Have you seen how crazy the weather has been this year?
Doing just a little preparation in advance for bad weather can really save you a lot of trouble, money and headaches should something happen that affects you or your family.
We’ve seen some pretty crazy weather so far this year in the United States with record snowfalls, ice storms and severe flooding. All this makes me a little concerned about what lies ahead.
We are quickly approaching prime tornado season here in Oklahoma. It runs from about April through August. I lost a home to an F5 tornado back in May 1999 so I know what bad weather can do.
Of course, it isn’t just here in Oklahoma that we have to worry about devastating weather conditions. Forecasters are already saying the 2010 hurricane season could be an active one.
Again, all this points to the need to take some precautions. I’m not advocating that we run for the hills. I’m just suggesting that we all be prudent and wise.
3 Things We Should All Do to Prepare for Bad Weather
“Luck is a crossroad where preparation and opportunity meet.” ~ Anonymous
I hope none of us have the opportunity to use the preparations that I’m suggesting, but if you do and surely some of us will, then you will be counted as one of the lucky ones.
You’ll be thought of as lucky because you’ll have the resources you need to care for your family and to “get by” until better help can arrive.
Here is what I’d suggest you do to prepare for bad weather:
1. Build Yourself an Emergency Kit
I know you’ve heard this guidance before, but have you done it? Take it from someone that has been through a disaster without one, you not only need an emergency kit, you want one. The recommended contents of an emergency kit can not only make your experience a lot more tolerable, it could literally save your life. I will not be caught in the same situation twice. I have two children I’m responsible for now and I will always have a well-stocked emergency kit to depend upon.
2. Get Your Personal Business in Order
Again, from experience, I can tell you that a little preparation makes a bad weather experience a lot easier to handle. I really like the advice offered in 5 Ways To Disaster Proof Your Finances. In particular, I’d emphasize the need to have all your important papers in a safe location that you can access even if you can’t get back to your house. You might need things like your marriage license, insurance policies, passports, banking records, etc. Also, be sure you have an adequate emergency fund that is easily accessible close by. A little money sure makes bad situations go a lot smoother.
3. Review Your Insurance Coverage
My insurance saved me from financial doom when the tornado hit my house. Fortunately, I had a good agent that sold me the the right coverage, but you can’t always count on this. I’d recommend doing a little research on your own to be sure you have the right options in your homeowner and auto insurance. You DO NOT want to find out your insurance was lacking after a loss has occurred. This is an individual responsibility. You can’t blame your agent for bad coverage because it won’t do any good.
Of course, disasters can not only damage your stuff, but they can also do the unthinkable and injure you or your family members. I’d highly recommend checking to be sure you have the right amount and type of life insurance should the worst happen. You do not want to leave your family with a financial crisis on top of everything else. Along the same lines, we all need to have good disability insurance that will pay us should we get hurt and are unable to work for awhile or longer. Life and disability insurance are two types that often get ignored, but they can really save your butt in a crisis.
Please Do Not Ignore These Suggestions
I used to think that bad things would never happen to me. I’ve learned that life will surprise you sometimes. You simply can’t control the weather. Mother Nature is an incredible force that we can’t ignore. A little preparation before a disaster can really take the sting out of it for you. It doesn’t take all that much time, money or energy to prepare, but it pays huge dividends. Please trust me on this one and at least do the bare minimums that I’ve suggested above. You can thank me later!
Photo by howieluvzus