Exactly! I thought if I can pull through and still deal, then surely the rest of us can? I think I have a case of the parental guilts. The air conditioner won't be on CC.. It will be on 0% interest (for 36 months) finance but I just hate the thought of owing more money.. when we could save and pay for it outright. The guy leaves upon finishing installation and we pay. Presto! It's ours. Soooo easy. I mean, the mere thought of the current debts are causing enough stress for me. I thought I had my mind made up, but conversations like the one yesterday always throw me in for a loop.. Back at square one. We will have enough saved by next summer fingers, toes and eyelashes crossed. I have a little bit of money in our EF that I could put towards the air conditioner but it's our EF! This is not an emergency (at least in my mind)!
OK this changes everything in my mind! 36 months is 3 years... 3 years before you have to worry about interest. If you'd have the money by next summer, and can be very disciplined/dedicated, you'd have the card paid off a good 2 years before the 0% expires, so you won't pay any interest. Plus you have an emergency fund, so if for some reason you can't pay off the cc before the 3 years is up, you could use the EF for that & still avoid paying interest.
I got migraines every day last month (not due to heat!) and once they finally stopped I felt a million times better, more productive, clearer thinking, etc.! You don't realize how badly they're affecting you until they go away! So to me this *is* kind of an emergency. Plus if your DH feels it's a necessity you need to consider his feelings too.
Twice I have bought things on 0% loans. One was a car I *needed* to get to work (no public transportation and my old car was no longer safe to drive). I made sure to have the money in savings, and absolute certainty that I could pay it off before it went up to some crazy 20% interest or something. One I paid off within a month or two, and the other in about 6 months. If you are 100% committed to it, all it really could affect is your credit rating, which for me wasn't really an issue since that was exactly the kind of situation I need credit for in the first place. Basically you're just buying yourself more time. In the 6 months I waited to pay off the second 0% loan above, I kept the money in a savings account that was getting 4.5% interest so I actually came out ahead doing it this way!
I do think no debt is ideal, but when you have options that likely won't cost you anything extra, it just doesn't make sense to continue to suffer day after day for a year or more! If you are using medication or seeing the doc etc. for the migraines it is actually going to cost you MORE in the long run to not get the A/C right away!