You may be able to meet your needs and expenses each month, but how would you cope with an emergency or unexpected cost? What if your car breaks down, you lose your job, or face an unexpected bill?
Putting money aside for emergency or unexpected costs isn’t easy, and it’s a challenge for people in many countries in the world. If you are one of them then an emergency or unexpected cost can tip you into financial hardship.
Being prepared for the unexpected, rather than dealing with it only when it arises, is key to your financial wellbeing. Estimates vary throughout the world, but experts recommend building up enough savings to cover at least 3 months of essential expenses, in case of emergency.
According to the Federal Reserve’s report on the Economic Well-Being of U.S. Households, a sizeable percentage of Americans struggle to deal with unexpected costs. Faced with an unexpected expense of $400, 27% would borrow or sell something to pay for it, and 12% would not be able to cover the expense at all.
1 The Role of Mental Accounting in Household Spending and Investing Decisions, Client Psychology, 2018.
HSBC has created the YourMoneyCounts financial wellness program which is presented by HSBC staff to the community in a classroom setting. Participant workbooks covering Budgeting, Credit, and Identity Theft and a budgeting worksheet are found through the YourMoneyCount link above. This program was created in partnership with the national nonprofit Greenpath Financial Wellness, and they provide free individualized support focused on your personal situation and financial wellness.