Building Trades Credit Union
Planning for Life Events

Job Change Marriage Divorce Family Loss

When considering a new job or career change, you’ll need to take a hard look at how this will affect your personal finances. Some things to think about and compare, beyond basic salary differences, include:
> Changes in commuting costs and time.
> Benefit packages offered by your current and prospective employers.
> Differences in retirement savings plans.
> Pension vesting requirements if either company has a pension plan
> Job security, seniority and opportunities for advancement.

If you are one of the millions who lost a job during the recent economic downturn, there are strategies that can help reduce the financial pain. Even if you‘re still employed, you may be wise to consider ways you can prepare yourself financially for the possibility of job loss, especially if you sense layoffs may be coming.
> Hard as it may be, try to put aside at least three months’ worth of living expenses.
> Pay down household debt you may be carrying, and avoid incurring any new debt.
> Cut back on your discretionary spending, and defer major purchases if possible.
> Make dental and medical appointments while you still have coverage.

If you lose your job:
> Take advantage of benefits such as state unemployment assistance and employer-provided outplacement services.
> If you get severance pay, try to set aside 35 percent to 40 percent for income taxes.
> Communicate with your creditors to explain your job loss and request reduced payments or an extension of time to pay bills. Contact a BTCU Loan Officer at 1.800.496.2460 to discuss your options.
> Maintain your health insurance coverage through COBRA if that option is available.
> Try not to cash in tax-deferred retirement plan assets to pay living expenses, to avoid taxes and penalties; if you have no other option, withdraw only what is truly needed.
> If you own a home, talk to your mortgage lender. You may be able to arrange a forbearance agreement that enables you to reduce your payments for a set period of time.