Marcus Lawrence | 

5 Cheap & Easy Ways to Prepare for a Financial Emergency

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There’s a lot of financial uncertainty now, as the coronavirus continues to spread throughout the world, and companies are feeling the weight of the new economic recession.

Couponing and generally never paying full price for anything is our go-to money-saving method, but when things get really tough, you’ll want to have some safeguards in place.

The following are five things you can do right now to protect your family in the event of a financial emergency.


1. Put spare change in savings easily with Qapital for free.

Qapital is a free personal finance service, available to iPhone and Android users. It provides lots of information about spending habits — which is really helpful — but my favorite feature of Qapital is their “rules” function.

You can set rules for savings, such as rounding up purchases to the nearest dollar, with the difference being stashed away in a savings account. Qapital “gamifies” savings and makes it pretty stinking easy. It’s a solid way to start creating an emergency fund.

Also: Acorns does kind of the same thing, rounding up purchases but depositing the difference into Exchange-Traded Funds. Acorns memberships start at just $1/month.


2. Protect your income with disability insurance from Breeze.

Breeze website showing a nice family

In addition to your regular health insurance, having disability insurance protects your income in case you get injured or sick and can’t work — whether you’re an employee, a contractor, or even a gig worker (like DoorDash, Instacart or Uber).

With providers like digital insurance company Breeze, you can receive benefit payments during an injury, health emergency, or even COVID-19 infection for up to 10 years, paying around $45/month (depending on your health history, salary, and specific policy).

Although requirements vary by insurer, Breeze and other insurers generally have these requirements to qualify for disability insurance:

  • Work at least 30 hours a week
  • Earn at least $14,000 a year
  • Prove income/employment information for the past 12 months

Tip: If you lock in disability insurance early in your career, the long-term rates will be more affordable, based on a lower income. Contact Breeze at (402) 256-5230 to speak with a disability insurance expert.


3. Purchase $1 million life insurance from Bestow starting at $8 a month.

With Bestow, you can pay as little as $8 a month for up to $1 million in coverage for your family. Not happy with your policy? You can change or cancel your plan at any time.

The best part is that you can do it all online in five minutes. So, if you’re under the age of 54 and want a life insurance quote minus the medical exam and sales calls, get a free quote from Bestow.


4. Start investing in big-time stocks with as little as $1 with Robinhood.

The thought of dumping hundreds or thousands of dollars into the stock market right now seems scary, but with Robinhood, I’m able to ease into investments while making actual money.

Robinhood just introduced fractional shares, meaning I can put as little as $1 toward an expensive stock, like Apple, Disney, or Amazon, instead of spending hundreds for one share.


5. Download Paribus to get cash back when there’s a price drop on things you’ve bought.

Most retailers offer a price adjustment period, but I doubt you have time to track prices on items you buy to request cash back when there’s a price drop.

Paribus has your back. They will monitor your online purchases at merchants they monitor and alert you when items go on sale to help you get cash back. And it’s totally free.


UP NEXT: What Should You Do with $1,000? Here Are 7 Ways to Invest It

Heather with money in her hand and smiling at the camera.

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