Financially Preparing for Disaster
Most disasters are short in duration, and although things like food prepping and survival materials can be essential for survival, it is more likely that you are going to need financial remedies for loss of work or restricted access to banks. Depending on the size of the disaster, financial needs will be different, so it is good to diversify your financial preparations.
Cash on Hand
A simple power outage can render your plastic useless, which is why it is always important to keep cash on hand. A couple hundred dollars should do the trick, but if you have larger family, you may want to keep $100 per person. If stores are available, they may run out of change, so make sure you keep small bills. Cash can also be used to buy materials from neighbors.
You should keep your cash in a fireproof and waterproof box along with other essential documents. This includes social security cards, titles to any vehicles or properties, and birth certificates. It may also include important photos. You may also want to invest in a safety deposit box for added security.
Part of emergency planning for almost any kind of disaster is keeping an emergency fund with six to nine months of your expenditures in it. This gives you a lot of breathing room should you have a long-term disaster.
Insurance (home inventory)
Your homeowners insurance will reimburse you for property losses, but not if you don’t know or have any proof of what you had. They are very familiar with fraud, and if you have a lot of high-end items, you better have some receipts, photos, or a home inventory system. Check out Sortly if you’d like some help with your inventory process. You also want to make sure you are properly covered. Many homeowner’s insurance policies do not provide flood coverage, for example, and a separate policy is needed to get this coverage.
Set up Auto-Pay
Lastly, don’t let a disaster ruin your credit. If you are displaced from your home or have damage to your property, you may not have bill paying on your mind. Setting everything up on auto-pay ensures that everything stays up-to-date while you are down-and-out.
Financially Preparing Makes Everything OK.
One of the biggest stressors surrounding all disasters aside from personal injury is financial woes, and if you are financially prepped to handle disasters, you’ll sleep easier at night. It is worth it and will make any potential disaster much less painful.
- Tim Anderberg