The stock market has been bumpy lately, and even though the United States economy continues to grow and add jobs, many people are starting to wonder when the next recession will begin. At 113 months of economic expansion, the United States is experiencing one of the longest expansions in its history. When will the party stop?
Only a genie would be able to predict the next recession, but it still doesn’t stop experts from trying. Regardless, the current expansion will eventually stop and the U.S. will face another recession.
What should we expect with the next recession?
Since it’s been so long since the last recession, here’s a little reminder of what will lie in store:
The stock market will crash.
People heavily invested in the stock market will lose a lot of money, at least on paper. Companies that aren’t healthy will fail.
Massive layoffs and an increase in unemployment.
Companies that don’t fail will begin looking for ways to cut costs. This usually includes downsizing the workforce in a search for efficiencies. Over 10% of the workforce lost their job in the last recession. That means you or someone you know will probably lose their job.
Even those who don’t lose their jobs will face a lot of uncertainty. This uncertainty might be even more stressful than actually losing a job, because they’re constantly living in fear. We humans don’t really like uncertainty.
But we’ve come a long way since 2008.
These apps should help
Back then, we didn’t have access to thousands of apps in our pockets. Now, there are tons of tools that can help each of us weather the next recession. Here are the ones you should consider installing to help:
Real estate app
In many areas, the real estate market will be greatly affected also. Download a real estate app, like Zillow or Trulia, to keep track of home prices and rental rates. This will help with your options if you need to downsize. They’ll also help homeowners who need to rent out a room in order to avoid foreclosure.
You need to take care of yourself when you’re under stress and surrounded by people under stress. There are lots of great apps that will help you keep track of your exercise, and many will nudge you to take action to meet your goals. I like simple apps, like MapMyRun, which will keep track of runs or workouts, letting you track your progress and stay motivated.
In addition to taking care of your body, you need to take care of your mind. There has been an explosion of great meditation apps lately as meditation has grown in popularity. And for good reason, its proven to reduce stress and increase health. I like the Headspace app, and I’ve been meaning to try Kevin Rose’s free meditation app, Oak.
Financial planning apps
There are lots of relevant financial apps out there that you might be tempted to download. Don’t fall for the trap of downloading financial news apps or stock trackers (more on that later). But there are good financial apps to look at. Apps that help you track your income and expenses, like Mint, will give you a great understanding of your immediate financial situation and help you make decisions about how to cut costs or reprioritize spending.
Job search app
With unemployment being so high, there’s a good possibility you or a loved one will lose a job. Are you keeping your resume up to date? Good! And when a job is posted, you need to be the first to know. The competition for every job will be intense. Download a job search app, like Indeed, CareerBuilder, or Glass Door. You can set up alerts in these apps that will email or send you push notifications right when a new job is posted. Many of these apps will even take your resume and help match you to relevant jobs.
Freelance job app
While you’re looking for a job, take advantage of the gig economy. This will help bring in some cash to keep the lights on until you land back on your feet. And who knows, maybe you’ll like working as a contractor! You can easily become a driver for Uber or Lyft. If you have a specific expertise, Upwork and Freelancer are great sites to find freelance work, and have great mobile apps.
Bonus: The Apps You Need To Delete
Will all those great apps on your phone, you should probably delete a few apps that you don’t need. Here’s what I recommend dragging to the waste bin:
There’s nothing you’ll be able to do to reverse a stock market plunge. Having a stock tracker will only tempt you to check your portfolio balance daily. Unless you need the money soon, there’s no reason to do this. You’ll just increase your stress.
Reporters by nature report the past. Only magicians can see the future. During a crisis, there will be tons of commentators trying to explain what is going on and making predictions. Most will be wrong. Don’t waste your time trying to figure out your next step based on financial news.
It’s been a long time since the last recession and a lot has changed. Luckily, we now have access to a lot of great apps on our smartphones that will help with the challenges that come with recession. Good luck!