Whether it's a broken water heater, an unexpected medical bill or a car wreck, emergencies happen to everyone. But a startling number of Americans are unprepared to cope with them, money-wise.
According to Bankrate's latest financial security index survey, 34 percent of American households experienced a major unexpected expense over the past year. However, only 39 percent of survey respondents said they would be able to cover a $1,000 setback using their savings.
"While tapping savings to pay off an emergency was the most common response, more than a third of Americans would sink into one type of debt or another, potentially harming their financial security," Bankrate says in the report.