National Preparedness Month - Prepare Your Finances

National Preparedness Month is recognized each September to promote family and community disaster planning. Throughout the month, Busey will share tips to help you and your family prepare for the unexpected.

Whether you’re at risk for hurricanes, tornadoes, earthquakes or wildfires—natural disasters are inevitable. The following tips will ensure that you and your family are financially prepared and protected when a natural disaster strikes close to home.

Consider saving money in an emergency savings account. It’s also a good idea to keep a small amount of cash at home in a safe place that could be used in any crisis. These small bills will come in handy if you need to purchase necessary supplies, fuel or food. Unsure of where to start? Try the following:

  • You can reach out to a Universal Banker at any time to start the process of opening an emergency savings account.
  • If you’re unsure on how much you can save, there are many free budgeting tools online—including Busey’s Money Manager, available on our online and mobile eBanking platforms.

Having access to important documents is crucial for starting the recovery process quickly and efficiently. Store important physical documents in a safety deposit box or safe in your home. You should also store important documents digitally on an external hard drive or in the cloud to for easy access during a disaster. We recommend having the following items easily accessible:

  • Photo ID (to prove identity of household members)
  • Birth certificate (to maintain or re-establish contact with family members)
  • Social Security card (to apply for FEMA disaster assistance)
  • Housing payments (to identify financial records and obligations)
  • Insurance policies (to re-establish financial accounts)
  • Sources of income (to maintain payments and credit)
  • Tax statements (to provide contact information for financial and legal providers and to apply for FEMA disaster assistance)

Secure property (homeowners or renters), health and life insurance if you do not already have them. Not all insurance policies are the same. Review your policy to make sure the amount and types of coverage you have meets the requirements for all possible hazards. Homeowners insurance does not typically cover flooding, so you may need to purchase flood insurance from the National Flood Insurance Program.

For questions related to preparing your finances for a potential disaster, call your local Busey branch or book an appointment today using our new Bank by Appointment tool.
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