I wrote a blog entry about “hell planning” a couple of weeks ago, right after Sandy hit and before I’d actually run into seniors affected by the storm.
Then, the following weekend, I actually volunteered for relief efforts and found that the picture came into sharper focus when I got into the middle of the glossy black picture.
Anyhow, a few more thoughts about hurricane planning and the long-term care and senior market products communities.
First, some kinds of disasters — fires, earthquakes, snowstorms and influenza, to name a few — can and do affect anyone.
Hurricanes may be somewhat more likely to affect the kinds of middle-income and upper-income retirees and near retirees who will dominate the typical financial advisor’s client list because hurricanes affect people who live in coastal areas. Some of those people may be low-income people living in shacks or inconveniently located highrises, but many are people who are or, at least, in their younger days, were, affluent.
When I went to donate a plastic bag of batteries, flashlights and non-perishable food to a shelter in a historic National Guard armory, one of the first desperate pleas I got was not for crackers, socks or underwear, but for a copy of the Wall Street Journal.
Some of the other people I know who were severely affected by the storm are small business owners and, as far as I can tell from what’s published on the Web, probably the children of great estate planning clients. People affected by hurricanes may really be your people.
Second, your clients can never have too many flashlights, transistor radios and batteries. Some of your clients may have been shivering in the cold and dark for days, not understanding that rescuers were available to take them to warm, well-lit shelters, or even nice hotel rooms or guestrooms, for want of a few dollars in batteries and transistor radios.