Handling finances, mortgage payments, and credit card bills can be frustrating following a disaster.
Here are some steps to take and links to resources that may be of assistance.
Steps To Take
- Report property damage to your property insurance company or agent as soon as possible. Don’t throw away damaged goods or make major repairs until a claims adjuster visits your residence. Also keep receipts for emergency repairs.
- Look into disaster assistance. This may include special loans for homeowners, small business owners or farmers to use to repair or replace damaged property. Visit www.disasterassistance.gov to learn more. You can also call the Federal Emergency Management Agency at 1-800-621-FEMA (1-800-621-3362).
You can also contact the Washington Emergency Management Division to learn about local disaster assistance.
- Immediately contact your creditors if you don’t think you can pay your bills or make credit card or loan payments on time. Paying your debts late or not at all can result in penalties, interest charges and damage to your credit score. Your creditors will likely work with you on a solution, but it’s important to contact them as soon as possible and explain your situation.
- Seek assistance from non-profit organizations in your area. WA211.org can help connect you to local resources in your area. Local organizations can help you find temporary shelter and housing, food, and other support.
- Protecting and Rebuilding Your Finances After A Disaster
Information from the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau on how you can protect and begin to rebuild your finances following a disaster.
- Checklist: Rebuilding Your Finances
Checklist from the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau for rebuilding your finances.
- What You Should Do In The Days Following A Disaster
Information from the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau on what you should do in the days following a disaster.
- What If I Can't Pay My Credit Cards and Loans After a Disaster?
Information from the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau on what you should do if you can't pay your credit card or loan bill following a disaster.
Mortgages and Homes
- What Should I Do If My House Is Destroyed?
Information from the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau on what to do if your home was destroyed.
- Assistance for Homeowners Impacted by Disasters
Information from Fannie Mae about assistance that may be available to homeowners following a disaster.
- What Should I Know About Using Contractors After A Disaster?
Information about what you should know about using contractors when rebuilding after a disaster.
- Handling Insurance Issues Following A Disaster
Information from the Washington State Office of the Insurance Commissioner.
Emergency Shelter and Housing
- Red Cross Shelters
Current information on Red Cross shelter openings.
- Washington State Animal Emergency Shelters
Information about emergency shelters for animals.
- Consejos para prepararse financieramente ante un desastre
La FDIC publica consejos para prepararse financieramente ante un desastre, realizar pagos con dispositivos móviles e investigar cuentas bancarias viejas.
- ¿Cómo reconozco y prevengo el fraude después de un desastre natural?
Washington Emergency Management Division
Washington State Office of the Insurance Commissioner
Washington State Department of Financial Institutions
1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767)