Preparing your Finances for Times of Disaster

Fireman hosing down house fire

If you think your household finances are invulnerable to disaster, think again. Just one flood, fire, earthquake or tornado can wipe out a lifetime of savings. This year, make a resolution to secure your finances from unexpected events of nature. Below are five steps everyone can and should take to protect their home and finances.


Emergency Financial First Aid Kit

The Emergency Financial First Aid Kit is a tool for all Americans developed by Operation Hope, Inc, American’s first non-profit social investment bank and a national leader in providing financial literacy and economic empowerment programs. Regardless of our financial assets or our annual income, we all need to have our financial records in order to maintain stability int he event of an emergency. Completing the EFAK can be an important first step!

http://www.operationhope.org/images/uploads/Files/effak2.pdf

Creating a Portable File of Important Documents

Life’s emergency situations require advance preparation and planning. The first step is organizing your financial information. Do you have an appropriate place for filing each document? Have you told anyone else where you keep your vital information? Have you shared your wishes in the event of your death? Are your documents available to “grab and go” in case of evacuation? Many situations require that you take action now to avoid financial problems later.

http://www.ext.colostate.edu/pubs/consumer/09156.html

Debt Management in Tough Times

Debt management involves developing one or more strategies to help a debtor get that debt under control.

 

Should you shop for a lower interest rate on your debt?

• This can be a good option, if it substantially reduces your monthly payments and the refinancing is not too costly. Inquire whether other higher cost debts can be rolled into the lower cost loan.

What if you can’t pay your bills

• Prioritize your debt. Keeping a roof over your head …

Managing Stress in Financial Crisis

Sources of Stress

  • Prices rise but your income stays the same
  • Cut‐backs, layoffs, or other restructuring creates job instability
  • You feel frustration with family members’ spending or debt
  • You have medical, automobile or household expenses that pile up
  • An unexpected event or crisis creates money problems for the family (illness, death, divorce, etc.)

Take Care of Your Body

Try to eat a healthy and balanced diet.

Take time for an enjoyable physical activity to relieve stress.

Get enough sleep. We …