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The (Minimum) Emergency Savings Needed in Every State

·10 min read
ljubaphoto / Getty Images
ljubaphoto / Getty Images

The ever-popular saying, "Expect the unexpected," certainly relates to life's expenses. Having an emergency fund can offer you financial protection when things don't go according to plan. But how much money is enough to really pad your savings? The general rule of thumb is three to six months' worth of living expenses.

Related: 23 Tips To Build Your Emergency Savings
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A recent GOBankingRates' survey found that 58% of Americans have less than $1,000 in savings, which isn't a whole lot when it comes to cost-of-living expenses. The average total annual expenditures per year in the U.S. is a whopping $61,224, according to the 2018 Bureau of Labor Statistics' Consumer Expenditure Survey. Having a rainy day fund is crucial -- if you have no money stowed away, you'll have to finance your emergency with credit cards, and your hard-earned cash will go toward this debt instead of providing a larger cushion for your savings. You can't avoid the unexpected repairs or purchases, but you can certainly prepare for the inevitable.

To determine how much emergency savings are needed in every state, GOBankingRates multiplied the national estimate of average annual expenditures, according to the BLS, by the average cost-of-living index for each state, per the Missouri Economic Research and Information Center. Estimates were calculated to determine how much in savings an individual would need for three, four, five and six months if they wanted to maintain an "average" lifestyle. The states are ranked from the lowest to the highest amount needed in emergency savings.

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Due to cost of living and annual expenditures in the region alone, you can gather that residents in the Northeast would need significantly larger emergency funds if they wanted to keep living comfortably. Meanwhile, those in the South or Midwest likely contribute to emergency funds that are much more manageable in size. Think about an emergency fund as it relates to your spending habits and less about your annual income -- where are you spending the most money? Find out how much you need to save for your emergency fund in every state.

Last updated: Aug. 17, 2021

JayL / Shutterstock.com
JayL / Shutterstock.com

1. Mississippi

  • Total annual expenditures: $51,918

    • Cost-of-living index: 84.8

    • Savings needed

      • 3 months: $12,979

      • 4 months: $17,306

      • 5 months: $21,632

      • 6 months: $25,959

Find Out: 20 Ways To Save Money Fast

Maria_martinez / Shutterstock.com
Maria_martinez / Shutterstock.com

2. Oklahoma

  • Total annual expenditures: $52,959

    • Cost-of-living index: 86.5

    • Savings needed

      • 3 months: $13,240

      • 4 months: $17,653

      • 5 months: $22,066

      • 6 months: $26,479

Psychology: 16 Effective Ways To Trick Yourself Into Saving Money

shuttersv / Shutterstock.com
shuttersv / Shutterstock.com

3. Arkansas

  • Total annual expenditures: $53,326

    • Cost-of-living index: 87.1

    • Savings needed

      • 3 months: $13,332

      • 4 months: $17,775

      • 5 months: $22,219

      • 6 months: $26,663

Learn: Why You Should Start Saving Now for 2022

Sean Pavone / Getty Images/iStockphoto
Sean Pavone / Getty Images/iStockphoto

4. New Mexico

  • Total annual expenditures: $54,000

    • Cost-of-living index: 88.2

    • Savings needed

      • 3 months: $13,500

      • 4 months: $18,000

      • 5 months: $22,500

      • 6 months: $27,000

ecliptic blue / Shutterstock.com
ecliptic blue / Shutterstock.com

5. Kansas

  • Total annual expenditures: $54,183

    • Cost-of-living index: 88.5

    • Savings needed

      • 3 months: $13,546

      • 4 months: $18,061

      • 5 months: $22,576

      • 6 months: $27,092

APN Photography / Shutterstock.com
APN Photography / Shutterstock.com

6. Missouri

  • Total annual expenditures: $54,183

    • Cost-of-living index: 88.5

    • Savings needed

      • 3 months: $13,546

      • 4 months: $18,061

      • 5 months: $22,576

      • 6 months: $27,092

benedek / Getty Images
benedek / Getty Images

7. Tennessee

  • Total annual expenditures: $54,244

    • Cost-of-living index: 88.6

    • Savings needed

      • 3 months: $13,561

      • 4 months: $18,081

      • 5 months: $22,602

      • 6 months: $27,122

Ritu Manoj Jethani / Shutterstock.com
Ritu Manoj Jethani / Shutterstock.com

8. Alabama

  • Total annual expenditures: $54,612

    • Cost-of-living index: 89.2

    • Savings needed

      • 3 months: $13,653

      • 4 months: $18,204

      • 5 months: $22,755

      • 6 months: $27,306

Conchi Martinez / Shutterstock.com
Conchi Martinez / Shutterstock.com

9. Georgia

  • Total annual expenditures: $54,612

    • Cost-of-living index: 89.2

    • Savings needed

      • 3 months: $13,653

      • 4 months: $18,204

      • 5 months: $22,755

      • 6 months: $27,306

espiegle / Getty Images/iStockphoto
espiegle / Getty Images/iStockphoto

10. Michigan

  • Total annual expenditures: $54,979

    • Cost-of-living index: 89.8

    • Savings needed

      • 3 months: $13,745

      • 4 months: $18,326

      • 5 months: $22,908

      • 6 months: $27,490

Sean Pavone / Getty Images/iStockphoto
Sean Pavone / Getty Images/iStockphoto

11. Indiana

  • Total annual expenditures: $55,653

    • Cost-of-living index: 90.9

    • Savings needed

      • 3 months: $13,913

      • 4 months: $18,551

      • 5 months: $23,189

      • 6 months: $27,826

Sean Pavone / Getty Images/iStockphoto
Sean Pavone / Getty Images/iStockphoto

12. West Virginia

  • Total annual expenditures: $55,653

    • Cost-of-living index: 90.9

    • Savings needed

      • 3 months: $13,913

      • 4 months: $18,551

      • 5 months: $23,189

      • 6 months: $27,826

See: 23 Tips To Build Your Emergency Fund

Shots by Natalie / Shutterstock.com
Shots by Natalie / Shutterstock.com

13. Nebraska

  • Total annual expenditures: $56,081

    • Cost-of-living index: 91.6

    • Savings needed

      • 3 months: $14,020

      • 4 months: $18,694

      • 5 months: $23,367

      • 6 months: $28,041

Ron and Patty Thomas / Getty Images/iStockphoto
Ron and Patty Thomas / Getty Images/iStockphoto

14. Texas

  • Total annual expenditures: $56,265

    • Cost-of-living index: 91.9

    • Savings needed

      • 3 months: $14,066

      • 4 months: $18,755

      • 5 months: $23,444

      • 6 months: $28,132

pabradyphoto / Getty Images/iStockphoto
pabradyphoto / Getty Images/iStockphoto

15. Iowa

  • Total annual expenditures: $56,265

    • Cost-of-living index: 91.9

    • Savings needed

      • 3 months: $14,066

      • 4 months: $18,755

      • 5 months: $23,444

      • 6 months: $28,132

aceshot / Getty Images/iStockphoto
aceshot / Getty Images/iStockphoto

16. Ohio

  • Total annual expenditures: $56,816

    • Cost-of-living index: 92.8

    • Savings needed

      • 3 months: $14,204

      • 4 months: $18,939

      • 5 months: $23,673

      • 6 months: $28,408

SeanPavonePhoto / Getty Images
SeanPavonePhoto / Getty Images

17. Louisiana

  • Total annual expenditures: $57,000

    • Cost-of-living index: 93.1

    • Savings needed

      • 3 months: $14,250

      • 4 months: $19,000

      • 5 months: $23,750

      • 6 months: $28,500

hstiver / Getty Images/iStockphoto
hstiver / Getty Images/iStockphoto

18. Kentucky

  • Total annual expenditures: $57,000

    • Cost-of-living index: 93.1

    • Savings needed

      • 3 months: $14,250

      • 4 months: $19,000

      • 5 months: $23,750

      • 6 months: $28,500

Sam Strickler / Shutterstock.com
Sam Strickler / Shutterstock.com

19. Idaho

  • Total annual expenditures: $57,122

    • Cost-of-living index: 93.3

    • Savings needed

      • 3 months: $14,280

      • 4 months: $19,041

      • 5 months: $23,801

      • 6 months: $28,561

Mlenny / Getty Images
Mlenny / Getty Images

20. Illinois

  • Total annual expenditures: $58,102

    • Cost-of-living index: 94.9

    • Savings needed

      • 3 months: $14,525

      • 4 months: $19,367

      • 5 months: $24,209

      • 6 months: $29,051

Sean Pavone / Getty Images/iStockphoto
Sean Pavone / Getty Images/iStockphoto

21. North Carolina

  • Total annual expenditures: $58,163

    • Cost-of-living index: 95.0

    • Savings needed

      • 3 months: $14,541

      • 4 months: $19,388

      • 5 months: $24,235

      • 6 months: $29,081

f11photo / Getty Images/iStockphoto
f11photo / Getty Images/iStockphoto

22. Wisconsin

  • Total annual expenditures: $59,020

    • Cost-of-living index: 96.4

    • Savings needed

      • 3 months: $14,755

      • 4 months: $19,673

      • 5 months: $24,592

      • 6 months: $29,510

Watch Out: 7 Major Emergencies That Could Bankrupt You

f11photo / Shutterstock.com
f11photo / Shutterstock.com

23. South Carolina

  • Total annual expenditures: $59,081

    • Cost-of-living index: 96.5

    • Savings needed

      • 3 months: $14,770

      • 4 months: $19,694

      • 5 months: $24,617

      • 6 months: $29,541

Sean Pavone / Getty Images/iStockphoto
Sean Pavone / Getty Images/iStockphoto

24. Utah

  • Total annual expenditures: $59,632

    • Cost-of-living index: 97.4

    • Savings needed

      • 3 months: $14,908

      • 4 months: $19,877

      • 5 months: $24,847

      • 6 months: $29,816

YinYang / Getty Images
YinYang / Getty Images

25. North Dakota

  • Total annual expenditures: $59,877

    • Cost-of-living index: 97.8

    • Savings needed

      • 3 months: $14,969

      • 4 months: $19,959

      • 5 months: $24,949

      • 6 months: $29,939

Freer / Shutterstock.com
Freer / Shutterstock.com

26. Florida

  • Total annual expenditures: $60,122

    • Cost-of-living index: 98.2

    • Savings needed

      • 3 months: $15,030

      • 4 months: $20,041

      • 5 months: $25,051

      • 6 months: $30,061

Pgiam / Getty Images/iStockphoto
Pgiam / Getty Images/iStockphoto

27. Arizona

  • Total annual expenditures: $60,979

    • Cost-of-living index: 99.6

    • Savings needed

      • 3 months: $15,245

      • 4 months: $20,326

      • 5 months: $25,408

      • 6 months: $30,490

DenisTangneyJr / Getty Images
DenisTangneyJr / Getty Images

28. South Dakota

  • Total annual expenditures: $61,653

    • Cost-of-living index: 100.7

    • Savings needed

      • 3 months: $15,413

      • 4 months: $20,551

      • 5 months: $25,689

      • 6 months: $30,826

DenisTangneyJr / Getty Images/iStockphoto
DenisTangneyJr / Getty Images/iStockphoto

29. Virginia

  • Total annual expenditures: $62,081

    • Cost-of-living index: 101.4

    • Savings needed

      • 3 months: $15,520

      • 4 months: $20,694

      • 5 months: $25,867

      • 6 months: $31,041

Checubus / Shutterstock.com
Checubus / Shutterstock.com

30. Minnesota

  • Total annual expenditures: $62,142

    • Cost-of-living index: 101.5

    • Savings needed

      • 3 months: $15,536

      • 4 months: $20,714

      • 5 months: $25,893

      • 6 months: $31,071

f11photo / Shutterstock.com
f11photo / Shutterstock.com

31. Wyoming

  • Total annual expenditures: $62,265

    • Cost-of-living index: 101.7

    • Savings needed

      • 3 months: $15,566

      • 4 months: $20,755

      • 5 months: $25,944

      • 6 months: $31,132

Take a Look: How Much Cash You Need Stashed for a National Emergency (Like a Pandemic)

Sean Pavone / Getty Images/iStockphoto
Sean Pavone / Getty Images/iStockphoto

32. Pennsylvania

  • Total annual expenditures: $62,693

    • Cost-of-living index: 102.4

    • Savings needed

      • 3 months: $15,673

      • 4 months: $20,898

      • 5 months: $26,122

      • 6 months: $31,347

Andrew Zarivny / Shutterstock.com
Andrew Zarivny / Shutterstock.com

33. Colorado

  • Total annual expenditures: $64,163

    • Cost-of-living index: 104.8

    • Savings needed

      • 3 months: $16,041

      • 4 months: $21,388

      • 5 months: $26,734

      • 6 months: $32,081

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Shutterstock.com
Shutterstock.com

34. Montana

  • Total annual expenditures: $65,081

    • Cost-of-living index: 106.3

    • Savings needed

      • 3 months: $16,270

      • 4 months: $21,694

      • 5 months: $27,117

      • 6 months: $32,541

Jon Bilous / Shutterstock.com
Jon Bilous / Shutterstock.com

35. Delaware

  • Total annual expenditures: $66,061

    • Cost-of-living index: 107.9

    • Savings needed

      • 3 months: $16,515

      • 4 months: $22,020

      • 5 months: $27,525

      • 6 months: $33,030

Nick Fox / Shutterstock.com
Nick Fox / Shutterstock.com

36. Nevada

  • Total annual expenditures: $66,367

    • Cost-of-living index: 108.4

    • Savings needed

      • 3 months: $16,592

      • 4 months: $22,122

      • 5 months: $27,653

      • 6 months: $33,183

Sean Pavone / Shutterstock.com
Sean Pavone / Shutterstock.com

37. New Hampshire

  • Total annual expenditures: $66,428

    • Cost-of-living index: 108.5

    • Savings needed

      • 3 months: $16,607

      • 4 months: $22,143

      • 5 months: $27,678

      • 6 months: $33,214

Yan Lu / Getty Images/iStockphoto
Yan Lu / Getty Images/iStockphoto

38. Washington

  • Total annual expenditures: $67,408

    • Cost-of-living index: 110.1

    • Savings needed

      • 3 months: $16,852

      • 4 months: $22,469

      • 5 months: $28,087

      • 6 months: $33,704

DenisTangneyJr / Getty Images
DenisTangneyJr / Getty Images

39. Vermont

  • Total annual expenditures: $69,979

    • Cost-of-living index: 114.3

    • Savings needed

      • 3 months: $17,495

      • 4 months: $23,326

      • 5 months: $29,158

      • 6 months: $34,990

DenisTangneyJr / Getty Images
DenisTangneyJr / Getty Images

40. Maine

  • Total annual expenditures: $71,387

    • Cost-of-living index: 116.6

    • Savings needed

      • 3 months: $17,847

      • 4 months: $23,796

      • 5 months: $29,745

      • 6 months: $35,694

SeanPavonePhoto / Getty Images/iStockphoto
SeanPavonePhoto / Getty Images/iStockphoto

41. Rhode Island

  • Total annual expenditures: $72,673

    • Cost-of-living index: 118.7

    • Savings needed

      • 3 months: $18,168

      • 4 months: $24,224

      • 5 months: $30,280

      • 6 months: $36,336

Real Window Creative / Shutterstock.com
Real Window Creative / Shutterstock.com

42. New Jersey

  • Total annual expenditures: $75,734

    • Cost-of-living index: 123.7

    • Savings needed

      • 3 months: $18,934

      • 4 months: $25,245

      • 5 months: $31,556

      • 6 months: $37,867

SeanPavonePhoto / Getty Images/iStockphoto
SeanPavonePhoto / Getty Images/iStockphoto

43. Connecticut

  • Total annual expenditures: $77,448

    • Cost-of-living index: 126.5

    • Savings needed

      • 3 months: $19,362

      • 4 months: $25,816

      • 5 months: $32,270

      • 6 months: $38,724

Sean Pavone / Shutterstock.com
Sean Pavone / Shutterstock.com

44. Maryland

  • Total annual expenditures: $78,122

    • Cost-of-living index: 127.6

    • Savings needed

      • 3 months: $19,530

      • 4 months: $26,041

      • 5 months: $32,551

      • 6 months: $39,061

Roman Sorokin / Shutterstock.com
Roman Sorokin / Shutterstock.com

45. Alaska

  • Total annual expenditures: $78,550

    • Cost-of-living index: 128.3

    • Savings needed

      • 3 months: $19,638

      • 4 months: $26,183

      • 5 months: $32,729

      • 6 months: $39,275

DenisTangneyJr / Getty Images/iStockphoto
DenisTangneyJr / Getty Images/iStockphoto

46. Massachusetts

  • Total annual expenditures: $79,652

    • Cost-of-living index: 130.1

    • Savings needed

      • 3 months: $19,913

      • 4 months: $26,551

      • 5 months: $33,189

      • 6 months: $39,826

Kyle Sprague / Shutterstock.com
Kyle Sprague / Shutterstock.com

47. Oregon

  • Total annual expenditures: $82,040

    • Cost-of-living index: 134.0

    • Savings needed

      • 3 months: $20,510

      • 4 months: $27,347

      • 5 months: $34,183

      • 6 months: $41,020

Eloi_Omella / Getty Images
Eloi_Omella / Getty Images

48. New York

  • Total annual expenditures: $84,061

    • Cost-of-living index: 137.3

    • Savings needed

      • 3 months: $21,015

      • 4 months: $28,020

      • 5 months: $35,025

      • 6 months: $42,030

Alexandre Olive / Shutterstock.com
Alexandre Olive / Shutterstock.com

49. California

  • Total annual expenditures: $84,305

    • Cost-of-living index: 137.7

    • Savings needed

      • 3 months: $21,076

      • 4 months: $28,102

      • 5 months: $35,127

      • 6 months: $42,153

Shutterstock.com
Shutterstock.com

50. Hawaii

  • Total annual expenditures: $117,428

    • Cost of living index: 191.8

    • Savings needed

      • 3 months: $29,357

      • 4 months: $39,143

      • 5 months: $48,928

      • 6 months: $58,714

More From GOBankingRates

Methodology: GOBankingRates defined the minimum emergency savings needed in every state as the amount needed to afford 3-6 months' living expenses. GOBankingRates created estimates of living expenses in every state in two ways: 1) Multiplying the national estimate of average annual expenditures from the Bureau of Labor Statistics' 2018 Consumer Expenditure Survey by the overall 2019 average cost of living index value for each state from the Missouri Economic Research and Information Center. This estimate captures the minimum emergency savings needed in every state to continue living the "average" lifestyle for 3-6 months without cutting any expenses; 2) Selecting only the "necessity" expenses from the 2018 CES's breakdown of annual expenditures and multiplying them by the corresponding category index value from MERIC. Necessities included groceries defined as "food at home" from the CES, housing defined as "shelter," utilities defined as "utilities, fuels and public services," transportation defined as "gasoline, other fuels and motor oil" plus "other vehicle expenses," healthcare and miscellaneous expenses. This estimate captures the minimum emergency savings needed in every state to cover basic expenses for 3-6 months. States were then ranked by their necessary emergency savings, with the state requiring the least amount of money in emergency savings listed as No. 1 and the state requiring the most in emergency savings listed as No. 50. All data was compiled on and up to date as of Feb. 12, 2020.

This article originally appeared on GOBankingRates.com: The (Minimum) Emergency Savings Needed in Every State