OnPoint Community Credit Union was started in 1932 by 16 schoolteachers under the name Portland Teachers Credit Union.  They offer the following suggestions to protect one’s finances during this particularly challenging time.

Prioritize expenses and review your budget. Unplanned expenses or a loss of income may necessitate prioritizing which expenses need to be covered first. Once prioritized, update your budget.

Deal with creditors proactively. If you are having difficulty paying your monthly expenses, contact your creditors early for your best chance of working out an agreeable payment plan.

Secure access to digital banking. The ability to physically visit your financial institution may be impaired and wait times to speak to someone on the phone may be longer than expected. Downloading and testing your ability to log into your financial institution’s digital banking app can provide you with another route to handle your banking.

Know your options. See what options are available to you for any loans you have, explore the opportunity to delay mortgage payments, look into home equity lines of credit, find out if $0 minimum payments on credit cards is offered and more.

Protect yourself from scams. Stay up to date on current scams and how to take action if you think you’ve been a victim. Scrutinize emails, texts, calls and social media posts that offer financial relief or promote the sale of cure-all products or limited-time special offers.

Never disclose your online banking credentials or PINs. Beware of “sweetheart scammers” that strike up online relationships and then ask for money.