COVID-19 has led families to cancel travel plans, get (semi!) comfortable with homeschooling kids and deal with all kinds of other inconveniences.
As if that weren’t enough, it’s also making many families take a closer look at their finances and make sometimes difficult financial decisions.
Life Happens recently conducted a survey that polled more than 2,000 adult Americans about how the pandemic changed their financial views and behaviors. Our “Tough Talks During COVID-19” survey results showed that dramatic changes are taking place.
For starters, more than two-thirds (67%) of respondents said that COVID-19 has served as a wake-up call to reevaluate their finances. Many of these respondents feel more comfortable talking about financial matters around the dinner table—today, only 40% feel uncomfortable having these discussions versus 45% in January 2020 before the pandemic hit.
What Families Are Talking About
Here’s what our respondents said comes up when they have these conversions:
• Wills and inheritance (33%)
• Current health issues and concerns (32%)
• Life insurance coverage (30%)
• Current financial status (29%)
• Emergency savings (27%)
• Future emergency plans (26%)
• Politics (25%)
Families Also Changing Financial Habits
Besides having these discussions, families have also changed their financial behavior since COVID-19 surfaced. The changes include:
• Cutting excess spending (49%)
• Building up savings and emergency funds (45%)
• Continue working and delay their planned retirement date (43%)
• Dipping into retirement funds (37%)
• Focusing on paying down debts (24%)