Emergencies happen, and there’s no getting around them. However, there are things that we can do to protect ourselves financially. You’re not working as hard as you are to just end up behind the curve, wondering why you can’t retire, or reach other lifestyle goals. Do you want to travel more? Build a business? Or maybe just buy a really awesome car? Financial goals are almost as unique as freckles and snowflakes, and everyone has at least one goal that they would really like to achieve.
Financial protection is about planning, looking ahead, and taking action before the worst happens. Here are a few things to consider if this is important to you:
What does your paperwork situation really look like? We’re not talking about how many papers you have around your home, as everyone has paperwork. We’re actually talking about how organized everything is. Do you have things in proper order, or do you struggle to find the files you need when you need them? If the worst happened, like a fire, would you be able to have backups of your important paperwork to refer back to? Make sure that you don’t just rely on cheap “fireproof” safes, as they don’t always preserve your papers properly. Getting duplicates of important things is critical, and they should be stored in a safe location. Most banks have safety deposit boxes, so it’s not a bad idea to talk to your local bank. You can also scan in all of your documents and store them securely in the cloud, but it would be better to have the originals stored elsewhere.
Take a weekend and gather all of your important financial documents, like your mortgage and birth certificates. It would also be wise to keep any receipts to big ticket items, along with any insurance documents. You can take multiple approaches at the same time, like scanning everything into an online storage cloud, as well as storing important papers at another secure location.
In the event of a fire, you might think that everything is handled. After all, you have insurance, right? If you’re a renter, the landlord will cover the actual dwelling, but it’s up to you to make sure that you have cover for all of your items. The insurance company is going to want to see proof of what you own, which can be difficult after a fire. That’s why it’s a good idea now to review what you own, take pictures of serial numbers, write down important information, and have it stored at another location. If you don’t take these steps, you may have an uphill battle with the insurance company later, and this is even more important if you have high ticket items. Instead of getting the true replacement cost, you may end up having to settle for estimates that really don’t help you in the long run.
Save for Emergencies
Not having proper savings is a problem that affects plenty of people every year, but that doesn’t mean that you have to just leave it to chance. Even looking at small purchases over time can give you insight into your spending. When we sit down with friends trying to figure out how to save money, we look at how much they spend on eating out. That can add up to a lot of money every year, and that’s money that they don’t necessarily need to spend. Sure, it’s not trendy to say so, but you can save money by staying home and eating what’s already in the fridge. Or you can invite friends to come over and everyone can contribute something to eat. That way everyone saves money, and they can focus deeper on their goals.
Do you know who authorities would contact in case of emergency? Do you know how much credit you have? What about what’s in your account right now? The more you understand about your financial situation, the better off you will be in the long run. Take these tips to heart and really review your finances. That will give you the foundation you need to stay protected for a long time to come.