Although some survival supplies can be pretty expensive, most of the things people will need after the SHTF are dirt cheap. For example, right now toilet paper only costs about 50 cents a roll. But once the store shelves are bare, most people will trade a lot for a single roll of toilet paper. And that’s just the beginning.
When you think about disaster preparedness, keep in mind that a lot of cheap stuff we take for granted in today’s world will be extremely valuable and desirable after SHTF. This is the stuff you want to stock up on now. Not only will you need it for yourself and your family, you could also use it for bartering.
Here are just 40 examples of cheap items you’ll want to stock up on while they’re still available. I’m sure there are plenty more, so if you think of any, be sure to leave a comment below or on our Facebook page. Now on to the list…
1. Toilet Paper
Toilet paper is pretty self-explanatory unless you are fond of leaves and what-not.
Hand sanitizer will be very useful when water is in short supply and you need to keep your hands clean.
Soap is so cheap today that we tend to take it for granted. But when it’s gone, people will miss it badly. It is crucial to maintaining cleanliness after the SHTF to keep diseases from spreading.
Lighters will be useful as well as an excellent barter item. Buy them in bulk and keep them on hand.
5. Duct Tape
Duct tape has all sorts of uses. Buy several rolls because you’ll need more than you might think.
6. Glow Sticks
Glow sticks can serve as night lights, trail markers, or signals. They are very cheap, but very useful. (Bonus tip: These are really cheap right after Halloween.)
Kleenex or some tissues. You’ll continue to get colds or have allergy problems after the SHTF, and you don’t want snot everywhere or a raw nose.
Vitamins will help keep your immune system strong. Remember, most survival food isn’t very high in vitamins, and your body desperately needs vitamins to stay healthy. Especially Vitamin C.
Aluminum foil has dozens of usess. Buy lots so you can use it for gardening, cooking, cleaning, etc.
Cigarettes may not be healthy, but after SHTF they are going to be in high demand. A single pack could be worth a great deal of supplies, and they actually have some survival uses.
11. Cheap Wine
Cheap wine is easy to come by and will store forever. After fighting all day, a nice glass of wine will go a long way toward calming the nerves.
Bandages are only a few bucks for dozens of them. Buy lot so you can treat minor wounds without being stingy.
Ammunition is fairly inexpensive right now for certain kinds, so buy it while you still can. Folks who are looking for .22 will tell you the benefit of buying when it is plentiful and cheap.
Condiments like ketchup and mustard can sit on the shelves for a while and make an ordinary meal taste a lot better.
Spices like oregano, garlic powder, and the like will turn that bland soup or stew into a delicious meal.
Candy will be an excellent way to keep the kids happy and reward them for helping out during hard times. It’s fun for adults, too.
Lotion can help prevent cracked and chafed skin, which can become a serious problem if left untreated.
18. Chap Stick
Chapstick is more important than many people realize. When you are outside working in cold or windy weather, your lips will become chapped and it can be very painful. Plus, there are many other uses for chap stick.
19. Ziploc Bags
Ziploc bags will be helpful to store leftover breads and other treats you make, or for keeping socks, tinder, small electronics, etc. dry.
20. OTC Medications
OTC medications like aspirin, ibuprofen, and acetaminophen do expire eventually, but the first few years of a post-apocalyptic world will be a little easier if you have them.
Sunscreen is very important and needs to be used to prevent serious sunburns that can leave you dehydrated or suffering from heat exhaustion.
Flour will make life a little easier. Making flat breads, thickening stews, and baking in general is much better if you have plenty of flour.
Sugar makes life better all the way around. You want to enjoy the food you eat; not just eat for survival. I know some people will scoff at this, but morale is very important during a disaster.
24. Feminine Products
Feminine products will be in high demand as women get used to a new way of living without the luxury of feminine hygiene products at the ready.
Seeds to grow a garden will be crucial to creating a sustainable life. Store a large variety of heirloom seeds so you’ll also have seeds for next season and so on.
Matches can be purchased for just a few dollars. Store hundreds or thousands if you can. You will have a lot of fires to start after the SHTF.
27. Pens, Pencils, and Paper
Pens, pencils, and paper can provide entertainment as well as a way to send information and document your new way of life. In fact, if it’s the end of the world as we know it, you should definitely keep a journal. Not only will it be valuable to future generations, it will be therapeutic.
Condoms, because having lots of babies after SHTF is not going to be ideal and chemical birth control is not going to be available.
29. Baking Soda
Baking soda isn’t just for baking. You can use it for many things such as cleaning, deodorizing, and more.
Ponchos can be picked up at the dollar store. You can’t afford to get wet when it is cold out. If you have a heavy-duty poncho, there are several other things you can do with it.
31. Cotton Balls
Cotton balls can be used for cleaning, treating wounds, and protecting the ears when you have to be outside in the bitter cold.
32. Zip Ties
Zip ties are versatile and extremely useful for putting up a quick shelter, holding a door closed, or fixing small things around the house, and much more.
Salt makes food edible and can be used for cleaning, taking care of pests that are invading your camp, de-icing in the winter, etc.
Candles are fairly cheap and you will be surprised at how many you will go through. Candles can be used in place of flashlights to conserve battery power.
35. Shoe Strings
Shoestrings aren’t just for keeping your shoes on. They can be used as cordage for all sorts of things.
36. Activated Charcoal
Activated charcoal is a cheap yet potentially life-saving item that many people overlook. It helps treat poisonings, purifies water, and relieves gas and bloating.
37. Toothbrushes and Toothpaste
Toothbrushes and toothpaste should be stored in bulk. Good oral hygiene is important when there are no dentists.
38. Fishing Line
Fishing line isn’t just for fishing. Use it to hang items, make a snare trap, and set booby traps around your camp.
Towels can be picked up at yard sales and thrift stores. Use them as intended, to make slings, or to seal up a drafty door.
40. Sewing Supplies
Sewing supplies will be needed to mend your clothing when you can no longer stop by the mall or Walmart any time you need new clothes.
Next time you visit the dollar store, take a walk down each aisle and start stocking up on all the little things that will make life much easier after SHTF.