Hurricane preparation requires planning and some investment, but knowing that your home will be less likely to sustain damage is worth the money and effort. Here are some of the essential preparations you need to make:
Secure Your Home
- Strap down your roof. Many homes in Florida are designed to account for hurricane strap installation. However, if your home is older, you might need to retrofit your roof so that you can take this necessary precaution and prevent damage to this integral part of your home.
- Install head and foot bolts on your external doors. Extra security for your home’s entrances is a good idea. These bolts will keep your doors from flying open or detaching in high winds.
- Purchase storm shutters. Storm shutters protect your windows from being broken by flying debris and high wind pressure. You can buy shutters that are commercially made, or you can make them yourself. Be sure to use reinforced plywood that is at least five-eighths of an inch thick.
- Make windows and doorways watertight. Water that seeps into your home’s structure through cracks in door jambs and window fittings can cause serious water damage. The influx of moisture into the walls can also cause mold damage. Caulking around doors and windows will prevent this from happening.
Start Landscaping for Hurricane Preparation
- Hire someone to assess your trees’ health. It can be difficult to tell whether a tree will be able to withstand hurricane-force winds if you are not an expert. An arborist can help you determine whether you need to remove any dead trees from your property to prevent damage to homes in the area. This is an essential hurricane preparation.
- Trim shrubs and trees. Hurricanes can easily break limbs and send them flying into nearby structures. Trimming also prevents large plants from being uprooted because of high winds.
- Tie down small trees and shrubs. Small plants are prone to being uprooted if not properly secured.
- Replace gravel with shredded bark. If you have a gravel driveway, you might want to consider replacing it with a lighter material. Hurricane-force winds can blow even sizeable rocks against surrounding structures, causing serious damage to windows and siding.
Revisit Your Insurance Coverage
Insurance policies vary a great deal. Are you uncertain whether the coverage you have now is adequate? If not, you should make an appointment with your insurance agent to go over what your policy covers. You should also consider buying flood insurance for your home. If you live in a flood zone, you are required to purchase flood coverage, but even if you don’t, you might still need it.
We all remember the damage that Hurricane Irma caused last year. If you don’t want to relive that this year, it’s time to start your hurricane preparation efforts. Don’t wait until it’s too late!
If hurricane season is not kind to you this year, get in touch with us as soon as possible, before you file a major claim. We will help you enforce your right to proper recovery.