Life doesn’t always go as planned. Sometimes the unexpected happens. What if there is no way around it? How are you going to address the financial burden that often accompanies surprise issues?
An emergency fund is your answer! Single or married, young or old – an extra stash of cash is so important when you need help getting out of some of life’s unexpected whirlwinds.
So, what is an emergency fund?
An emergency fund is money that you store away in an easy and accessible place incase of unexpected financial crisis. This money is under high security! It is not to be used for that cute new outfit that we need for this weekend or those new shoes that are to die for! Your emergency fund is your blanket to fall back on when the unexpected happens.
What could you possibly need an emergency fund for?
The six main reasons that I have an emergency fund:
- Loss of Job– Unexpected job loss can put you in a really difficult situation. How long will it take to secure another job? Those bills are piling up! It’s hard to think about before you are in that situation, but it becomes difficult to put up those payments when you don’t have a constant source of income. This is where your emergency fund can come in!
- Health Care– You’re young and healthy, but hey, everyone gets sick sometime! What happens if you need to take a trip to the emergency room? Does your health insurance cover all of the cost? How much is your co-pay/ deductible? Many of us have never had to deal with hospital visits, but you aren’t going to be happy shelling out money for health care when you need to cover your weekly necessities. This is where your emergency fund can come in!
- Health Care for Your Pet– If you have a pet, we all know how much love and care they need! I pay more attention to my pup’s needs than my own! Besides regular check ups and food that he needs, you never know what could happen!
I have a toy miniature pinscher that I adore. If you have never seen one before, my little guy is quite tiny. Like any dog, he is a lot of work! But his 3 pound stature makes it extra easy for him to get sick or injured. Last fall, my pup got sick – he wasn’t acting like himself and was shaking a lot, broke out with a rash, and bathroom trips were awful. He wasn’t in a stable condition and I knew that right away I needed to take him to the vet. Many tests were needed to diagnose his illness – an x-ray and take home medications added up to a pretty hefty bill. Although I wasn’t working at the time, thankfully I had already started my emergency fund from the summer before! If I didn’t have the money saved up for causes like this my little guy could have gotten so much sicker.
What if you need to put up money for your pet’s vet trip? Would you be able to do that? Just like caring for ourselves, it is very important to get your animal help right away to avoid a more serious situation. This is where your emergency fund can come in!
- Car Repair– A car is so sensitive. Whether it needs a serious repair, or just some new parts, it is hard to put off the taking car to the mechanic for safety reasons – often these visits are expensive! You don’t always want these charges lingering around your credit card and building interest. This is where your emergency fund can come in!
- House Repair– Unexpected house problems always pop up. Whether it’s flooding or a storm, fixing damages will put a dent in your wallet. Your insurance will cover any major costs but most definitely won’t help out with everything. This is where your emergency fund can come in!
- Family Emergencies– A time sensitive illness or an unfortunate passing of a loved one can be an extremely difficult situation. Nobody wants to think about the financial toll that comes with these situations, whether it be a last minute travel ticket or even funds for a funeral. This is exactly why it’s a great idea to have an emergency fund. Being forced to take out a loan or count on credit card may rack up interest and debt, which is not always easy to pay back. This is where your emergency fund can come in!
Having an emergency fund can really boost your confidence and foster a sense of independence. Saving money for situations like this and not having to put yourself in any type of debt or having to worry really takes a huge toll off your back. Start your emergency fund today – I know it can difficult, but you will thank yourself when an unexpected situation arises!
Zara Puskuldjian is a rising Senior at Lynn University and She’s Fit to Lead intern and contributing writer.