I quit my day job recently. It was too much work for far too less pay. It didn’t help that my General Manager was an ardent dictator though. Besides, I was really fed up with the regimented, servile lifestyle of a worker. I knew it wasn’t for me, so I quit.

We probably are in the same shoes right now. You’re wondering how much longer you would last on your savings (by the way, it’s a good thing you saved up and have something to fall back to – big plus!), until you find your footing once more.

Don’t be afraid. It’s a phase that’ll soon pass because nothing lasts forever. Just as you have now realized that even the high paying job you once relied on didn’t.

By now, you must have noticed that the little you saved up have started diminishing very fast and you’re now worried you’ll hit that red zone faster than you anticipated – and you will, if you keep receiving debits with no credits.

I have taken my time to write this post for you if you’re currently unemployed and looking for ways to cut costs while hunting for your next source of livelihood. It will open your eyes to the different ways you can cut costs and manage the little you have while being unemployed.

So read along.


Start living like you’re unemployed

Cutting costs when you're unemployed

Start living your new reality of being unemployed. To do this, you’d have to first accept this new reality. Because acceptance is usually the first step towards solving any problem. Accept that you’re now unemployed and start adjusting your lifestyle to fit this reality. If you’re usually lavish because of the fat check you’re promised at the end of every month, now is the time to put a leash on your status and tastes. Going forward, lavish shouldn’t be a thing in your dictionary.

Learn to differentiate between WANTS and NEEDS

Cutting costs when you're unemployed

To cut costs, you have to table down those things that are your wants and those things that you really do need and then study them. Like, you have to do this, literally. Okay, hypothetically, you know you’ll NEED:

  • Food
  • Housing
  • Clothes
  • Money to transport yourself to a scheduled job interview
  • Money to learn a new skill (which is a move to making more money)
  • Internet subscription to stay updated, etc.

But what you DON’T NEED to spend on are:

  • A gold wristwatch
  • Netflix subscription
  • Partyful nights out with the boys/girls
  • The new Playstation 5
  • Going on new dates every now and then, etc.

I have given you a general idea of what your Wants and Needs list should look like.

Reach out to benevolent relatives

Cutting costs when you're unemployed

Sometimes, you can’t just do it alone. Reach out to those relatives with listening ears and seek their helping hands. I’m by no means one to advocate inconveniencing or depending on others, but dire times require dire measures. Besides, they’re your relatives; who do they expect you to go to if not them?
So go to them. Worst case scenario is they’ll turn you away empty handed. But if you did reach out to those of them with listening ears like I suggested earlier, then you’ll probably have more money with you right now. Sometimes, their help doesn’t have to be monetary; A word or two from them to the right ears can help you land a better job and get back on your feet.

Go on a debt-collection spree

Cutting costs when you're unemployed

Now is the best time to remember all the people you lent money all the while you were working and go on debts collection. Don’t be surprised, some of them might have even been waiting for when you’d ask for your money back before they’d give it to you (people do this a lot). It’s your money, so have the confidence to go ask them for it and make sure to impress on them how desperately you need it.

Put your foot down on friends and family demands

Cutting costs when you're unemployed

Now that you’re unemployed, you need to stop granting every form of monetary demands from friends and family alike. Wear your badge of unemployment with honor and generously show it off to them so they’ll know what the situation is with you currently and not continue making monetary demands you won’t be able to meet. Telling them about your unemployment situation will not only lessen the tension of having to say you don’t have to give them all the time, but also, put you in a position to be helped yourself, if any of them are up to it.

Start job hunting already

Cutting costs when you're unemployed

The only way to stop being unemployed is to get another job. So start looking for another job as soon as possible. The inevitable red zone you dread so much will definitely come if you don’t get a new source of income. So, budget part of the money with you for attending interviews and potential money making seminars.

Learn to make money online

Cut costs when you're unemployed

Making money online is perhaps the simplest way to make money yet. And what is more, most online businesses often generate more money than the usual 9 – 5 job you’ve been searching for. So why not have a go with online money making and learn a skill or two now that you have plenty of time. There are several ways to make money online and with time, I’ll be sharing all my personal online money making tips with you.

Put a leash on your romantic life

Cutting costs when you're unemployed

Believe it or not, romantic relationships require time and money to nurture. It helps if you are faithful to only one partner. You’d burn much more money by going on several different dates and trying to get them all to work. If you’re sticking with just one partner, explain things to them and let them know about your financial situation. That should help reduce the pressure and expectations.

Do it yourself

Cutting costs when you're unemployed

Yep, the good old DIY. You should learn to do certain things yourself. It’s not every time you call a plumber to fix a clogged sink or an electrician to change a burned out light bulb. Their expert services cost money, money you don’t have in excess. So why not check online for easy ways to unclog a sink or change a light bulb. You will find that doing things like that by yourself is not only refreshing, but also very eye opening.

Eat at home

Cutting costs when you're unemployed

To save money, you should really start being your own chef and enjoying what you cook. It has been proven that cooking at home saves much more money than eating out. Another plus side to this, is that you’ll get to feed much better than you would in any restaurants. So roll up those sleeves and get to work in your kitchen, and no, cooking isn’t for women only.

Use public transport

Cutting costs when you're unemployed

If you own a car, using your personal car for transportation probably isn’t the best way if you’re looking to cut costs. Use public transportation to your advantage for traveling longer distances. Walk shorter distances when you have to, your body needs the exercise after all.

Pick up side jobs

Cutting costs when you're unemployed

Side jobs will come in handy when it is proving difficult to get a regular 9 – 5 job. There are several side jobs littered everywhere in the streets that you can work to augment the little money you have with you. It doesn’t even have to be one. Pick as many as you want as long as the working hours don’t clash. Put two and two together, and before you know it, you’ll have more than enough to keep your head above water.

Negotiate reduction in rent

Cutting costs when you're unemployed

By now, you’re probably getting overwhelmed with all the bills and you’ve just remembered your rent is still as expensive as it was when you were still gainfully employed; and now the looming huge bill is getting you all worked up. What you can do about this, however, is to politely ask for a reduction in rent, citing your current unemployment situation as a factor. Also, you should look at negotiating to pay rent in bits – if you previously pay yearly, you should ask to pay monthly or quarterly.

Take a loan

Cutting costs when you're unemployed

This should only be considered as a last resort. You can take a loan if you have good credit history and are running very low on your saved up emergency funds. If you can, try to take loans from institutions that offer the loans on very low interest rates. Even though accruing debts isn’t a very good choice, but it’s the smart choice to make to ensure your survival.

There you have it. You’d be fine if you put these points to practice while keeping the search on for a new source of income.

Remember that you’re not alone in this and don’t dwell too much on the negativity of being unemployed.

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