Everyone who knows me knows how much I find value in security. After all, times may change, governments may change, feelings may change but currency for the most part remains stable.
I ask this question a lot and everyone I know gets upset 😊If you know that Christmas is coming, why are you always alarmed when Christmas comes? It comes every year at the same time. So, if you know that you are a gift giver and would like to buy presents at Christmas time, maybe just maybe, it would behoove you to set up a Christmas fund.
If you drive a car then you know, that at some time you may need maintenance on the car. Why wait for the car to break down to realize that you need funds? Wouldn’t it be nice if you had a little money tucked away for an EMERGENCY? Is it really an emergency when you knew it was coming all along?
Life is not just one big emergency after the other. It is a series of tests and experiences not emergencies. Your emergency fund is not meant to buy the newest clothing item your heart desires. It is a safeguard against a real financial emergency. Even if you start your emergency fund with a dollar, it’s a dollar in the right direction. This dollar will allow you to start establishing healthy financial habits.
I can’t tell you the amount of times my emergency fund has saved me. It is currently depleted, but I am working on rebuilding it. This is very hard when one is not currently working. Which brings me to my next point. You need to be working or have an income to start saving for an emergency fund. This can be any type of work and does not require you to be some fancy executive at a leading firm. I know people who are not physically capable of working and still have managed to start an emergency fund. It may prove challenging but who doesn’t love a good challenge right?
Benefits of an emergency fund
They provide security and decrease you stress level by allowing you to sleep better at night, knowing that in the event of a true emergency you are financially prepared. I know that many people think it’s silly to live below your means but around here we call it peace of mind 😊
They save you from making bad decisions & can stop you from running into debt because you won’t have to run to the bank, credit card company or other creditors in the event of a financial emergency. This helps in saving you from unscrupulous characters who may see you as easy prey.
Characteristics of a good emergency fund
An emergency fund ideally should be at least 3 to 6 months of your living expenses. So, if your bills are say $4000 monthly, your emergency fund should be $12,000-$24,000.
Who would benefit from an emergency fund?
Anyone with medical issues should have an emergency fund. The cost of medical care has gone up and just seems to keep rising. An emergency fund can assist you in covering a medical emergency.
A homeowner knows that home ownership comes with maintenance and repairs. This is not an emergency. A natural disaster that damages your home is. An emergency fund can assist you.
If you are one income family or just starting a family, it is best to have an increased emergency fund. It gives you a greater cushion should you become unemployed.
If you are self-employed or have a job that doesn’t provide unemployment benefits, you may find benefit to having an emergency fund.
Anyone and everyone who wants the security of knowing that in case of an emergency their basic needs such as food, shelter and clothing will be met.
Where you keep your emergency fund is up to you. All investments are subject to risk but a good money market fund or a high interest savings account seems like a good bet to me. I can’t believe how many people are still keeping money in accounts that barely give them anything. Not recommended, is having it lying around the house because it doesn’t make you money there and is too easily accessible. That’s just too much temptation.