Don’t let stocks panic
Thinking of 2020 as a test, one of the virtues that it really doubled to was patience. In late spring and early summer, when the economy bottomed out, it was difficult to remain level-headed and not to tear the stocks that you had on the stock exchange back into your wallet. Despite the unrest, people like James Shaffer, founder and CEO of Snowlink, have remained optimistic about their investments.
“The troubled times of 2020 led me to double down on my longstanding hands-on approach to investing – I didn’t sell stocks and I’ve been slowly getting into index funds and bond funds,” Shaffer said. “Especially during the pandemic, my investment mantra is: ‘No matter how good or bad the market looks, stick with it.'”
Time is money – save it
Trish DaCosta, founder of BarbellPilates.com and founder of the Barbell Pilates Sisterhood, focused on investment property purchase over the next year; but she also spends more money on goods and services that save her time.
“Housekeeping, hiring a virtual assistant, shopping online for the essentials instead of going to the store – these are the types of investments that win back my time so that I can focus on the activities that generate the greatest ROI (return on return on investment) Investment) in my life and business, ”said DaCosta.
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