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In the past few months, many of us have adjusted to new circumstances related to our money and our homes — whether that meant losing a source of income, beginning to work remotely, or planning a move to a city with a lower cost of living. To help you maintain confidence in your financial future, Bank of America’s Better Money Habits® and Vox partnered to bring you Money Talks: Home Habits, a first-of-its-kind virtual Explainer event that addressed questions about our changing relationships with work, savings, and our homes.
During the event, the panel of personal finance specialists — Laurel Farrer, Ross Mac, Tonya Rapley, Michelle Meyer, and Erin Lichy — and moderator Melissa Bell, Vox.com co-founder and publisher, address topics including the future of WFH, how to manage your savings effectively, and what to consider when buying or renting a home right now.
Watch the full segments from the virtual panel below, and read on for the three most important takeaways.
Working From Home
Remote work strategist Laurel Farrer and financial educator and musical artist Ross Mac kicked off Money Talks: Home Habits with a discussion about the future of remote work, and how it impacts the lives and finances of those who are able to work from home. However, Mac noted that most people across the US are not able to work from home — including a disproportionate number of Black and Latinx/Hispanic Americans. Farrer and Mac also discussed how to be successful and productive when conducting remote work, how to navigate newfound savings due to a lack of commuting expenses, and the difficulties of working from home as a parent. The bottom line? “Remote work, like it or not, is part of the new normal,” Farrer said.
For more working from home guidance, check out Better Money Habits: Reworking your at-home budget.
Saving When Home
Financial educator and My Fab Finance founder Tonya Rapley shared advice on how to reprioritize personal finance goals right now, whether you’ve experienced a loss in income or are saving on normal expenses, such as transportation or dining out. Rapley also conducted one-on-one counseling sessions with two audience members dealing with their own unique financial circumstances — one who asked if it was a good time to splurge on big purchases while saving money on other expenses, and another who was laid off earlier this year. “It’s OK to alter your plans and change your expectations of what was expected for you this year,” Rapley said, “and just realize that you’re not alone.”
To learn more about saving when home, check out Better Money Habits: Ways to save on your monthly bills.
Rethinking Home Options
Money Talks: Home Habits concluded with panelists Michelle Meyer, Head of U.S. Economics at BofA Global Research, and Erin Lichy, a New York City real estate agent and entrepreneur, discussing our new relationship with our homes, which have become workplaces, childcare centers, and so much more. Meyer and Lichy addressed topics including the housing market, mortgages, and what to consider when renting or buying — though they added that housing decisions ultimately come down to an individual’s unique circumstances and desires. “It’s where you rest your head at night; it’s where you build your family and your home,” Meyer said. “It’s a very personal decision.”
To learn more about our home options, check out Better Money Habits: Renting vs. buying.
The views expressed are those of the speaker(s) only, as of August 6, 2020 and are subject to change. This information is presented for educational purposes only and should not be construed as investment or tax advice or an offer for a retail financial product or service.
To help make sense of our changing relationship with work, money, and home, learn more through Better Money Habits' financial education, tools, and resources.