I spend the majority of my 20s without an emergency fund. I can now see how unrealistically insane that was, but at the time it just seemed normal. I was living paycheck to paycheck making decent money with decent expenses. I was paying all of my (minimum) debt payments and making it through just fine… or so I thought, until I finally got (and kept) an emergency fund.
Two weeks ago, JHubbs was really sick. He had a root canal and wasn’t given enough antibiotics. By Day 4, his mouth was all huge and swelling on the inside and he was looking sickly as crap.
The story goes on, we doubled the antibiotics, he felt like he had trouble breathing, and we spent most of Thursday night in the Patient First (like a mini-Emergency Room, for those non-USA peeps) to make sure he wasn’t allergic to the medicine. We were tired of the illness, worried about the chest xray, and scared he would stay sick for a while.
So many other times this kind of thing has happened it’s been a what Dave Ramsey calls “An Emergency And…” It was a car emergency AND a money emergency. A health emergency AND a money emergency. And so on, and so on.
But this time (and in December, when we needed new car tires) it was just a health emergency. We took our time and our emergency fund and went to the doctor without a worry.
Apparently you CAN buy that peace of mind!
So… from a friend to a friend. If you don’t have an emergency fund of $1,000+, please consider going through Dave’s Ramsey’s Financial Peace University (and finding a class near you), or reading all those finance articles out there that will help you save up money very quickly.
PS We were bad about saving it and spending it over and over until we took it all out in cash…. now it’s been permanent almost 4 months! If you, too, have trouble with permanent savings, taking out a small emergency fund in cash might help you be more consistent.