Building Your Emergency Kit

This past year and a half have taught us the importance of preparedness, especially when it comes to having supplies on hand. Remember The Great Toilet Paper Rush of 2020? Yeah… As the world slowly begins to recover and reopen, it may be time to restock on vitals and reevaluate what an emergency kit means for your and your family.

The Necessities

Anyone versed in even the bare minimum of emergency preparedness will know that you need a minimum of 3 days supplies for each family member, pets included. This means having food, water, clothing, and medications rationed for 3 days prepped in your car. In the case of the global pandemic, 3 days was a drop in the bucket. Some experts would advise having 2 weeks of supplies set aside, others would caution that 3-6 months is the bare minimum. The same goes for your finances and savings. If you struggle to save, having supplies on hand can be easier than having cash readily available to make purchases. Stock up slowly, by adding just a few extra cans of food and a bag of meat for the freezer to your weekly shopping trip can mean the world when times get lean. For medications, you can ask your provider for an extra emergency prescription, so you won’t need to cut back on your daily meds to save up. Your provider may write for one month or for 3, depending on the type of medication and its shelf life.

Cash

If you have elderly parents or grandparents, they may have told you stories of their parents hiding money and valuables in the mattress after The Great Depression or after WW2. These habits stem from living through desperate times. This last year greatly mirrors the desperation of a hundred years ago. It would be wise of us to learn from our ancestors and begin squirrelling away money for those rainy days, so that we are not caught off-guard should the worst happen. Job loss, injury, accident, Act of God, any of those things can happen at any time. By having savings, both in cash and in the bank, you can breathe a bit easier knowing you can pull through at least for a while.

The Plan

Having a plan for emergencies is key to making it out safely. This is true for natural disasters, accidents, and financial situations! Having backups, making copies of your important information, ensuring your spouse knows the important passwords for accounts, are all part of having a plan. How involved your plan gets is up to you. If you’re the organized type, create a family emergency binder with all the important stuff in one place. If you’re techy, compile a spreadsheet and let your partner know where to locate it on your computer.

No matter your socio-economic status, having an emergency kit can be key to living comfortably when life throws you a curve ball. Start taking steps today to make sure your family can get by just a little more comfortable!

Join us next week for more great ideas and information!