We were going over the budget not too long ago and trying to find yet more ways to cut back on expenses. At the same time, we decided to take inventory of our accounts.
The last “account” we checked on was the Emergency Cash Stash kept in the house for emergencies. I’ve always recommended keeping a some cash in the house in case the ATMs suddenly become unavailable due to any of the following reasons:
- power outage
- your checking account gets hacked and is disabled
- your debit card gets lost or stolen and the bank is closed
- natural disaster such as hurricane, tornado, earthquake etc.
- banks declare a “bank holiday”
Regardless of the situation, a cash stash is an essential part of any emergency plan.
Imagine my surprise when I checked what was in the cash stash and found $47.00.
This was well below what we had originally agreed upon to keep around for emergencies. See Can a Bank Glitch Ruin Your Weekend). I recalled we “borrowed” from the fund when a few emergencies came up and needed quick cash to pay for unforeseen expenses. I had intended to replace it, but life gets in the way of your good intentions sometimes. They were all good reasons, but the point was, I had forgotten to go back and replace what was taken out. We’d be kicking ourselves if some emergency happened and discovered we were low on cash!
Here is the plan to quickly replenish it:
- Cutting the budgeted grocery expense in half for the coming week. We’ll be using up what’s in the pantry even if it means eating cereal for dinner (which I actually don’t mind) (+$50)
- Found a few items to sell on E-bay and listing those items today Expected: (+$40)
- Called the home improvement store to see if they would accept an item that did not work out for return even if it was opened. Was pleasantly surprised when I was told they’d accept it with the original receipt. (+$32)
- Mailing in a rebate form that I almost thought was too small to bother with ($3)
We are working on the plan now, and hopefully the fund will be back to pre-depleted levels soon.
If you have built up your cash fund, what other tips were successful for you?