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Preparedness means rebuilding toward a brighter future with emergency savings

September is National Preparedness Month , which is aimed at promoting family and community disaster planning, including financial preparedness. This year, for many Americans who experienced financial challenges as a result of the coronavirus pandemic, preparedness means taking small steps toward rebuilding and resilience.

If you are still struggling financially due to the coronavirus pandemic, you may not be ready to start rebuilding your finances. Visit our webpage to find resources on managing your finances during the pandemic, including help with your mortgage or rent.

If you are ready to think about your bigger financial picture for the first time in months, what’s the first step?

Consider – or start – your emergency saving fund. As you build it over time, it will help cover unexpected expenses that may come, whether that be a natural disaster, unexpected illness, car trouble, or other financial downfall. It can become an important means for avoiding unwanted debt and help you more quickly realize your dreams. In short, it can become a strong foundation for your financial future.

This recent Start Small, Save Up research brief draws on the Bureau’s Making Ends Meet survey to look at what savings habits can mean for consumers. It looks at the connection between saving and a sense of financial preparedness, well-being, and control and peoples’ experiences related to difficulty paying their bills.

The Bureau has created resources to help you rebuild, recover, and protect your finances. One way to get started is with our emergency savings guide and emergency savings email boot camp. For more tips and tools to help you build emergency savings, see our Start Small, Save Up web page. And learn more about protecting your finances during disasters at our Preparing, recovering and rebuilding after disasters and emergencies web page.

It might seem impossible to save enough to get you and your family through something like a furlough, job loss, or reduced hours. But any amount can make a difference and it’s never too late to start. The more you can save, the better you can weather the worst, and the faster you can recover when it is over.

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