When you live in an area where hurricanes and powerful storms affect you, you learn how to plan for emergencies. Hurricane season started June 1st, which means homeowner’s must prepare their homes for whatever mother nature throws at them. Unfortunately, not everyone has a plan of action for when a storm arrives and all too often it catches people off guard. So, before any hurricanes hit Texas, we thought we would go over steps you should take to prepare your home for hurricane season.
What Should We Expect This Season?
According to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, NOAA, we should expect a “busy” hurricane season. When the NOAA says busy, what they mean is the chances of an above normal season are higher this year. However, there is no guarantee that each storm will turn into a hurricane. The graphic to the right provided by the NOAA shows a breakdown of expected storms along with other key information.
The Cost Of Being Unprepared.
Before any big storms hit, you should take some steps to protect your home from storm damage. The cost of repairing your home after a storm hit can be as devastating as the storm, especially without the right insurance. In fact, the Congressional Budget Office, CBO, estimated last year’s damage to homes alone cost between 34 million and 54 millions dollars. On top of that, the graphic on the left, provided by the NOAA, depicts a breakdown of losses from 1986-2015. So, the need for people to take precautions is quite clear, but what are the first steps to take?
Before The First Rain Drop
One of the best ways to prepare yourself for hurricane seasons is to get all your ducks in a row. For some, that phrase may be literal, but for others it refers to getting organized, a vital component for readiness. In an article about emergency evacuations, Consumer Reports, CR, goes over ways to take inventory before leaving your home. One thing people often forget about in their frantic preparations is taking a log of their possessions for insurance claims. One way to get this done, and something you should do annually, is take a video of all your possessions. Photographs are good, but a video may be accomplished in a quicker fashion, but doing both and having a physical log may work.
Boarding Up Windows
In the event of a storm with the potential for hurricane force winds, boarding up windows can help minimize damage. One mistake people make when boarding up their windows is not using plywood that is thick enough to take handle impacts. Home Depot has a good tutorial on how to properly board up windows. The tutorial has helpful information for those who have never boarded up windows and some extra steps you can take.
Outside of boarding up windows, other parts of your home require protection from hurricane season. In the CR article mentioned earlier, they discuss the one area many homeowners forget to secure, thus leading to further damage. If you have a garage attached to your home, then the garage door is the largest and most vulnerable entryway. Many homeowners already know to stack sandbags around doorways, but securing your garage door can help your home stay intact. The better you can secure entryways into your home, the more protection you home has from the storm.