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Thinking of Quitting Your Job? Be Certain You're Prepared


We’ve all been there. Your job can get you down. Everyone has daydreamed about walking out and never looking back. There are things you can do to make the period after quitting your job smoother and more successful. Creating a financial challenge might be worse than suffering through a job you don’t enjoy.


Before quitting, make a plan and be sure all the necessary pieces are in place first.


Consider these items before quitting your job:


1. Make a budget. This is a short-term, no-thrills budget. It includes items like your rent or mortgage, utilities, food, insurance, and car payment. Eliminate all the non-essentials. This is the amount needed each month to survive.


· Look at all of your expenses and determine which are indispensable and which can be eliminated for a while. Then take another look and be sure.


2. Investigate your health insurance options. Medical coverage is expensive. The coverage is expensive because healthcare is so expensive. Having coverage is also the law at this time. There can be expensive tax consequences if you don’t have qualifying coverage.


· Be sure to check out the federal health care website. You might qualify for subsidies you never expected.


3. Roll over your retirement account. Your employer-sponsored account will need to be transferred to an account you can manage yourself. If you’re taking another job with a 401(k) plan, you can have the money transferred to that new account.


· If you’re self-employed, you have many retirement account options available to you. You might find you’re in a better position than you were before your left your job. Your options can vary, depending on whether or not you have employees.


4. Save at least six months of living expenses. If your business idea fails or you can’t find another position quickly, this money will keep you going for at least six months.

5. Have an idea of how you’ll earn money. Six months can go by quicker than you think! Ideally, you’ll have another job lined up if you’re planning to work for someone else again.


· If you’re going to work for yourself, have a detailed plan of how you’re going to generate income. Do you have the resources to put that plan into effect? What is your back up plan? Can you drive your uncle’s fish delivery truck until your business takes off? Would you be willing to work part-time until the situation improves?


6. Get advice. Speak with someone that quit their job and see what advice they would give to others about the experience. You might gain some insight into what lies ahead.

7. Quit gracefully. You might want to let your boss really have it, but this approach often backfires. It’s impossible to know how your actions will affect you in the future. Maybe you and your boss will cross paths again. Perhaps your current company will have a perfect job opening in the future.


· Give at least two weeks’ notice and leave uneventfully. Nothing has ever been gained by upsetting someone.


Are you ready to quit your job? Walking away from your job goes more smoothly if you prepare in advance. Avoid being hasty. Take your time and put all the pieces in place before you walk away from a regular paycheck. You might be frustrated with your current situation, but being unemployed is a substantial risk. Ensure that you’re ready to take the plunge.


-Tiffany M. Vaughn, CPA

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