Hello, Murphy!

Dave Ramsey (and the devoted followers on his message boards) often claim that the first step to getting control of your finances is to save for a "baby" emergency fund ($1000). Their reasoning is that, just when you commit to stop using credit cards, Murphy will come visiting, and there will be lots of financial emergencies that pop up - your car breaks down, your furnace goes out, unexpected medical expenses, etc.

Well, I have to say - this is certainly the case with my life right now.

Yesterday I thought I had finally licked the problem with my heat - and paid a relatively small price for a technician to come fix the problem. Total cost: $49.50, and it came straight out of my freedom account for Home Repairs.

Last night I discovered that in fact, the problem was not fixed (something the technician had no way of knowing). Or, to be more accurate, there was a deeper level to the problem than we previously thought.

So, I need to call them again, and quite possibly have a part repaired. Even if they waive the diagnostic fee, I've been told that there isn't a single part in my furnace that wouldn't cost at least $200 to repair.

On top of that, on my way to work this morning, I heard a horrible scraping noise. Apparently, the mud flap on my front passenger side tire has been knocked loose, and now scrapes my brand-new tire (literally - installed a little over a week ago) whenever I'm driving.

I left the car in the parking lot, and will call a mechanic cousin to see if he can come fix the problem, or at least keep the loose flap back so I can drive to a body shop to get it repaired.

I was frustrated - thinking of how this would involve some creative financing to pay for these costs. Then I realized - I've started an emergency fund! Come Friday, it will have $300, which should pay for these repairs or at least make a large dent. It just means I'll have to keep saving.

All of this has got me thinking - it's interesting how financial peace comes about. I thought I would feel more comfortable with just the process of planning for these expenses (via emergency funds and freedom accounts), and there is some peace in that. But I think really, the real peace comes from the first time you have an unexpected expense, and have the funds to pay for it. Not because there's just extra sitting around, but because you planned, as much as possible, for the unexpected. Now that's real peace.

1 comment:

  1. Kristy, would you like to publish this piece in the True Confessions section of www.MoneyPants.com? If you're interested, please contact Komal@MoneyPants.com. Thanks. --Komal


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