Emergency Preparedness on a Budget

September is National Preparedness Month according to FEMA. So what better time to write about Prepping on a Budget.

Who should prep?
Everybody should prepare. The more prepared you are the less you have to wait for FEMA or the Red Cross to show up.

What should you prep?
When we started prepping, a a little over 2 years ago, I had no idea where to start.
Did I want food first? Or items like water filtration and first aid.
Then next question was WHAT was I prepping for?
Items you start to collect will look different for a catastrophe, like an EMP vs just extra food in case of a snow storm.
I quickly learned you can’t prep for every scenario and you can’t have every single thing you think you will need without eating anything but Top Ramen, which incidentally, aren’t in our preps.
There are the categories I have:

  • Food
  • Water
  • First Aid
  • Security

Where to store your preps
We are fortunate that we have 2 extra bedrooms since our older boys moved out. One is a guest room, the bigger one is our ‘pantry’ if you will.
We also have stuff in all sorts of other weird locations.
You have to get creative. Can you put stuff on a closet shelf? Or at the back of the linen closet?
Make sure to write down what you have where to save time looking when you need it.

When should I start?
Yesterday. Seriously. It’s that important. I can not stress enough how important I feel being prepared is.
It is not from lack of faith that I prep either. Prepping is actually biblical.

You can read Prepared Christian and an article at Survival Blog

Why do I think you should prep?
Whether for job loss or natural disaster or for bigger things like economic collapse or war with other countries…Have you heard what is happening in Israel?

In my opinion, one can not afford not to prepare.

I started out just picking up a can or two extra of chili or an extra box of noodles.

Then I would go to Costco and get a bag of rice or beans. Flour and sugar, too. Their salt is the best price I have found. (Go to this post on how to store them)

My next step was couponing. I was able to acquire a lot of bathroom items this way. Razors and toothpaste, also bars of soap. Cleaning supplies was another thing I was able to accumulate. (I usually make my own with essential oils) Any food I purchased with coupons was specifically for ‘the prep room.’ We don’t eat processed food on a regular basis.

I also budget for Zaycon Foods. I purchase chicken, ground beef, and have purchased their bacon. I then canned some of it and froze some of it.
It’s a chunk of cash at first, but the quality is top notch and I have peace of mind with that much meat already stored.
The dollar store isn’t a bad option either. Especially when you are first starting and want to get a small stockpile going.

If you are serious about prepping you will find other areas to cut back.
Do you need that latte from your favorite stand everyday? Or that name brand pair of jeans?
Also, shop around for bigger ticket items.

Amazon is sometimes a good place, or your local Value Village or Craigslist.

Prepping isn’t just food and supplies.

Prepping is also knowledge.

  • Learn basic survival techniques.
  • Learn how to safely use essential oils and herbs.
  • Learn how to sew or knit.

These are skills you can trade for items if you need to.


In short, you will be surprised how quick your preps grow if you only do an item or two at a time at your weekly shopping trip.

You don’t have to get everything all at once, but I do encourage you to start now.

Please feel free to e-mail me or leave a comment if you have any questions. I am not an expert, but I can help by answering your questions or sending you to the right place.

photo credit: 401(K) 2013 via photopin cc

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