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For instance, even if I put every penny I had toward the down payment and closing costs (well, and food), I could still cover a fairly big ticket repair that happens immediately by borrowing from my Roth. (And, at least by my understanding, would only lose out on the small amount of potential gain while the money was withdrawn, and its subsequent gains.) And within 2 or 3 months of closing, I could do it without. And I wouldn't go that close to the edge.

I'm getting the uneasy feeling that you know nothing about Roths, but you "understand" lots, including that they lay golden eggs. You cannot borrow from any kind of IRA. If you take money from an IRA and redeposit it in an IRA within 60 days, that's a rollover. On the 61st day the distribution is a done deal. Please promise me you'll do a little reading up on IRAs in the references I've given you. You need to disabuse yourself of some dangerous misunderstandings.

Or say I were to lose my job the day after closing. Well that'd really suck, but I could last for 10 months or so on what I have in the Roth only.

I realize that it's probably painful to hear someone talking about trashing their IRA like that, but (1) the first scenario would have minimal impact and the second seems extremely unlikely, (2) in some sense it's already an emergency fund in my mind

That pain you feel is me whacking you upside the head with a 2x4. It will continue until I've driven that thought from your mind.

IRAs are retirement accounts, not piggy banks to be raided when you can't live without a Twinkie and have to run down the alley to Paul's Grocery to get a package. I digress. Emergency funds are for emergencies. They are tapped in emergencies and replenished ASAP. I wouldn't buy a house without an e-fund with 6 months' expenses without any income. I'd be more comfortable with 12, but I also understand that you can't delay gratification forever. See "Twinkies," above.

My version of what someone else already said about surprises: Hope for the best, expect the worst.

Rule Your Retirement Home Fool
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