Your life has been turned upside down, but you can take some comfort in knowing that you are not alone. All are at the ready to lend helping hands because you survived the latest disaster! Now What?

Drawing from lessons learned through experiences with survivors of hurricanes, wild fires, tornados, political unrest, Covid-19, and other disasters, this toolkit has been developed to help you organize and accomplish the many tasks that suddenly need to be done to protect you and your family from further financial losses. Experience has shown that it is often the little things that cause the biggest problems down the road, so we’ve tried to include a lot of “little things” that you might not have thought of doing. We know this is not a complete list because everyone’s situation is a little bit different, but we hope it will make it a bit easier for you to get reestablished during the next few weeks and months.


If you get discouraged, remember help is available, but you and you alone are in control of your money and personal financial situation going forward to your new normal. Don’t allow anyone to pressure you into signing any agreement or contract without giving you time to read and understand what you are being asked to sign. If it is a good deal, it will still be a good deal tomorrow. Before you sign anything:

  • Ask questions
  • Verify licenses, bonds, permits, & other credentials
  • Read the fine print

so you know before you owe.


If you do not feel like you can cope with the financial challenges that face you right now, obtain counseling. It’s available to you at no cost. See or call the Disaster Distress Help Line at 1-800-985-5990 or text “TalkWithUs” to 66746 to talk to a trained counselor from the National Institutes of Health Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration. Counselors are on call 24/7/365.