There is always a way! (Find out more ways here)

By the way, if you’re following the plan I’ve been setting forth in this series of posts, you’ve already started doing a written budget.  My experience has been that when you started doing that, you pay more attention to what you’re spending, and inevitably you find at least a couple hundred dollars every month you didn’t know you had.  You can use that as well.

Just What is an Emergency?

Once you get your small emergency fund together, you should really think about what defines a real emergency.

An emergency is NOT a broken iPad, a busted TV, or the fact that the cute pair of shoes you’ve been craving just got marked down by 50%.  An emergency is not a scope for your hunting rifle because deer season starts next week, and it’s not a new game system because the old one finally died.

An emergency happens when little Johnny breaks his arm, or you have no hot water, the basement flooded, or the roof is leaking.

It’s not used to purchase something you failed make allowance for in your budget.

While you’re trying to get out of debt, $1,000 dollars will cover most run of the mill emergencies.

What if I Have to Use My Emergency Fund?

If you have an emergency while you are getting out of debt and you have to dip into the funds, your first priority should be to pay back your emergency fund.  If you’re in the process of paying off debt, then pay only the minimum payments on the debt until your emergency fund is replenished.  That way you continue to be self insured and you remain confident that a typical emergency can be easily taken care of.

What’s the Point of an Emergency Fund?

The point of all of this is that you want to be proactive to eliminate any problems that will derail you from getting out of debt and achieving financial freedom.

When you have a solid plan in place, and $1,000 set aside for those typical emergencies that WILL come, you won’t have to resort to using credit cards like so many people do when they have no plan.

So remember:  Stay mad, stay naked and keep reading these posts! When you follow the steps outlined here, you WILL become debt free!

And don’t forget to bring your friends along for the ride.  Share this with them on your social networks using the buttons provided.

In the next post I’ll show you the next step in the process that will allow you to pay off your debt faster than you ever thought you could!

Did you ever have an emergency that put you in a bind financially because you weren’t prepared?  Tell me about it in the comments.

Article originally published on Celebrating Financial Freedom. Used with permission.

Dr. Jason Cabler is a Christian personal finance blogger, author, and speaker.  He teaches how to get out of debt and live a debt free lifestyle through his Celebrating Financial Freedom blog and self study course.  His book How to Budget- The Quick and Easy Guide to Making a Budget That Works is now available.  He can be reached for interviews or  speaking engagements by email (jasoncabler@cfinancialfreedom.com) and can be found on Twitter, Facebook, and Google +.

Publication date: January 16, 2013