Sunday, January 20, 2013

A Drive and A Good Talk

Every once in awhile, I have the pleasure of being able to bring Hubby with me to work. I especially love it when we have to go out of town, so I have his undivided attention for a few hours. We usually take this time to reconnect through conversation, and the other day was no different.

I was finally able to tell him my concerns about a work situation. I know that no one has any true security in their job anymore, and I am no exception. Thinking about the very real possibility of job loss, I wanted to talk about what we could and would do if one or both of us were to lose our jobs through no fault of our own.

As much as I love my Hubby, I know that he is a typically pessimistic person and that he usually brings my optimism down a notch or three. So for this conversation, I was not particularly looking forward to having it, nor was I thinking it would be a good one.

I was wrong. (And that does not happen very often.)

Hubby talked about the situations going on at his place of employment, and how it could possibly end up with him having a job loss. Please understand, that since he was 16 years old, Hubby has never been without work for more than a week, so unemployment for any length of time would be a whole different thing for him.

We talked about his options: going back to school for trade specific training, or for a whole new line of work altogether. He said he was willing to take almost any job that paid more than minimum wage, and if necessary, would take a min. wage job too.

We also talked about my options should I become unemployed. I offered a few suggestions of where I might also apply to work to stay in the same field, along with what I could do to increase business should I decide to stay self-employed. If worse came to worse, I would take whatever job I could in order to keep our family afloat.

Things that we could do financially to keep us going were a big part of the conversation. We talked about reducing cable, cellphones, and other variable expenses would be our first line of defense. Preparation was also a main point in the conversation. We agreed that we have been lax in the area of saving up enough money to see us through a rough patch, and have resolved to fix this as best as we can. So on Sunday, I sat down with the budget and financial plan and re prioritised our 2013 goals page. I will sleep better at night once we have at least $1000 each in our Emergency Fund and Emergency Essential Expenses accounts. As for the taxes owing, well, the sooner I get that paid off, the better we will be all the way around. I will be posting occasionally about how we are bumping up these funds and paying off the tax man.

We are no longer burying our heads in the sand. We're thinking like optimists but planning like pessimists.

Have you put any thought into how your family budget would survive a job loss or god forbid, a double job loss? What would you do?


  1. Honestly thats awesome! Having experienced job loss for an extended period of time in 2012 I know first hand what it feels like to be unemployed and boy does it suck! I know how much preparation for this including a reduction in expenses and living like minimalists for awhile really helped K and I to get through it...and I was unemployed for 9 months and I never thought I would be...thats life eh? You just never know and that is what makes Gail's phrase "Live like an optimist but plan like a pessimist" ring true :)

  2. Good Morning Eboo!
    I hear your concerns loud and clear. In fact, job loss is what drove DH and I out of London to Calgary. I lost half my hours at work, and my side-gig of teaching wasn't consistent enough to make up the difference, and we saw ourselves going under. I looked for months to try to find a better (or any) job, but when we realized it wasn't going to happen for me in time, we used our emergency fund to move ourselves to an area with a stronger economy. We also had the safety net of living rent-free with my parents for a couple of months.

    Now DH and I are settled with well paying jobs that we like, and no threat of job loss. Having an E-fund has been totally out of my mind, but you remind me that it's a very necessary thing - just in case.

    I think it's GREAT that you and your hubby had such a great talk about it. Lots of couples can't do that. Good on you both!

  3. That's wonderful that you had a solid couple of hours to work through everything... I always tend to worry about "what if" so i'm forever looking at building up our EF/savings and just praying for the best. We are at $3K right now, which is a huge amount for us and has taken us a long time to save. I know it wouldn't last very long if something were to happen to hubbys job, so I will continue to save as much as I can while still enjoying life! All you can do! ;)

  4. Good job at getting the ball rolling. I myself find it difficult trying to build a business with no savings to back us at the moment; I do try to stay optimistic but we all have those "scary" days