debt

8 signs you're flirting with financial ruin

You have a savings rate of zero
You have a savings rate of zero

If you're unable to set aside a small amount of money for savings in your budget, your finances are on unstable footing, says Boucher.

"Savings is an expense, and it's something that should be budgeted for just like any other expense," Boucher says. "What's going to happen is something is going to come along -- an unexpected car repair or a home repair or an interruption in income -- and you're going to be in a very bad place."

He says that while saving may be difficult, not saving puts you at risk of financial hardship. "With no savings, you're really standing on the edge of a cliff," he says.

Blanchard agrees. He says many people rely on credit for their emergency backstop, but credit isn't effective as an emergency savings fund. If banks see you regularly adding abnormally high charges, they'll clamp down on your limit.

In order to be financially healthy, you need to set aside money for unexpected emergencies and for your future retirement, Blanchard says. While an emergency may never come, retirement certainly will, and you'll need to be financially ready.

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