Florida Residents: Get your Tax-Free Hurricane Supplies

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From now until June 1st, residents of Florida will be able to buy designated hurricane supplies with no sales tax in preparation for the upcoming hurricane season.  The season officially starts June 1st, and many Florida residents are shaking in their boots after what has happened in the past two years.  Natural disasters such as hurricanes can pose a huge financial threat on individuals and their families.  This is a great way to save some money on supplies that you may need anyway!  Things like batteries, flashlights, generators, and other related products will be tax free! 

Here is a checklist of things all people in the southeast should be thinking about to prepare for the upcoming storm season.

  • Keep your homeowner and flood insurance in a safe place
  • Evaluate if you should have flood insurance.  Remember Katrina victims.  It is cheap insurance and well worth it if you need to use it.
  • Keep an emergency fund that will cover your deductible and related incurred expenses like temporarily securing your home from further damage if need be. 
  • Keep an adequate amount of supplies, but do not go overboard with this in the event that you need to evacuate, these supplies may be wasted. 
  • Have a backup plan.  Think about the worst case scenario. What if you need to evacuate?  Are you going to stay in a hotel or stay with family?  What if your place of work is unable to conduct business for a month or more?  Do you have enough money to cover your expenses? 
  • Rent a safe deposit box.  Store your insurance policies, expensive jewelry, important documents, and other unreplaceable collectibles in your box.  Jewelry is very important, because many of us do not have the receipts or proof to justify the amounts which may be a problem when claiming it with your insurance company
  • Videotape or photograph everything in your house!  This is a great way to document your personal possessions if the worst happens and you need to replace everything.  Very few of us could write down even half of the items that are in our house!  Spend the time one day and document all of your major possessions. 
  • Pick out a safe zone in your home.  If you ride out the storm, have a plan where your family will camp out when the worst winds blow through.  Obviously, you want to pick an area with no visible windows. 

It is impossible to control the forces of mother nature, but we can make the storm season better by being more prepared!  After the past two years, there is no excuse for better preparing our families.  We cannot take these storms lightly anymore.  We must prepare for the worst, and hope for the best! 

Categories: Budgeting, Insurance, Random, Taxes