A good financial planner worth his or her salt will tell you two things. Always have a financial reserve equal to six, eight or even twelve months in case of an unforeseen emergency. Unforeseen emergencies can include but are not limited to the sudden death of an income producing family member, a sudden change in employment ie. lost job or even the results of a natural disaster. That same planner will also tell you to always be careful when it comes to biting off more than you can financially (debt) chew. When self sufficiency is out of the question, there's always option 2.