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At Home Essentials on a Budget

young boy in a blue shirt and headphones sits at a computer and writes with a pencil
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Summer is over and the kids are back to school. Any other year back to school would be business as usual. With COVID-19, for most local kids back to school really means buckling down at their kitchen table to attend school virtually. Is your house prepared for you to work from home and have your kids schooling from home? We have a few tips to get set up while on a budget.

Invest in Your Internet

If there’s one new cost we recommend you build in a budget for, it’s quality internet. Video conferencing requires a lot of data and internet speed to function smoothly. If you have more than one child or are also working from home, your internet data can get used up quickly, causing interruptions in service and therefore interruptions in your meetings and classes.

If you have the option, we do recommend increasing your internet speed to compensate for the increased traffic. The money you’re spending will be worth the sanity later.

Getting the Right Technology

Some schools may provide laptops for students to use, however, many do not. If you find you’re in need of additional technology for your kids to take their classes, there’s no need to go all out. There a few ways that you can get the right tech without breaking the bank:

  • Consider buying used. Many local PC shops purchase old computers to refurbish and resell at a lower price point.
  • Get an essentials-only computer. Computers like Chromebooks run on a simplified operating system designed for online activity. You won’t be spending extra money for storage space that won’t get used.
  • Opt for a tablet. Most households already have a tablet of some sort and kids are already familiar with how they work. All you need is a keyboard attachment and they’re all set!

Set Up Your Workspaces

Finding a place in the home for everyone to be able to focus on their own will be key to making it through this new experience. Get creative with what you already have to save money on buying new home office furniture. A tall dresser makes the perfect stand up desk and a kitchen table is a great place for kids to stay close to the snacks. If you do buy anything for your workspace, it should be headphones! They’ll be helpful in keeping everyone focused and quieting the chaos of multiple video conferences.

We’re Here to Help

If you do find yourself needing to invest significantly in an at-home set up, Highlands Community Bank is here to help. We can help you find a short term loan that suits your needs. Visit www.highlandscommunitybank.com or call one of our local branches to set up an appointment.

Just remember, we’re all in this together.

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