Natasha Carr | February 15, 2017

Recession proof your finances

TORONTO, ONTARIO, February 15, 2017 – It’s no secret; the economy in Alberta is taking a beating. Albertans are carrying record levels of debt and insolvency continues to rise every quarter as Canadians try to stay afloat. The average Albertan owes $27,956 in consumer debt and Canadians as a whole owe $1.68 for every dollar of disposable income. water piggy

Given the challenges of the economy and the rising debt levels because of it – the recession in Alberta has been a difficult one for many Albertans to shake. The current employment rate in Alberta rose 0.3 per cent to 8.8 per cent last month. As the workforce continues to shrink, many Albertans may be at their whit’s end trying to think of ways to not only manage their household finances, but also get a grip of their debt.

“Many Albertans feel like they are at the edge of a financial cliff and some are forced to borrow their way through this recession,” says Jeffrey Schwartz, executive director, Consolidated Credit Counseling Services of Canada.

“The economy in Alberta is struggling and if you are concerned about your job security, now is a good time to start to recession proof your finances,” says Schwartz.

With 50 per cent of Albertans living paycheque to paycheque and 42 per cent of Albertans spending more than what they are taking home – many are unable to save for a rainy day; causing more strain in the event of an emergency.  However the best defence to a shrinking economy is having a robust emergency fund especially in the event of an unexpected job loss. To help Albertans recession proof their finances – Consolidated Credit Counseling Services of Canada recommends the following:

Get on the offensive

Don’t wait for an emergency to shake your finances to the very core. Instead, stay ahead of the game and create an emergency fund.  Your emergency fund should have three to six months’ worth of living expenses saved. This way when an emergency arises – you will be prepared for the unexpected.

Create rations for yourself

When your debt is high and your finances are low – it’s time to get in survival mode. So sit down and strip your budget to its bare bones. Ditch the discretionary spending (eating out, leisure, shopping sprees etc.). Focus only on your needs (food, shelter, insurance etc.) and not wants.

I’ll buy that for a dollar

Drop your bad spending habits and learn new healthy ones. Identify if you spend out of habit (e.g. office coffee runs) or out of boredom and make the necessary adjustments on your end. Alternatively, you might get further along by using a personal finance app like Mint to help you track all of the money you spend or download a comparison app like Flipp to help you find the best dollar deals to help you spend less.

Make saving a habit

Once you start to cut back and have some new money in your budget, take your extras to your bank and watch your bank account grow! Make it easy for yourself by setting up automatic payments to a savings account through your bank.

Grab a life line

There’s a counsellor for virtually everything and your finances are no different. If your debt is weighing you down, seek help from a trained credit counsellor. A credit counsellor will help you to manage your debt and get you on the right track towards financial freedom.

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About Consolidated Credit Counseling Services of Canada, Inc.:

Consolidated Credit Counseling Services of Canada is a national non-profit credit counselling organization that teaches consumers about personal finance.

For more information or to request an interview with Jeffrey Schwartz, please contact:

Natasha Carr, Community and Public Relations Manager,
Consolidated Credit Counseling Services of Canada, Inc.,
T: 416-915-7283 ext.1041, C: 416-830-4720, F: 416-915-5200, E: ncarr@consolidatedcredit.ca

Consolidated Credit Counseling Services of Canada, Inc has been verified as the owner or operator of the Web site located at www.consolidatedcredit.ca. Official records confirm Consolidated Credit Counseling Services of Canada, Inc as a valid business. Call us today and see what we can do for you.

We are a proud member of the Canadian Association of Credit Counselling Services (CACCS), the national voice for not-for-profit credit counselling services. As a CACCS member, you can trust that our trained credit counsellors strive to provide the best in professional, independent and unbiased personal finance services. We’ve helped hundreds of thousands of Canadians find relief from debt. Call us today to find out if we can help you.

Consolidated Credit Counseling of Canada is proud to be a member and support the Toronto Board of Trade. Founded in 1845, the Toronto Board of Trade is Canada’s largest local chamber of commerce. We share their vision, passion and commitment to serving the community and to foster economic and social welfare of the City of Toronto. Call us today and see what we can do for you.

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We are proud members of the Ontario Association of Credit Counseling Services (OACCS). OACCS sets the standard of required expertise for the financial counseling industry and the only organization to offer the exclusive professional designation of Accredited Financial Counsellor Canada (AFCC). With over 500,000 people helped, you can be assured that we can find the right solution for you. Call us today.

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AFCC (Accredited Financial Counsellor Canada)

AFCC (Accredited Financial Counsellor Canada) is a distinguished professional designation, indicating that a counsellor has successfully completed the program and has specialized knowledge, unique skills and expertise as a qualified Credit Counsellor.

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