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While Suze used to say six months was enough in your emergency savings, circumstances have forced her to change her mind and adopt an eight-month rule. "In today's economy, if you lose your job, it's going to take you eight months to a year to get another one," she says. "The reason all these people are in trouble with their homes and they're losing [them is because] they lost their jobs, they can't pay their mortgage payments."

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Suze says she still may approve Megan to be a stay-at-home mom if she is able to put all of her paychecks into a savings account from now until the baby is born in April. "Can she make it right now just on her husband's income alone? ... See what happens. Do your expenses decrease because you don't have as much money to spend? And by the time the baby comes, they'll know for sure if she can afford it or not," Suze says. "If she can't afford it, she'll stay working. If she can, guess what? You're going to have a number of months saved up that add to your [emergency] cushion."
FROM: "Can You Afford That?" with Suze Orman
Published on June 06, 2009