How to Survive Natural or Man Made Disasters Financially
With athe devastation unleashed by Hurricane Sandy, its time to discuss how to financially survive a natural disaster such an earthquake, hurricane, flood, tornado, or forest fire or even a man made major terrorist attack. One will need to make use of all the personal resources at your disposal to get by in hurricane times.
For starters, maintain savings. You might not be able to work for a few days, if a disaster comes to your area. Or your business might be destroyed. Savings will help with this, but they won’t be enough. Lines of credit are important. Don’t carry your credit cards with full balances. You may need to access credit during a disaster, especially if you are unable to get to work or work for awhile.
Aside from maintaining healthy finances, there are other things one should do. Make sure you have homeowner’s or renters insurance. If you’re in an areas likely to flood, make sure you have flood insurance as regular policies that cover hurricanes do not cover water/flooding. It may sound like an oxymoron, but its true.
If at all possible, make sure you leave with all your important identification. This includes driver’s license, social security card, passport, and birth certificate. You may need id for services, or if one’s employer was destroyed, you’ll need at least two forms of i.d. to get a new job.
Insurance may along, though important, may not be enough. One should to apply to FEMA for additional funds. Call 800-621-3362 or go to www.fema.gov to apply. Additional resources, if things like food and clothes are needed on an emergency basis, can be provided by Red Cross, Salvation Army, other charities and churches. Local departments of social services often provide food stamps or other temporary assistance as well. And of course, if your house is destroyed or otherwise ruined, you’ll need a place to stay. Friends and family will often host people in disaster situations for awhile. Red Cross and Salvation Army runs shelters, and FEMA temporarily houses people in hotels. Watch the news, go online, read newspapers for information on the latest forms of assistance. Also, talk to others about your situation, as they may know how to deal with insurance companies and the government. Filing claims for losses can be tricky. The most important thing to do is not to give up.