Avoid Panic Buying. Your Wallet Will Thank You!
Emergencies Suck. But Don’t Panic Buy
It’s an emergency. You’re panicking. So, you feel the strong need to do some panic buying. You don’t know if you are going to be able to get what you need. So, you try to get as much as you can as fast as you can. I get it. A pandemic started roughly in early 2020 and we’re still in it. There’s a lot of uncertainty going around, so you probably feel like getting while the getting’s good.
But is the getting really good? For this, I’ll compare panic buying to the general public buying stocks. By the time us regular investors hear about a hot stock, it has likely already peaked. The people who know a lot about stocks, you know, the not so average buyers, got in long before the public heard about it. Then, when the public starts buying, the early buyers can sell at a great profit.
This is similar to panic buying because by the time the general public know about an emergency event coming, it’s often too late to prepare adequately. Want to know why? Because many other people are starting to panic and buy lots of stuff all at the same time. This lessens everyone’s chances of getting what they need, and it might hurt critical supply chains in the process. That’s not good for anyone.
Plan and Prepare
Chances are that an emergency will sneak up on you. This can happen at any time. So, what should you do? Make a plan on how you can have the essential things you will need if an emergency happens. A look at patterns for weather and power outages for your area can be a great place to start. Additionally, OSHA has resources that can help you prepare. Sure, they may be geared more towards the workplace, but much of the information can be adapted outside the workplace. For emergency and disaster prep in general, Ready.gov is a good resource to help you prepare.
It’s important to make your plan prior to an emergency event. It’s going to evaluate the various high risk events that can cause an emergency in your area. The evaluation process will help you to fortify weak areas, and maintain areas you may already be strong in. Trying to plan in the midst of an emergency is typically fruitless because you don’t have what you need a head of time. For instance, it’s a lot harder to fuel your vehicle when everyone is evacuating a hurricane that has just descended upon them. But the days before that happened? Well, you might be able to get safely out of dodge with all that you need to get by.
Tips for Getting Started
You came to this blog probably because you were interested in what you can do to avoid panic buying and be better prepared. It would suck to let you go empty handed, so to speak. So, here are some tips to help you be better prepared in general.
Start preparing long before an emergency, where possible.
Prices are often better before everyone knows that a crisis is upon them.
You typically think better about what you will need when you are not in panic mode due to an emergency.
Have at least several days of food and water rations.
Food is similar to water, but it will need to be non-perishable and you may need to plan for a bit less calories than what you normally may take in. It is an emergency after all, but check with your medical provider on your minimum caloric and nutritional requirements.
Your bathtub can be a great place to store water.
If you are at the beginning of your preparations, it may make more sense to have ready-to-eat food rations.
I have some ready-to-eat rations that I plan to taste. I’ll let you know what I think of them!
Have battery powered lights. It can get pretty dark at night without power.
Have blankets and clothes that are made to help retain heat if you don’t have an external heat source.
Consider something like a camping toilet with solidifying and odor reducing gels. Depending on how bad the emergency is, you may not want to waste your precious drinking water on flushing the toilet.
Yeah, I know it sucks to think about this, but it’s part of the human condition.