Being prepared is defined by having the resources you need for a disaster and hoping that you will never have to use them. Those who were in the Boy Scouts understand the need for preparedness in everyday life. They have the skills for disaster preparedness and think about it frequently. For everyone else, thinking about having a supply of food, gas or any tangible asset hasn’t crossed their minds because they haven’t been in a disaster situation before. Most of us have a comfortable daily life with the cold air conditioning and food in the fridge. The comforts make it easy to forget how quickly these amenities could disappear.
WHEN DISASTER STRIKES
Today, the possibility of losing all of our comforts is closer than ever before. After Hurricane Harvey in Houston, we here in Austin, Texas saw a shortage of gas. This was solely because the general public thought there was a need to stock up. It was too late. This shortage lasted two weeks even though our city is hundreds of miles from Houston and the disaster zones along the coast. What a indicator of how fragile our system is. Having as little as 30 gallons of gas will allow you to get you out of the state.
With the gas shortage brought the water shortage. Did you know you can go 5 days without water, but you won’t be able to run to the grocery store to resupply. We’ve seen this in Puerto Rico where people that don’t currently have water are being told that it might take MONTHS for their service to resume to normal. How long would you be able to live your life without water?
After your need for gas and potable water, there is food supplies. In the event that you really have to go with out, the average human can live 3 weeks without eating. Did you know that the average grocery store has only about a 2 week supply of food? This doesn’t get us very far if you are even able to checkout with mass lines and everyone in your area in the same building. It is important to ask, do you have enough food to feed your family for two weeks? Stocking a year’s worth of food at home can feed the family and those few that you take into your shelter.
DIVERSIFY YOUR ASSETS & THINK ABOUT HOW WILL YOU START OVER
Have you ever thought about how a currency can change because the government wills it? How many times has Germany seen a currency change since 1914? That’s right, a mind boggling 8 times and only 3 of those currencies translated to the new currency. The currency you own is useless. What next?
“One little hiccup and you could lose everything”
Did you know that the U.S. government can only resupply a small portion of the money that flows through our bank's daily. As a government entity, they have a stockpile of 25 Billion dollars to cover 9 trillion worth of money in the banks. When it comes to you, the FDIC only insures your personal bank account for amounts up to $250,000. How long could you go without your bank account? In 2012, Cyprus closed their banks because the local government was in debt. When they reopened, money belonging to personal account holders had half of their account balance seized to cover bank losses. It’s time to take a hard look at your tangible asset portfolio. Do you have enough diversity to start over in a time where you can’t get to certain assets?
If you’re still thinking that being prepared is something that you can do next week, we’ve seen Venezuela go through strife and have had the government step in and ration food. The most wealthy Venezuelans can’t buy their way to a meal. Cash cannot buy you everything you need after a disaster. Stocking up, diversifying your options and learning survival skills is just the beginning.
You can read here for the latest updates from Venezuela.