The recent natural disasters that have made the news — the earthquakes of Japan, Chile, India and more — have started getting people talking about a loot of different things. One is the worry about the rise in nuclear power and the things that we’re doing to chase that power as a global society, but there are some subjects that are just as important — like making sure that you and your family really have what it takes to be able to rebuild your lives after a natural disaster.
It’s not like this is something that you don’t have to think about. Even if you’re in the United States, you’ve heard about tornadoes and hurricanes leaving people without homes and food — and let’s not even go into what people have had to do after earthquakes in the US — can it really get bad!
A lot of people think that they will be safe, or that the government will instantly swoop in to do what’s right. That’s something that the people in New Orleans learned fast would not happen. The government’s reaction was very slow, and it ended up making things very difficult for the residents — even to this day, the people of New Orleans haven’t quite rebuilt themselves into the way they were before the big storm erupted. It’s just a matter of going about things in a more systematic way.
Once you make the decision to plan for your family, you might be bombarded by another serious of thoughts. Just how will you handle things if your family were to suddenly have to run and fend for themselves? What would you need to have in place?
There are a few things you can think about, but one thing you need to start planning for is an emergency fund. Now, your emergency fund should be divided into two parts. You should have the part that stays in the bank, and you should also have the bank that is liquid — in cash if you can help it. The reason why you will want to have cash is because in the case of a natural disaster there’s not going to be any power. This means that you will be stuck using cash, which can really make things difficult. It’s better all around if you start thinking in terms of cash before anything else. It’s also easier to hide cash in little places if you were suddenly needing to get on the move to escape a natural disaster, instead of trying to line up at the bank — by the time you get your money out, the storm could already be bearing down on top of you — no one really wants to think about that type of instance!
It’s a scary thought to have to build an emergency fund — after all, how do you really know that you’ve built up enough? You know because you can cover the basics for your family for at least three to six months. That’s considered light by some, but we make the argument that if you’re only thinking about trying to rebuild until things get better, short term is really your goal. By the time that you finish beating yourself up about not having enough money for a long term play, you’re running out of time. If time is truly of the essence, you will want to think about short term gains rather than long term gains that may or may not come.
If you’re thinking about raw survival products, you will need to make sure that you’re buying food, medical supplies (like first aid kits), and food storage containers that are truly food grade safe. Contrary to popular belief, you can’t just put food into any plastic bucket — you will end up making your family very sick this way. It’s better to make sure that you will be able to have exactly what you need to take care of your family.
It can be hard to save up for an emergency fund, but you might want to take a look at your budget. No matter how well we think we’re doing in life, there are always services that we can cut down or even eliminate completely. If you and your family like to go out a lot, you might want to drop your entertainment budget for a while — at least until you can build a fund large enough to pay for the food and supplies you would need to get through stormier times.
Overall, you have the power to create an amazing emergency fund that you and your family can truly be proud of — get started today!