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March 26, 2019

Greetings Thrifty Friends,

ATV 2018I just read a story which said that 76 percent of Americans are living paycheck-to-paycheck. It is hard to believe that number, but if you consider the way most people think about money it kind of makes sense.

For so long we were told that debt is good, that debt will get us whatever we want. Now, after the housing crash and years of recession, we are being told to get rid of debt as fast as possible.

It may seem counterintuitive, but spending every spare dime on paying off debt is a bad idea. You have to save!

Keep pinchin' those pennies,

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Most experts will tell you that you need six months worth of living expenses in a savings account for emergencies. That is not counting long-term investments like a 401k or IRA.

If you are spooked by a large debt, don't panic and drain all of your savings to knock it down to size. Withdrawing funds is easy, but it's very hard to pay that money back.

When the debt gets paid off, the urgency to replenish your savings usually goes away. It will be very tempting to continue at the same spending pace, which means you could go back into debt again - but this time years of savings will have been wiped out too.