The best time to take action on this blog post is now. Right after you read it, get busy.
Jim Wang, author of the Bargaineering blog, has put together a Financial Contingency Plan series — a number of blogs to prepare you for the unexpected. Losing your wallet, your job or your health. Losing valuables in your home, your identity and more. You get the idea.
This particular post is about Recovering from a Lost Wallet. The tips are easy to follow, but are also the kinds of the things we often say we’ll do, but don’t follow through on. Then, when we actually do lose our wallet, we go into a tailspin. To avoid that trouble, or at least minimize it, take Jim’s advice.
1. Remove things you don’t need.
It doesn’t make sense to carry around credit cards you don’t use or other vital information that you do not need on a daily basis. The best way to avoid losing these items is to keep them in a safe place in your home instead.
“Clean your wallet out ever single day of the junk you don’t actually need a daily basis,” Wang said. “You should not have gift cards, business cards to restaurants you like, or receipts whatsoever. File those away if you need to keep them or recycle them.”
2. Remove your Social Security card.
Chances are you do not need to have your Social Security card in your wallet. It’s an invitation for disaster. Memorize your Social Security number and bring it with you only if you need it for a specific purpose. Wang says take out any blank checks, too, because it has your bank account number on it.
3. Scan or photograph every item in your wallet.
If you’ve ever lost a credit card or your wallet, you know what a hassle it can be to contact the card companies if you don’t have their phone numbers or your account numbers handy. One to way to fix that is by scanning or photographing the essential items in your wallet. This will also help you know exactly what you’re carrying around and allow you to take faster action in the unfortunate event that your wallet is lost or stolen.
4. Keep at least one backup credit or debit card outside of your wallet.
This is a great tip. Said Wang: “If you lose your wallet, you’ll be canceling every credit and debit card you had in your wallet. This will leave you without access to those funds for a few days as new cards are mailed to you. You need to keep a backup card on a different account so you won’t be stuck for those few days.”
So, what’s next. You’re all already bummed out, but there’s no time to mope. Once done is done. Start the work of putting things back together by:
Also, I thought this post on Get Rich Slowly partnered well with this particular series. It provides websites and methods of replacing important documents like a Social Security card, birth certificate and passport.
Question: Have you ever lost your wallet or purse? Were you prepared? What other tips would you recommend?