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Surviving the Government Shutdown - Tips from Your Bank

More than 800,000 individuals are currently being impacted by the partial government shutdown; and not all impacted workers will be able to count on retroactive pay after the shutdown ends, which means the road to financial recovery could be long and hard.

Studies show that most American families rely on each paycheck to get by. A full 78 percent of U.S. workers say they live paycheck to paycheck, according to a 2017 report by employment website CareerBuilder. Just as troubling, almost 4 in 10 Americans are unable to cover a $400 unexpected expense, according to the Federal Reserve Board. This means that some federal employees have drained their savings already in an attempt to remain financially stable. A survey by found that only 18 percent of Americans have enough saved for an emergency to cover three to five months.

PriorityOne Bank is here to help, if you have been impacted by the partial shutdown. Below are a few tips for immediate steps to take.

  1. Contact creditors – Immediately reach out to all creditors before payments are missed, such as credit cards, mortgages, car loans, etc.
  2. Switch to an emergency budget – Revisit your budget and list all of your monthly expenses, including bills and debt as well as food, clothing and household items. Create a new budget that includes only the bare necessities.
  3. Cut back on spending – Take a look at the last couple months of spending and cut out everything you can live without. Essential expenses include things such as utilities, transportation, mortgage or rent payments and food. Look at some of your spending and decide if you really need to be paying for things like cable, other entertainment, or personal care during this time.
  4. Community resources – See if there are any charities out there offering guidance or businesses offering discounts or free services. There are a variety of businesses that are offering free or discounted meals, programs, and services to government employees impacted by the shutdown.
  5. Take inventory – Take inventory of your skills and see if there is any freelance or side work during the interim.
  6. Get professional financial assistance – every financial situation is different. PriorityOne can help furloughed federal employees with budgeting and financial counseling if you are having trouble making ends meet. 

If you are in need of financial counseling, please contact your nearest PriorityOne Bank Branch.


Sources for this article:

American Consumer Credit Counseling,, Federal Reserve Board,