Life is good. The kids are healthy. The family is happy. You finally feel like you’re somewhat ahead of the game financially. Just when you think things couldn’t be going better, BOOM! A totally unforeseen expense pops up and you have to figure out how to pay for it in a pinch.
Saving some money every month – even a small amount – start or contribute to an emergency fund is a great way to be better prepared for these expenses. Think insurance deductibles, the cost of repairs that aren’t covered, and other not-so-cheap surprises life can throw your way without notice, like these:
- Drip, drip, drip! That water stain on the kitchen ceiling just got too big to ignore and now, the plumbers have confirmed your biggest fear. It’s more than just a caulk and grout job. The second-floor bathroom has sprung a leak and needs a major overhaul.
- Timber! The pine tree that has been leaning precariously toward your house finally fell. Even if it missed your roof and your cars (phew), chopping and disposing of a tree can be rather costly.
- Crunch! Luckily, no one’s hurt, but you (or more likely, your teenage son) put the car into drive rather than reverse, slamming into the garage door. The car was unharmed, but the garage door is doomed.
- Surprise! Just when you gave away the crib…And congratulations! It’s twins.
- What’s that smell? The sewer line has backed up, and guess what? You learn that snaking it – or worse, replacing it – is your responsibility, not the township’s.
- Where is that water coming from? Hot water heaters break at the most inopportune times, usually without warning. So now not only do you need a new unit, but you have to clean up a flooded basement, too.
- And I just paid my final car payment! Cars don’t care. The transmission will go, the brakes will squeal, the exhaust system will fail – whenever they’re good and ready. Which is usually when you can least afford it.
- It’s 90 degrees outside! And 90 degrees inside. All because the air conditioner has decided to go on vacation right in the middle of the summer.
- Whose been chewing on my house? You saw that little winged thing fluttering around your wooden windows last spring, but when you saw the swarm, you knew for sure. Termites.
- I do! I do like the Caribbean. I do like vacations. I do. I really
do. But your sister’s destination wedding is way more than your family can afford.
- Jump, Fido! When Fido jumps off the deck in pursuit of a squirrel and ends up with knee surgery. (Ouch, on all counts.)
- What’s cookin’? Not your turkey, that’s for sure.Two days before hosting Thanksgiving for 27 people, your ancient oven kicks the bucket.
Wondering how to start your own emergency fund? Allstate has tips that can help you save.