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Financial Pro Offers Strategies to Survive Job Loss

Don’t panic, take charge and understand your financial options and alternatives when life throws you a curve ball like a job loss.

That was the essence of the presentation by certified financial planner Lisa Gabriel at the September 29 Jobs Network gathering at NCBiotech. Gabriel also holds a Chartered Financial Consultant designation.

Financial Planner Lisa Gabriel

Gabriel is a frequent speaker on financial topics such as tax-smart investment strategies, legacy planning, and wealth building for women. She also serves on the Durham County Women’s Commission, and teaches at Duke University’s Osher Lifelong Learning Institute.

Some 50 attendees learned financial strategies for surviving job loss from Gabriel, president and CEO of the newly established Durham firm, Pinafore Wealth Counsel.

Following her presentation, she and other volunteers staffed several resource tables during open networking, providing support and advice to job seekers. They included:

  • Mike Komives, career & job search advisor and strategist
  • Chip Wood, Manager Durham Local Office NC Dept. of Commerce Division of Workforce Solutions
  • Mimi Shankin, director of business development at AVANT Group, providing resume advice
  • John Balchunas, assistant director of professional development programs at BTEC, also with resume advice as well as info on short courses and other Triangle resources for retraining opportunities

Gabriel, who has been involved in investments and financial planning for over three decades, gave the participants ways to manage change by integrating facts and figures with a highly compassionate delivery.  Her advice for people who’ve just lost their job includes:

  • Don’t panic. File for unemployment insurance, and make a plan for your severance package, maintaining your health , life and disability insurance and map out your priorities.
  • Find out if you qualify for North Carolina’s little-known, but extremely useful, Foreclosure Prevention Fund that helps people stay in their homes even when they encounter financial problems from job loss, divorce or illness.
  • Create a “survival budget” supported by a variety of possible income sources: severance pay, unemployment benefits, your emergency fund, decreased tax withholding from a working spouse’s income, pay from temp or freelance work, cash value from life insurance, borrowing on home equity and, if you’re 62 or older, drawing Social Security or exploring a reverse mortgage.
  • Some people might be able to collect on loans they’ve made to others, barter for goods and services, sell collateral such as a car or boat, renegotiate terms with creditors and sell things on Ebay.
  • Maintain a healthy lifestyle, get out and volunteer to help others, and seek support from family, friends, tax professionals, financial/credit counselors.

And whether you change careers or land a new job in your profession, take time to celebrate and appreciate it.

View Lisa's slide presentation here.


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