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If there is a better forum/topic for this question, please let me know...

I'm starting over after a few bad years where I lost all my savings, retirement and home equity. I am left with a nice home that is appreciating, an interest only loan, the potential to make a decent salary and 32K in credit card debt, no other debt. I'm contracting short-term after being out of work for 4 months and getting close to some permanent job offers.

So here's my question. I have a budget all made up for my permanent salary. I want to save money for emergencies but I also need to put massive amounts of money toward the credit card debt (BTW, I have already put this amount in lower interest accounts, snowballing and have actually paid a few cards off completely).

How do you determine percentages to put toward emergencies? And also, should I start contributing to a 401K even if there is no company matching, which paying off this debt?

If I don't save anything, I can pay this debt off in a little less than 2 years, provided I get the salary I'm banking on. But that leaves me with no savings.

Second question... if I do start putting money into an emergency fund, is a bank savings account the best place for this? I have a very small AIM mutual fund left, about 400 in it, I could add to that but it's not as liquid as a bank savings account.

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