The purpose of Money Talk is to improve readers' financial capability with research-based personal finance information.
Thursday, September 13, 2018
Planning Ahead for a Hurricane
In 2012, it was SuperStorm Sandy in New Jersey, last year it was
Hurricanes Harvey, Irma, and Maria, and today it is Hurricane Florence in
several southeastern states. Each year at this time, hurricanes occur. It is
just a question of how many, where, and when. Those who get through this
experience with the least amount of financial stress often plan ahead. Unlike
tornadoes, hurricanes generally come with up to a week of advance notice. Below
are five tips to prepare to evacuate and cope with resulting losses:
a Grab and Go Box- Include
insurance policies and provider contacts, contact information for family and
friends, a cell phone charger, plastic bags (to protect wallet, phone, etc.),
toiletries, several days of clothes, snack foods, and bottled water. For a
complete list of what to include in a “Grab and Go” box, see https://texashelp.tamu.edu/wp-content/uploads/2016/02/evacuation-grab-box.pdf.
Your Possessions- Take
photos or videos of your most expensive possessions and make a list of these
items with make and model numbers and serial numbers. Store this information
remotely on a flash drive at a remote location or on a cloud server platform
such as Dropbox, iCloud, or OneDrive.
Things to Higher Ground- Examples
include moving a car parked in an area where flooding is predicted and moving personal
possessions in the basement or first floor of a house to a higher level.
Gas and Cash- In the event
that debit and credit card networks go down, have small denomination bills available
to make purchases. Fill the gas tank for your car and a generator before
supplies run low.
Local Resources- Reach out
to the Red Cross for emergency shelter, if needed. If your house is fine but
you will have no power for several days, find a place to go during the day for
heat, food, and internet access. Examples include libraries and restaurants
with wifi (if open) or hospital cafeterias.