Not Just Another Emergency Fund Post

Let me start this out by saying, I hate emergency funds. Not because they aren’t useful, but because they are boring as hell. They are the savings equivalent of paying for insurance. And no one wants to save for insurance.

Because I hate emergency funds (and because I’m in debt), I’ve never kept much cash around.

Why would I? I’m in a two income household, I’m a renter, I have car insurance AND a crazy big warranty, I don’t have pets or kids, and I don’t have any existing medical problems. Well, guess what? We all have our thing that could put us in danger of shelling out four figures or more for an emergency. My thing is my husband’s family living overseas.

In January, my mother-in-law died unexpectedly, causing us to buy overseas plane tickets and take three weeks off of work. The problem was, I had basically nothing savings-wise. Know what that means? The plane tickets and all travel expenses went on a credit card (as did some of our life expenses due to the lack of work). Our expenses were crazy high, because grief just isn’t frugal.

While I don’t regret ANY of the spending (because people, THEN money), it has opened my eyes to the importance of an adequate emergency fund.

You may have just about everything going for you, but emergencies don’t give a shit about your plans.

Prepare yourself now, no matter how unlikely you believe it is for an emergency to occur.

Guess what, guys? Dealing with the loss of a loved one is not the time to worry about money. While you can’t insure yourself against heartache and loss, you can have the money in place so you can grieve without finances weighing down on you.

Lessons learned:

1) When shit hits the fan, you best have an umbrella.

2) Don’t ever let something as trivial as money keep you from your loved ones. EVER. You wouldn’t trade your loved ones for cash, don’t prioritize it over them.

3) While I hate putting money in an emergency fund, I need to do so. Paying debt is more attractive, but what’s the point if I’m going to have to finance emergencies anyways?

We all have that thing that could ruin us financially without an emergency fund. What’s yours? Do you have enough in your emergency fund to accommodate it?

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Comments

  1. What a great post! I just recently started an emergency fund because I always thought the same as you, I rent, no kids, mechanic dad. But I have a friend who is a genius with her money and she, along with some other bloggers, made me see the necessity of it! Luckily, I haven’t had to use it yet and am not really sure what my “thing” is yet, but I’m sure it will pop up soon!

  2. Good post! My thing is definitely job loss OR an expensive pet emergency OR massive car repairs. Obviously this means I need a pretty large emergency fund! Closing in on $10,000 this month.

  3. I’m new to your blog, great so far :) I am in the same boat, well my family is not overseas but on the other side of Canada. My ultimate goal is to have $10,000 but my immediate goal is to always have enough to fly home if need be! Great post!

  4. First, let me just say I’m sorry for your loss, it sucks to lose a loved one, period. :(

    My emergency fund reasons are pretty close to what you went through actually. I have a family member in ill health and I am scared one day I will get “the call” and have to fly across the globe on an emergency trip, to the tune of at least $2000 for a plane ticket. It makes me feel better knowing I can up and fly at a moment’s notice if my family needs me.

  5. Sorry to you and your BF for his loss. It’s hard losing a parent, especially when you are young(er). Some stress E-Funds are only for job losses, but I think they are for unexpected things like this too. All the more reason to have a healthy E-Fund. I had to dip into mine when my husband’s income went down recently (it’s variable and he works for himself). I was freaking out because I had to use it, but that’s why it’s there in the first place! BTW, I enjoy your tweets!

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