Skip to Content

How to Budget for the Unexpected

It’s so important to try to budget down to the penny. While this may seem almost obsessive, you just never know when an emergency could occur. The occasional unexpected expenses are inevitable. As many people live paycheck to paycheck, budgeting is one of the top priorities. These unexpected expenses can cause a lot of problems, and it can be difficult to get back on your feet after they happen. So how can these expenses be better prepared? These tips will help you budget for unexpected expenses and emergencies. 

Start with an emergency fund

For any household, whether single or family, you must have an emergency fund. These emergency funds should have 3 to 6 months’ worth of expenses at the very minimum. This cushion will help with difficult expenses, so this should be kept in mind every month when you do your budgeting. 

Create a new budget category

While having an emergency fund is essential, it’s best to have an additional budget as well, this could go for miscellaneous items. These could be things such as looking into yahoo finance api for information. It’s best to try to put at least $100 into this when necessary, so when things come up that aren’t an emergency but something that still needs to be addressed this is where this budget money could come in. But also go ahead and ask yourself what exactly should this money go to. 

Expect the unexpected

While it may sound cliché, anything could happen. There could be a surprise bill, a death in the immediate family, the pet needs to see the vet, just expect anything to happen. As long as you plan, you can be ready to take this on. 

Handle unexpected expenses in a different way

If there’s a will, there’s a way. While unexpected expenses can be truly stressful, there can be ways to combat them, you just may need to think outside the box. If you’re in a town or city that has a university, then you could be in luck. Many vocational schools need cars for their student mechanics to work on, so if your car is giving you trouble this could be a solution. Some of these vocational schools will charge little to no money since it will be students working on it. If you or a family member needs dental work done, dental colleges are very welcoming of patients. They’re always in need of patients for their students to practice on. 

Look into what the near future may bring

One way to avoid unexpected expenses would be to get prepared for them. This can help make Christmas shopping a whole lot easier.  Try to look closely at what’s happening in your life, some of these expenses may not be too unexpected. Have you or a family member been feeling a lot of pain consistently lately? Is there a twinge in the teeth? Has the car been sounding weird? Did the car recently pass the 100,000-mile mark? Are kitchen appliances like the fridge not as cold as they once were? Try to notice if any of these sorts of events are occurring, this can help in preventing future emergencies.