Hurricane season this year is June 1-Nov 30, which means the season just kicked off. In recent years, large hurricanes have been hitting earlier and earlier in the season. If you live in or around the Gulf Coast, you could endure significant hurricane damage. Depending on the category, hurricanes can cause flooding, month-long power outages, roof damage from wind, debris, and fallen trees, water damage to a home’s interior, etc. While the threat of hurricane season can be stressful and daunting, there are several ways to prepare and fortify your home to protect against hurricane damage.
Check your insurance for hurricane clauses
- Review your insurance policies to ensure that you are protected against damage caused by a hurricane, and that your policy will cover the full cost of rebuilding if you lose your home. The value of a home is usually less than what it will cost to rebuild. Keep this in mind when reviewing your policy for hurricane damage. Additionally, many policies will cover damage caused by a hurricane, but not the floods that often follow the storm. Consider purchasing flood insurance to supplement your homeowner insurance policy.
Hurricane-proof your roof
- Secure and seal your roof. Because water can damage the structural integrity of your roof, making it prone to collapse, you should have your roof inspected before hurricane season starts. Invest in truss tie-downs or hurricane straps that can be used to help stabilize and fortify your roof in high winds. Seal any cracks or areas that are at risk for leaks and repair or replace loose shingles to reduce the chance of losing them in gale-force winds. You can nail loose shingles down or use caulk to secure them.
Hurricane-proof other structures on your property
- Secure porches, carports, and A/C units. Ensure posts supporting your porch or carport are firmly anchored to the ground. Structures like this can act as a wing during high winds and can rip portions of your house off if the wind catches it right.
Ensure proper window and door sealing for strong winds
- Check the seals around your windows and doors. Normal weather can damage seals over time, making it easy for outside elements to enter your home. Sideways-blowing rain will easily make its way into your home if your windows and doors aren’t sealed properly. You can also shield your doors and windows by installing storm shutters before hurricane season begins. If storm shutters don’t fit into your budget, affix sheets of thick plywood over your windows and doors before a hurricane. Shielding your doors and windows will help reduce risk of damage from flying projectiles such as patio furniture, outdoor grills, trampolines or broken tree limbs.
Secure outdoor furniture from hurricane damage
- Bring outside furnishings inside. You can’t control what property others will secure or store, but you can control what you do with your own. Bring patio furniture, potted plants, outdoor grills, and other outdoor items inside or anchor them to the ground. No one wants to find their $500 Weber in their living room.
Know what you own
- Take inventory of your property. Survey and inventory your home and your personal property each year so that you know exactly how much something is worth should you need to replace it. Be sure to store this document in a waterproof/fireproof safe, in the cloud, or use an app to help you track all of it.
Giving yourself time to prepare for hurricane season is essential. Taking the proper steps to secure your home and formulate a plan for you and your family is critical and can make a significant difference in how you handle the aftermath of a hurricane. Should you experience flooding or water damage, call the experts at Restoration and Recovery Contractors of America at (850) 601-3029 or fill out our contact form. Our highly-trained and fully certified residential and commercial restoration techs are available 24/7 and we make it a priority to respond within 1-3 hours.