The Canada Emergency Response Benefit (CERB) provides financial support to self-employed and employed Canadians. It is now extended from 16 to 24 weeks. But Canada’s job market is battling uncertainty making job prospects unclear for many Canadians. Hence, it’s high time to strategize about your finances and what’s next to work for after your CERB gas out.
What is CERB?
The Canada Emergency Response Benefit (CERB) is a type of economic program launched to counter the COVID-19 crisis. The primary focus behind launching CERB is to provide temporary income to Canadians who lost their jobs amid the COVID-19 pandemic.
Applicants eligible for a program receive around $500 weekly for a maximum of 28 weeks. Almost 90 million Canadians have applied for CERB. That’s 25% of the total population in Canada. Now you sense how mercilessly corona has affected every corner of human lives.
While getting paid from CERB, there’s a limit on how much you can earn. If you’re getting too much, you might have to pay back the payment during that time.
Then there are taxes applied to the money. Although the Canadian government provides monthly income without cutting the taxes upfront, it doesn’t mean it’s tax-free. Recipients have to pay taxes depending on their total net income.
Here’s How You Can Handle Your Finances When Your CERB Ends
1. Look Back to Your Savings
Life is unpredictable, this is God’s truth we all have learned during the COVID-19 pandemic. Hence, it’s essential to look at your savings, as it will help you to counter unforeseen expenses, such as unexpected sickness, roof repair, or even getting your pantry refilled.
People mostly use credit cards to bail out hidden expenses. If you ask which one to choose- savings Vs. credit cards, it’s recommended to go with savings. A credit card will add interest to your debt making your condition worse.
2. Start Your Job Hunt, Even if Possibilities are Limited
Musicians, nannies, retail workers, small business owners, and more will start looking for jobs. Hence, you also need to get started. Update your resume on your LinkedIn profile. Brush up your communication and interviewing skills. Schedule as many virtual networking sessions as possible, especially if you’ve just immigrated to Canada.
Signed up for job alerts on multiple job search engines, contact recruiters, and look for a person in your friends or family who might give you relevant contact. Jobs are scarce right now in every sector, still, you need to be prepared to grab a good opportunity that comes your way.
3. Change Industries and Experience Growth
You should look for industries that set your financial growth. For example, anything to do with doorstep delivery, health care, safety equipment, and online digital marketing, witnessed a lot of demand during the COVID-19 pandemic and lockdowns.
Whereas fancy industries like- events, bars, restaurants, and travel will have to live in fear of a virus that can hit back anytime. You’ll also have to figure out how to use your skills to fit into a new industry and its workflow.
4. Stretch Your Working Hours, Create a Side Income Source
With job prospects uncertain, some people started side-hustling. For example- a delivery boy moonlights as a taxi driver on the weekends or a teacher signed up for an online tutor. In the beginning, doing more than one job will seem challenging but, it’s an excellent way to save some funds in your pocket on top of your salary.