Hurricanes. Wildfires. Freezing rain that leaves roads impassible for a week or more. Natural disasters are a very real risk, and every homeowner needs to be prepared to care for himself and secure his property. Here’s how:

Ordinary citizens need to be prepared to be first responders … They need to have personal emergency plans. They need to be able to feed themselves for several days if disaster strikes. – FEMA Administrator William Long, speaking after Hurricane Harvey

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What Will You Need?

Start with a comprehensive prepper supply list. It may take you a while to collect everything on it. The good news is, you can increase your family’s safety and comfort during a disaster with just a few key items. These include:

  • A medical kit with first aid supplies vital medications.
  • Shelf-stable food.
  • Bottled water and a way to purify more.
  • Sources of light and heat.
  • Emergency clothing and bedding.
  • An emergency radio.
  • Vital documents.
  • Emergency cash.
  • A few sources of entertainment (especially if you have kids).

Where Can You Find Supplies?

Keep costs low by starting at the Dollar Store

The list of supplies you’ll need, especially if you’re supporting a large family, can be intimidating. However, it doesn’t have to cost a fortune. There is quite a lot you can get at your local Dollar Store, from food to water to clothing. Find out here what other preppers have found in these discount shops.

Buy food and water in bulk at Costco or Sam’s Club

Water is vital. The rule of thumb is to stock a gallon of water per person per day. Bottled water is convenient in the short term, but for a longer lasting disaster, you’ll want a backup system. At places like Costco, you may be able to get a quality water filter. Look for a comprehensive filter that takes out everything from giardia to silt to heavy metal contaminants. Don’t forget to get replacement filters.

Look for MREs, camping equipment, and rugged clothing at an army surplus store

Army surplus stores can provide you with self-heating MREs, camping equipment like stoves and sleeping bags, and rugged boots and coats. You can also get water purification tabs here.

Use online retailers including Ebay, Amazon, and Craigslist

Do you have your heart set on a HAM radio, solar panels to charge electronics, or other big ticket items? Keep an eye out for deals on online retailers, especially around Black Friday and during the post-Christmas sales rush.

Ask your doctor for sealed samples of medication.

Your doctor may be able to give you small amounts of vital medication that have been sealed and will last for months if not years. Remember to watch the expiration dates and replace items as needed.

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What About Home Security?

Having the right supplies to last out an emergency situation is an important first step. However, the safety and security of your home also matters. Not sure where you stand? Take a checklist to see how your home measures up.

Protect America’s monitored home security systems secure your house with multiple layers of technology. They can give you peace of mind, even if disaster strikes.

Do you want to know more about monitored home security? Get a free quote from Protect America through our online form or by calling 1-888-951-5136.