I often see emergency funds with different, fun names in other people’s budgets. I decided that I wanted to embellish my budget with another name for my emergency fund, so I decided to start calling it my “Ace in the hole.” Oddly enough, renaming my emergency fund actually made it more enjoyable to save to it, and I was encouraged to put more and more money into my “Ace in the hole” fund. Keep reading if you’re interested in doing the same!
What is an Emergency Fund?
According to Dave Ramsey and many other financial experts, the most important allocation of your income should be to build a $1,000 emergency fund. Eventually, this fund will grow into 3-6 months expenses, but for now it should have $1,000 at a minimum.
It is highly recommended, however, that you put in one month’s worth of living expenses into it. This includes rent/mortgage, groceries, monthly bills, debt minimums, transportation, healthcare, and any personal expenses.
You can calculate the total amount of these by tracking your expenses and creating a budget. If this calculated amount exceeds $1,000, then that’s how much you should put into it.
Your emergency fund account should be easily accessible (liquid) and only used when you’re in a tough situation. It is not to be used when the pair of shoes you’ve been eyeing goes on sale.
I recommend using a high-yield savings account or a money market account for your emergency fund.
Build up your emergency fund of $1,000 or one months living expenses before you put money in retirement accounts, before you go shopping, and even before you start attacking your debt (still pay off the minimums of course). For a more in depth guide this, read my Spending Roadmap: The Ultimate Guide.
Once your debt is eliminated, put enough money in your emergency fund to cover up to 6 months expenses for.. ya know.. emergencies.
A fund with expenses for an entire year is about as safe as it gets if you want to take it that far.
Read my full Emergency Fund Guide guest post here.
Since I like to make budgeting fun, I didn’t want to call it a boring old “emergency fund“. I wanted to give it a fun name to lighten the mood for when I have to use it.
So, without further ado, here’s my 21 fun names for your emergency fund.
What's Another Name For Your Emergency Fund?
- Rainy Day Fund
- Oh F*** Fund
- Safety Net
- Idiot Insurance
- Baby Step 1 – for you Dave Ramsey fanatics
- Winter is Coming – “You know nothing, Jon Snow”
- Guardian Angel Fund
- Zone Defense – play prevent with your finances
- Crunch-Time Fund
- The Secret Weapon – “Say hello to my little friend”
- Home Base – Build your wealth out from here
- Relief Fund
- My Saving Grace
- Shit Shield
- You dun goofed
- Fresh Start Stash
- Safe Haven Reserves
- Backup Bucket
- Secure the Bag
- Buried Treasure – X marks the spot
- Ace in the Hole – One last trick up your sleeve
Regardless of what you name your emergency fund, giving your budget categories alternate names can help you stay true to your budget, and it makes it more fun.
If you call your emergency fund anything else, leave a comment below, I want to hear your ideas!