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Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Executive Office of the President, NSRB, Civil...

Survival is about saving

To be prepared for any likely emergency, the first and foremost thing you’re going to need is cash.
Saving your cash and getting on solid financial ground is the foundation of being prepared. Yet, I see so-called survivalists worrying about how to SPEND any few dollars they’ve managed to save. They want to spend it on guns usually, to satisfy their movie-fueled fantasies. YOU want to have the cash to get away from them if necessary.
In most disaster scenarios, cash can make the difference between surviving and not surviving. Of course, there are always a few scenarios where cash won’t work–but in the majority and most likely ones…having enough is what your life might depend on.
Sheltering in place scenarios
This is a disaster where you need to hunker down in your home until the danger has passed or burnt itself out. These include quarantine in case of disease, societal breakdown, financial collapse, EMP or anything else that will collapse the power grids. If you have money and passports, you might have the option to travel out of the affected area–but not in case of quarantine, martial law with travel restrictions or EMP. These are usually the only scenarios traditional survivalists are prepared to survive. Having cash to stock up on food, security and supplies is important. Food is fairly cheap now as are other supplies. Guns are not, but I don’t see an arsenal would be needed unless your fantasy is to go out and find some black people to shoot like most of the traditional survivalists who imagine most blacks as crazed zombies out to get ‘em. It’s far better to keep a low profile and your stores hidden and unlikely along with a good relationship with your neighbors.
Evacuation scenarios
This is one so-called survivalists aren’t prepared to deal with, but frankly, it’s the most likely. The most they think they can do is to relocate to the boonies. But often the boonies will have to evacuate in case of disaster too. We see it happen all the time now. Some scenarios are wildfires, out of control fires, natural disasters such as hurricanes, earthquakes, super volcanoes, bombs, chemical agents, war, biological agents, martial law and confiscation, etc., etc. They’re not going to be able to carry their guns or survival crap with them if they need to flee.
You need to be prepared to get outta Dodge fast and you’re not going to be able to do it without cash.
You need cash no matter what happens
If you have cash, and DON’T live paycheck to paycheck, burdened with debt, your quality of life is simply better. You don’t have the stress. If you get laid off or fired it’s not a disaster. You can maintain until you get another job or another skill.
Why spend money on things you really don’t need? Vow to simplify your life.
Where can you save?
1) Stop spending on anything not vital to your life
2) Create a budget. Know within a few dollars how much money you need to maintain your lifestyle. Then figure out where you can cut if you need funds to save. The big things to look at are housing, transportation, entertainment, and the money spent on eating out and other unnecessary pastimes.
3) Decide what to do about credit and debt. How much is having credit worth to you? Buying on credit isn’t a good thing. In the event of a disaster, credit won’t be worth anything. However, credit is looked at for many things, including job decisions. This is a personal decision, nobody can make it for you.
You need to make a decision…do you want to put your excess money toward becoming debt free, a worthy goal…or do you want to put your money towards survival preparation, e.g. an emergency fund? If it’s the latter and you’re reeling under credit card debt, the time to declare bankruptcy is now. Get a fresh start and save your money from now on out. You might want to hedge your bets and put a percentage toward each goal.
3) Here is your mantra regardless of your decision…save and don’t spend, save and don’t spend, save and don’t spend.
How much money can you free up every month? The way things are going, if I were you, I’d make drastic cuts in my lifestyle and budget for as much as possible.
Assignment: Look over my blog posts labeled frugality and find a few frugality blogs to follow for ideas and advice. Make your budget with a generous amount alloted to emergency fund (the goal is at least 10K per person in your family) and debt repayment if you’re going that route.
Originally posted 2009-08-29 05:56:00.
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