Getting Your Home Ready for a South Florida Storm
While hurricane season in South Florida can be scary and unpredictable, there are things you can do as a homeowner to ensure your house is as safe as possible in preparation for a storm. Hurricane season usually lasts from the beginning of June until the end of November, with September usually being the peak month for storms. Because hurricane season can last up to half the year, it is crucial to be prepared year-round. Here are 5 tips to make sure your home is ready for a hurricane season in South Florida.
1. Know Your Insurance Policy
Knowing what protections are already intact for your home is a vital step of the process. Often time, insurance policies cover some hurricane damage, but flood insurance is not included. If you are in a high-risk area for flooding, look into purchasing flood insurance to ensure your home is protected no matter what the damage. Also, it is important to review your home insurance policies at least once a year to make sure you’re up to date.
2. Keep Your Roof Well Maintained
The smallest gap or crack in your roof can make a world of difference when it comes to the high-speed wind and rains of a hurricane. If wind is able to get beneath your roof, there is a high probability your roof will lift up and even detach from the house. While the winds of a category 5 hurricane may lift the roof no matter how well it is maintained, a well taken care of roof will be able to hold up against lower category storms.
Also, if winds aren’t strong enough to remove the roof, any cracks or gaps can lead to severe water damage. If water gets inside the walls of your home, it can lead mold and/or mildew that can cause health effects and ruin your home.
3. Track and Take Care of Your Possessions
It is a smart idea to keep an inventory list of the items in your house. There are many free apps that can be used to track all the important items in your home. If anything is damaged, having an itemized list and pictures are valuable when filing an insurance claim and ensures for fair compensation.
Also, it is vital that any outdoor or patio furniture is stored in a safe place inside. While it is very likely these items get ruined outside, there is also a high probability that these items can go flying, leading to more potential damage. If the item is too heavy to move, make sure it is very securely anchored to the ground.
4. Check All Drains and Gutters
In order to avoid excess flooding or water back up, it is important to clear all storm drains and remove any debris. Additionally, ensure that all of your gutters are securely in placed and clear of any debris to prevent any clogging or further water damage.
5. Home Preparation is Important, But Prioritize You and Your Loved Ones
As scary as it is to think about, material objects can be replaced while lives cannot. Evacuation orders are in place for a reason, and if there is an evacuation in your area it is important to follow all protocol. Have an emergency kit prepared with food, water, and, batteries, and supplies to care of you and your loved ones in any situation.
As always, if your home or commercial property have suffered storm damage, SERVPRO of North Palm Beach County is here to help. Contact our storm damage team today to learn more.