Your house may not be the only thing left in shambles after the hurricane. In many instances, a hurricane leaves behind more damage to the recovery process than the actual structure destruction. Your finances can also end up awry if you didn’t have plans for them.
The tips below will help you prepare now and save you the added grief that can come from the aftermath of destruction.
Insurance: How well do you know your homeowners insurance policy? Do you know your deductible and what’s actually covered and what’s not? Be familiar with your homeowners policy and make sure your house is covered at it’s worth – especially with today’s fluctuating housing market.
Additional Insurance: If your house is located in an area susceptible to flooding, ask your agent to help you obtain a separate flood policy, which is issued only by the federal government. If you live in an area prone to earthquakes, protect your house with extra
insurance that will cover losses in the event that a shaker causes damages.
Household Inventory: Your personal belongings such as jewelry, furniture and antiques should be documented and kept in a safe place. Photograph or video these items and list their worth.
Organize Important Papers: Keeping papers together are as important as the papers themselves. After a disaster you will want access to documents such as insurance policies and birth certificates. Making extra copies of these types of papers and keeping them at a
relatives’ house is one way to keep them safe. Another way to protect your papers is to put them in a safe deposit box at a bank – but not a local one should a disaster to your home affect the nearby bank as well.
Stash Some Cash: Plan for your cash as you would with your important papers because a disaster aftermath can cause power outages that can result in ATM’s being out of order and some banks being closed.
Call Your Creditors: Credit card companies need to be contacted right away after a disaster hits so they will be aware of how you have been affected. Ask your creditors if you are eligible for any type of deferral of your monthly payments. Also request that any automatic withdrawals be cancelled.
Preparing now is the best prevention for any added stress and turmoil in the event a catastrophe strikes your home. Don’t let your personal finances fall prey to Mother Nature: you are in control.