I know, you’ve heard it a hundred times: you need to have at least six months of income saved in an emergency fund. And yes, it’s much easier said than done. However, I’ve seen too many people (including myself) get hit with a major unplanned expense, whether it’s a car or home repair or a medical bill, or an unexpected job loss, accident or illness that’s led to a drastic reduction in income. When these things happen--and they do, more often than you might think--not having a financial safety cushion can make the situation much, much worse. If you’re forced to rely on credit cards, you’ll end up sinking deeper into debt instead of, yes, saving to become rich.