How to Safeguard Your Financial Life

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Several financial planners would agree that one of the

foremost and important steps that you should take to

protect your financial stability is to set aside funds

as emergency reserve. The concept that you have the

fund for emergency and unexpected events is enough to

help you stay away from using your credit card and

drown yourself in debt.

How to Get Started

Everyone must stash a little extra cash in case of

emergencies. However, how much money should you keep?

Although the topic of exactly how much money is needed

for your emergency fund is open to debate, the minimum

amount should be enough to cover your expenses for

daily living for at least three months. It is also

wiser to save for six months though most financial

planners agree on a full year worth of cash.

Your personal circumstances and what it takes to

provide you with a peace of mind are the elements to

help you determine just how cautious you want to be.

If for instance, you have well-off parents who have

always been supportive and willing to help you in a

financial crisis, an emergency fund for three months

will be sufficient. On the other hand, if you had

reach for you credit card for help and end up paying

15% in interest on the debt, you would be better off

saving enough money for your expenses that would last

for at least six months.

If by any chance you are thinking about where to place

your money, emergency fund, paying off the credit card

debt or funding your 401(k), you can always start with

your credit card debt. Next, you can contribute to

your 401(k). This step is especially useful since you

can later borrow money from your 401(k). However, as

soon as all those are finished, return to your project

of setting up your emergency fund.

If you do not feel like you are required to make your

entire funds this week, you can start like everyone

else. Begin by setting aside a monthly amount, like

for instance, 5% of your paycheck or other amount that

allows you to build one month’s worth of living

expenses over the course of a full year. It is also

advisable and helpful to make this automatic. You can

do this by asking your bank to do an automatic program

for deduction from your checking account to your

savings account.

Additionally, monitor you spending habit each month

and always search for areas that you can develop. If

by any chance you receive a promotion, bonuses, or

other unexpected windfalls, always think about

including them to your emergency fund.

Where to Keep the Cash

Keep your emergency fund somewhere that is both easily

accessible and safe because you might be required to

get the cash in a hurry during emergencies. Remember

not to put your cash in the freezer but do not tie

them up together in stocks whose worth may have

declined by the time you need them.

The best option you have is to open a savings account

or money market account. However, always examine their

offer with regards to the minimum balance, interest

rate and other terms.

By time you think you have saved enough, learn how to

stop. You can now sleep easier and try to start

placing your additional saving into higher-interest

and usually less accessible investments or accounts.

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