OK, here is the down low on me: I am kind of a crazy person.
I realize that, by the standards of people on the internet, I act fairly sane. I have a 401(k) invested in index funds! I write in complete sentences!
But a number of recent occurrences have caused me to question the state of my mental regime, none more so than my realizing I would literally rather go into debt again than use my emergency fund.
A brief history of my attitude towards emergency funds:
1) The first 35 years of my life, when I’d literally never heard of them.
3) The time when I decided to be reasonable and set a goal of six months of expenses, or $5000.
4) The time when I had $4000 sitting in a bank account and don’t want to use it even for valid emergencies, aka right now.
What brings this up is that within the last couple of months I’ve had what I’d consider two bona fide emergencies: car repairs ($400+) and my broken hard drive ($200+). These haven’t been the kinds of emergencies where you suddenly really need to go on a Hawaiian vacation, or really need an entire new wardrobe. They’re the kind of thing emergency funds were made for. Furthermore, cash flowing them has been really painful to my very tight budget. I fit the car repairs in only by pushing $175 off to this month, which of course left not much room for a sudden $200 fee, especially towards the end of the month after I’d spent a fair amount of my discretionary funds on, well, discretionary things (clothing and gifts for friends, mostly.) I’m pretty much tapped out on non-savings-account cash now. Only the fact that I’ve had a massively good side hustling month in June has allowed me to get everything in there at all.
Despite this situation, I never once considered withdrawing from the e-fund for the car repair. The thought did cross my mind for the computer, only to be met with an immediate NO NO NO reaction from my subconscious. Which is when I realized I would rather carry a credit card balance if I had to, instead of taking $$ out of my e-fund.
I really don’t know where this is coming from, exactly. Trying out different scenarios in my head, and I think one of the problems may be that it’s not full yet and I don’t want to use it until it’s full, because that would delay meeting my goal of having it done by the end of the summer, and I don’t want to do that. I’ve been so looking forward to not having to immediately divert that $500 every month. But being real, the money is the money; it’s going to get spent on the computer no matter what account I take it from.
So I dunno. I guess I have to think more about this, because there’s no point having a big savings account if I’d really prefer to use my credit card instead 🙂