Thousands of people who have lost homes in the California wildfires discovered too late that their insurance coverage had not kept up with the rising cost of lumber, labor and other rebuilding materials. Talk to your insurer to make sure you have enough coverage but, for a quick reality check, ask a local contractor how much it costs to build per square foot and multiply that by your home’s size.

One of the most painful post-disaster tasks is compiling an inventory of possessions so you can seek reimbursement for the contents coverage. It’s far easier to put the list together beforehand.

Here are tips for shoring up your finances:

Safeguard your documents: Keep a copy of your will, trust, birth and marriage certificates, Social Security cards, insurance papers, medical information, most recent tax return, receipts for high-ticket items and other important documents in a safe deposit box. You can also scan and save them to a DVD or flash drive, which you can give to a trusted friend or family member outside the region. Another option is to save them in the cloud.

Break out the camera: Your insurance will pay for everything you lost — up to your policy limits — as a result of a covered “peril,” such as fire or windstorm. To get reimbursed for your personal belongings, most companies require a detailed inventory of every item lost, although some will advance a portion of your contents coverage without this list. While your house is still standing, use an online inventory or app or print a blank one from the California Department of Insurance or consumer group United Policyholders. Store it away from your home or better yet, in the cloud. At the very least, take photos or videos of everything in your home and outbuildings, including

More than ever, we rely on a continual supply of power into our homes and offices to, well, quite literally keep the lights on. But what happens when the lights go out? Or what happens when you travel somewhere where there isn’t a convenient power outlet for you to be able to plug into and use?

It’s at times like this that people wish they had backup power. And for years, the mainstay has been gasoline generators. But these are big, bulky, noisy, need regular maintenance, emit noxious fumes that rule out running them indoors, and then there are all the associated risks of setting everything alight with gasoline.

Enter the Bluetti EB240.

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The EB240 is a beast. It’s a huge heavy box with a sturdy handle on the top, and inside is 2,400Wh of LG lithium cells that can output 1,000W of AC (1,200W surge), 9A of 12V power, and four USB-A ports outputting 2A, and a 45W USB-C port.

The package is no power bank you can slide into a pocket. The box, which resembles a suitcase with a convenient handle on the top — is 37.08 x 16.51 x 36.58 cm and weighs in at an incredible 17.2 kg when all the packaging has been removed.

Despite all the power and ability, there are only three buttons on the EB240 — on/off, AC power on/off, and DC power on/off.

With so much power at my disposal, I wanted to know what I could do with it?

First off, I spent a few days using it to charge up all my smartphones and gadgets. The four 3A USB-A and one 45W USB-C PC port can handle all my devices without batting an eye. I calculated