Americans at all income levels have experienced the challenges of rebuilding their lives after a disaster or emergency. In these stressful circumstances, having access to personal financial, insurance, medical, and other records is crucial for starting the process of recovery quickly and efficiently. Taking the time now to collect and secure these critical records will give you peace of mind and, in the event of an emergency, will ensure that you have the documentation needed to start the recovery process without delay.
- Gather financial and critical personal, household, and medical information.
- Consider saving money in an emergency savings account that could be used in any crisis. Keep a small amount of cash on hand in a safe place. It is important to have small bills on hand because ATM’s and credit cards may not work during a disaster when you need to purchase necessary supplies, fuel or food.
- Obtain property (homeowners or renters), health, and life insurance if you do not have them. Review existing policies for the amount and extent of coverage to ensure that what you have in place is what is required for you and your family for all possible hazards. Homeowners insurance typically does not cover flooding, so you may need to purchase flood insurance from the National Flood Insurance Program.