Financial Prepping

Disclaimer: I am not a financial advisor. This article merely states my opinions and views as a non-professional. If you’re looking for professional advice, contact an actual professional advisor.

One of the most commonly overlooked preps is financial security. Obviously, most people are aware of 401k’s and retirement planning. I’m not talking about these.

In late 2008, the US Fed, Congress, and President all signed on to the first Quantitative Easing. The purpose? The financial markets were in so much trouble that in reality, most US businesses might have lost access to their credit lines. The trickle-down affect would have been much of America going home without a paycheck for a month or more.

This description comes from Republicans and Democrats. I didn’t believe it at the time, but having learned a lot more about how businesses and financial markets work, I agree with their description now, even if I don’t like their “solution.”

What can almost happen once, can almost happen again. Anything that almost happens enough times can actually happen. A financial meltdown that freezes you and I out of our banks, credit cards, and paychecks could happen.

I’m not predicting it will happen in my lifetime, any more than I’d predict that Yellowstone will explode in my lifetime. I’m just saying, these things happen, and it almost happened in 2008. Also, a lot of brilliant economists predict it will likely almost happen again within the next few years.

In light of that information, think of financial prepping. One of the most basic needs for humans is shelter. Having a house or property paid off with the deed safely stashed goes a long way to providing your human need of shelter.

Many of us don’t have the financial resources to pay off a mortgage early. However, some mortgage companies make it easy to pay ahead on your mortgage. In other words, you pay one or more monthly payments in advance.

Paying monthly payments in advance makes no sense from an investment perspective, so expect most advisors to tell you never to do this. If you look at it from a financial prepping perspective, you could be the only home on the block not facing foreclosure if large numbers of average Joes lose access to paychecks and bankaccounts.

Some people choose the more direct approach of stashing cash. Survivors of the first Great Depression were known to stash cash in around their houses and in their mattresses. If you chose this approach, don’t advertise it. Otherwise, you could become the victim of a burglary or other attempted crime.

Many people, including well known economists believe the USD is about to lose massive amounts of value. I’ve know people that have gone through total currency collapses in their home countries. From their personal stories I know we never want to live through a total currency collapse.

A common financial prep for those that believe in the demise of the USD is the purchase of precious metals. I don’t like this one, personally. Gold, silver, and other metals are hard to exchange and almost always exchanged for cash at a loss to the private owner. Also, governments and thieves love making off with gold and silver.

Gold is way too expensive for most people. If I had to chose between gold and silver, I’d chose silver. Silver is staying relatively low in price and affordable for normal people. Silver eagles run for about $20 a piece currently. That means you can sell them for about $15 a piece. I believe silver prices will inflate like gold prices have in time.

When considering your family preps, don’t forget your financial preps. Probably the best financial prep is paying off debt. Personally, I’m dreaming of paying off a small house someday.

Some Shows for Homesteaders and Preppers

I love shows that relate to homesteading and prepping. Unfortunately, there isn’t a genre selection on Netflix or Hulu for prepping and homesteading enthusiasts. They’re all ready for you if you want to browse Disney flicks or find Broke Back Mountain, but nothing for people with a little bit of pioneer in their souls. Let’s be honest though, I’d probably hate their selection even if they had a genre for us.

So, here are a few shows I’ve found fun, that I’d put in the Preppers and Homesteaders genre if I was in charge. I’ll see if I can come up with a few more for future posts, but this selection will be a good place to start.

Tiny: A Story about Living Small

This documentary follows the efforts of a man pursuing his dream of putting a tiny house on a trailer on isolated piece of property with beautiful views. He spends a full year building the house, with the help of his girlfriend. The reason he puts the tiny house on wheels is to avoid issues with zoning laws.

The documentary features many interviews with people that already live in tiny houses. It explores the challenges, advantages, and social responses to tiny house living.

This approach to living may be advantageous to preppers or homesteaders that seek a residence while developing the agricultural potential of land in an area that does not lend itself to home construction.

The last 50 years have seen the introduction of extremely restrictive building laws even in the remotest of areas. Imagine what the early settlers of your area would have thought about the outlawing of their lifestyles. (“Sorry. Do you have a permit for that log cabin? No? You’ll have to tear it down or face a fine.”)

Food, Inc.

If any documentary can inspire you to grow your own food, this one will. Food, Inc documents the treatment of animals and food production now that the farming industry has gone corporate. Not surprisingly, food production in modern times results in less healthy meats, vegetables, and fruits showing up on grocery shelves.

Solutions to the factory treatment of food production include homesteading, hunting, or growing a garden. If you have the resources, buying from small farmers or grocery stores that are supplied locally can help you vote with your dollar for a different supply chain for our food.

Out of the Wild: The Alaska Experiment

This is a great documentary series for the prepper in your life. The first season starts out with nine ordinary people dropped in the middle of Alaska with only minimal survival training and a heap of supplies—some useful, and some not so much. Their goal is to get out of the wilderness on foot, … and alive.

The great part about this series is that you get insight into mistakes easily made in a bug out situation. If you’re a prepper planning to leave civilization behind for a while during the next local or global zombie apocalypse, then you’ll want to see what worked and what didn’t for this group.