Stay at Home Ideas During Quarantine Time

03 Apr

If you are among the millions of Americans who find themselves with extra time due to working from home or not working at all, we decided to make a quick list of things you can do while weathering the pandemic to help keep your sanity.

Here are just a few jobs you can tackle while stuck at home:

Have a look at your credit report

If you have recently paid off a loan, credit card or made other financial changes to your life you may want to give your credit report a quick look to make sure all of the information is correct. It is not uncommon for errors to appear on a credit report and those errors can have a big impact on your credit score. 

You can hit to get a free copy of your credit report from each of the three major credit reporting agencies. Give your report a thorough review looking for credit cards you have paid off or cancelled as well as any outstanding loans you may have paid off. 

If there are late payment reports make sure they are accurate. If you find anything that is inaccurate, contact the company that reported the late payment immediately to get it corrected and removed from your credit report. Once you have cleaned up your credit report your credit score should be headed up in the near future. 

Shop Your Insurance Coverage

If your insurance premiums have been climbing in the last few years (and even if they haven’t) this is a great time to shop your coverage. Insurance companies rate risk differently which can result in dramatic differences in premium quotes. 

Contact at least five different insurance companies to get quotes and make sure you are comparing apples to apples when it comes to coverage levels and deductibles. You should shop all of your policies, homeowners, auto as well as any other policies you may have, including an umbrella policy. 

In addition to shopping your coverage, you should make sure you are getting all available discounts on your current policy. Ask your agent to do a discount review to verify that all of the discounts you are qualified to receive are being applied to your policy. Common discounts include bundling, long term customer, no claims discount, good student and many others. Discounts can make a huge difference, expect to shave 20 to 25 percent off of your policy. 

Finally, if you are struggling to cover your premium, consider raising your deductible. Doubling your deductible can lower your premium up to 25 percent but make sure you choose a deductible that you can easily afford in the event you have to make a claim. 

File your taxes

Despite the fact that the deadline to file your taxes has been pushed back to July 15th if you are going to be receiving a refund this year you might as well get your return filed as long as it’s not complicated enough to require a tax attorney or accountant.

Since you are stuck in your house, tax preparation software is the easiest way to go. There are a variety of software solutions out there, including TurboTax, H&R Block, Jackson Hewitt Online, Credit Karma Tax, and TaxAct are just a few options available.

Most of these programs have experts you can talk to online if questions come up. The sooner you file, the quicker your refund will be in your account. 

Clean Up Your Computer and Phone

If you have hundreds or even thousands of unread emails in your inbox, take this time to clean it up. Delete unneeded and unnecessary emails, working to get that unread number down to zero, or at least close to it. 

While you are at it, this is a good time to go through your laptop or home computer to clean off unused programs, delete files no longer needed and do a general cleanup. In addition to cleaning up your files and emails give your phone and laptop a wipe down with an alcohol wipe to give it a clean exterior as well. 

Do an Insurance Inventory

If your home is destroyed by a major storm or you are burglarized, one thing that will make the claim process much easier is a up to date home inventory. While this process is tedious, you currently have plenty of time and once it is done, updating it with new items is much easier. 

There are plenty of apps out there (your insurance company may offer one) that make this job easier and less strenuous than using a word document. Take photos of your belongings and enter the date purchased as well as the price you paid. With expensive electronics it is a good idea t to record serial numbers as well. Keep your inventory in the cloud or other off-site area. 

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