5 Ways To Stretch Your Coronavirus Stimulus Check and Generate Cash Flow

Millions of Americans will gain another check from the new COVID-19 government funding law.

The relief is aimed to help people and businesses endure the surging COVID-19 pandemic during the next few months. President Trump signed the bill into law Sunday, closing an impasse with Congress after seeking a higher $2,000 payment to individuals.

The new mandate, among other things, will mean $600 in direct payments to Americans and a $300 weekly unemployment bonus. Small businesses will gain new aid, including roughly $284 billion for the Paycheck Protection Program.

Yet, the stimulus payment will be half of the $1,200 individuals received previously and lower than the extra $600 weekly in unemployment benefit in the CARES Act earlier this year.  So the reductions raise the question if the new support will be enough to jump-start the fragile U.S. economy still being hindered by the ongoing pandemic? Some observers believe not, contending more funding will be needed.

Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin stated last week that the $600 second stimulus checks to eligible recipients could be sent out a week after the bill becomes law. People are anxious about the new cash infusion.  About six in 10 Americans report they are hurting financially from the coronavirus, a recent survey by credit reporting agency TransUnion shows.

So what can people do if they need more than the $600 payment or want to generate extra money on their own? Here are some actions they can consider:

Trim credit card debt

Do not be afraid to call credit card companies to ask for lower rates. Remember, lower interest rates make it easier to pay off debt. Another option to lessen credit card debt — and make it disappear more rapidly — is possibly converting your balances into a single debt consolidation loan with lower interest. Check out tips here to potentially get lower interest rates or better bargains on them.

Consider refinancing your mortgage.

With mortgage rates at record lows, refinancing your existing loan perhaps could bring big savings. Mortgage data provider Black Knight reported about 19.4 million U.S. homeowners as of late November could slash their monthly house payments. Mortgage giant Freddie Mac reported that as of Dec 24 the rate on a 30-year fixed-rate mortgage averaged 2.66%, an all-time low.  The rate at the same time last year was 3.74%.

Research your insurance costs

Whether it is a car, home, or life insurance, shop around heavily to see if you can get lower rates. When searching, ask insurers what discounts they provide or if you can get a better deal by bundling rates if they offer such a choice. This site allows you to compare home insurance quotes.

Cut back on spending

Examine where you are paying out money now. For instance, perhaps you can cut the number of times you eat out or order carry out by cooking more for yourself. Another move might be contacting your cable company and see if they offer promotions or incentives to help reduce your bill.

Seek support with student loan debt

Check out these options to see if any can help you avoid or get help paying off student loans. For instance, a rising number of companies are helping employees pay student loans. Check here to see what some companies are doing in this area and to get more details on how this benefit works.