- What is an emergency fund?
- How much should I have in an emergency fund?
- Steps to building an emergency fund
- Where to keep an emergency fund
- Mistakes to avoid
- The bottom line
What is an emergency fund?
How much should I have in an emergency fund?
Steps to building an emergency fund
Set up a budget so you know how much you can save.
- Write down how much money you bring home each month.
- Add up all of your regular monthly expenses. This includes living expenses such as your mortgage or rent, utilities, groceries, and gas, as well as additional expenses such as your car payment, credit card payments, and entertainment.
- Subtract your expenses from your income. This is your discretionary income, money you have to spend as you want.
Decide how much to put in your emergency savings each month
Use savings tools to boost savings
Stash away any extra cash
Where to keep an emergency fund
High-yield savings accounts
Certificates of deposit
Money market accounts
Online savings accounts
Mistakes to avoid
Spending money when it’s not an emergency
Not replacing withdrawals
Stopping when you reach your initial goal
The bottom line
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