We know: disaster planning is not high on the list of things we all want to do. But in the wake of disasters like Hurricane Irma and Harvey, or the wildfires out West, disaster planning should be top of mind for all of us.
Too often natural disasters strike and serve as reminders that it’s important for both individuals and businesses to protect themselves against the potential financial consequences of such events. Disaster planning doesn’t have to hard. Organization is really the key.
Here are some simple, smart steps we recommend to ensure that your financial security isn’t at risk during or after a disaster:
- Making electronic backups of important records, including your insurance policies, tax returns, bank and credit card account information, and vital records. (That’s your birth certificate, social security cards, passports, or marriage license.)
- It is critical that you store this backup in a separate location that will be easy to access if your area suffers damage. You can store it using a secure online system like Carbonite, or keep a USB flash drive in a “go” bag to take with you out of harms way.
- You should also take the time to take pictures or videos of your home or business and store them separately in case you need to make an insurance claim.
If you run a business, you must consider how you will get up and running again after a disaster. It’s a good idea to develop contingency plans that will enable employees to work from home or elsewhere if your location is damaged or inaccessible. And then communicate your plan to your team so everyone is prepared.
Both businesses and families should consider using phone trees or other methods to maintain contact in an emergency. And then you’ll want to make a note on your calendar to review your contact and contingency plans every year to be sure they are up to date.
Want further advice on protecting your family’s or business’s financial well-being in case of a disaster? We can help. Contact us today with all your financial questions. And cheers to the end of hurricane season!