Emergency Fund 101

…because #%$@ happens. It always happens. You may think it won’t. But it will…it most certainly will. 

Take our washing machine, for example. 

On Sunday afternoon, Alan and I spent a few minutes finalizing our November budget. We paid more than $3,000 on our debt, removed a few links from our chain and moved on our merry way.

Then it happened.

In mid- cycle, our washing machine display started blinking F-25.

Ugh. Right back at ya, washing machine. 

After searching multiple appliance blogs, moving our dryer into our kitchen, and opening up the washer, Alan found the problem.

The belt, which makes the machine spin…I think, was broken. The water reservoir was also broken and not draining properly.

We spent about $80 of unbudgeted money for replacement parts- including overnight shipping. Without our starter $1,000 emergency fund,  this expense would have thrown our entire November budget off kilter before the month even really began. 

Side note- While getting debt free, you’ll need a $1,000 emergency fund so you won’t have to rely on a credit card or other kind of loan when something goes array. After you pay off your debt, you’ll need 3-6 months of basic expenses.

Before we began our debt-free journey, a broken machine would have likely resulted in a new washer. And, what the heck, we need the matching dryer. And we’ve been wanting to redo the laundry room for some time now…so let’s 90-days same as cash this bad boy. 

In other words, this could have been a small fortune worth of stupid. 

Thankfully, we can’t afford that. And the washing machine should be back up and running tonight. Fingers crossed!