The article below was written by LaVonda M. Fletcher, State Farm® Agent, Spring, Texas. Her office is in the same shopping center with RREA and we share some mutual clients. I trust LaVonda and her staff to insure RREA and I highly recommend you get a quote from her next time you are shopping for home, auto, life, or health insurance. Now that Hurricane Season is here, I incourage everyone to get organized in case of evacuation!
If you were incapacitated, would anyone be able to find your important records and take care of your family’s financial or business matters? Having
important papers organized and accessible in advance can be very important in an emergency or crisis situation.
Consider the following for organizing your important records.
Location: Options for storage might include a home safe, fire-security box or off-site location such as a safety deposit box. The storage
container should be securable and fire-resistant. Shoe boxes or cardboard boxes in the closet or under the bed are not appropriate.
Who knows? Does someone in addition to your spouse know where these papers are kept? Consider making a list of such papers and
records, and on the list state where these documents can be found. Then advise a trusted third party—an attorney, CPA, relative, or family friend—where this list is kept. The general idea is that someone not living in your residence knows about this list and how to access it. This decision requires a certain comfort
level, and you alone are able to make that determination.
Which papers? Regardless of who knows what, organized records are always a plus. The following items might be part of your
“important documents” list:
- Safety deposit box key;
- Life insurance policies;
- Deeds, contracts, leases, titles, mortgage(s), loan notes;
- Banking, savings, investment and retirement account(s) records;
- Burial arrangements;
- All other insurance policies (health, auto, home, etc.);
- Birth certificates.
Beyond however you decide to store your personal records, and whatever you decide to include, one fact is clear. If important legal, business and personal documents are organized and accessible, the handling of a crisis situation is made much easier.