Get ready for winter | Preparedness on a budget

You don’t have to break the budget to prepare for the types of natural disasters that can happen in your area. The following are easy ways to get ready for nature’s events in a thrifty manner.

Create your own personalized list. You may not need everything included in “ready-made” kits and there may be additional items you need based on your personal situation. For example, if you have pets, you may need special items. Don’t forget to have supplies in your car and at work.

Look around your home first for items you can place in your kit using the personalized list you create. You may be surprised how many items you already have around your home that just need to be pulled together.

Budget emergency preparedness items as a “normal” expense. Even $20 a month can go a long way to helping you be ready.

Buy one preparedness item each time you go to the grocery store.

Save by shopping sales. Make use of coupons and shop at stores with camping supplies and used goods.

Test your emergency preparedness kit every 6 months. Only replace and cycle through those items that have a shelf life (such as water, food, batteries).

You may want to test the radio and flashlight at the same time to make sure they are in working order. Use Daylight Savings dates as your preparedness test reminder dates.

Store water in safe containers. You don’t have to buy more expensive bottled water, but make sure any containers you use for water storage are safe and disinfected.

Request preparedness items as gifts. We all receive gift we don’t need or use. What if your friends and family members gave you gifts that could save your life? Don’t forget to protect them by sending preparedness gifts their way, too.

Think ahead. You are more likely to save money if you can take your time with focused and strategic shopping. It’s when everyone is at the store right before a storm hits that you might buy things in urgency. Use a list to avoid duplicating items when you are stressed or panicked.

Trade one night out to fund your family emergency preparedness kit. For example, taking a family of four to the movies can cost upwards of $80-$100. Just one night of sacrifice could fund a family emergency preparedness kit.


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