Jeffrey D. Allred
A portion of the two-week food supply in Sharon Packers Heber City bomb shelter Dec 5, 2006. She sells bomb shelters. According to a survey last January, 41 percent of Americans believed it was smarter to prepare for a catastrophe than it was to invest in a 401(k).

Although 73 percent of Americans thought that predictions of the world ending Dec. 21, 2012 — the day the Mayan Long Count Calendar ends — are unlikely, 41 percent thought that preparing for a catastrophe was a smarter investment than saving through a 401(k), according to a study done by Kelton Research last January.

Whether the world ends on Friday or not, an article by Bankrate suggests how to be prepared for financial disasters.

Bernie Carr, a health care professional who writes about preparedness, said to focus on likely threats, which for her are hurricanes and tornadoes. She sets aside about $100 per month for restocking water, canned food and other supplies.

She said creating a budget is the biggest thing.

"I think of it like insurance. You always want to have it, but you never want to use it," Carr said to Bankrate. Paul Purcell, a terrorism and natural disaster preparedness trainer, agrees about the importance of having a budget.

"Going over budget on your security puts you at risk, too," Purcell said to Bankrate. "So it's just as important to stick to a budget as it is to be prepared."

EMAIL: [email protected]