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How to Prepare Your Home and Family For Hurricane Season

June 05, 2019

Hurricanes are one of the most damaging natural disasters, not only affecting property but people’s lives. With hurricane season officially running from June through November, it’s important to be well prepared. But if you wait till a hurricane watch is issued it is often too late to take some precautions. That’s why it is important to be ahead of the game and prepared before hurricane season begins. Here are some things to consider.

Take Inventory of Personal Property

It’s important to make a detailed list of all your possessions, including having photo and video evidence. This will help speed up the insurance claims process and can be used for tax deductions purposes. Read our post on How to Create a Home Inventory to learn more.

Review Your Insurance Policies

Your homeowners insurance policy will cover the costs of repair to the structure of your home, replacement of personal possessions, and additional living expenses if you are displaced while your house is being repaired. But remember, there is a separate deductible for hurricanes and wind damage. Also, flood damage is not covered under a standard homeowners policy and requires a separate policy.

Please make sure you review your policies to make sure you have the correct coverages in place for your specific requirements. Additionally, it’s important to review your policies early because most policies have a waiting period before the policy takes effect.

Protect Your Home

Creating a checklist to protect your home is important. This helps to ensure you don’t forget anything and that it’s quick to implement. When making your checklist you’ll want to prepare for both heavy rain and wind. While each home is different, here are some things to consider:

  • Be prepared to cover light gravel landscaping ensuring it doesn’t get picked up by the wind turning it into a projectile.
  • Cut weak branches and trees around your home.
  • Have materials available to brace garage doors and windows. Most property damage comes from rain entering a structure as a result of broken windows and doors. Hurricane shutters or ¾-inch-thick outdoor plywood works great for covering windows.
  • If you have a boat on a trailer, a great way to protect it is moving it closer to your house and fill it with water to weight it down securing it to the trailer. Also, make sure you anchor the trailer to the ground or house.

Stock Emergency Supplies

If you wait to stock supplies until a storm is approaching, there will often not be enough after stores with too many people waiting to the last minute. Here’s a list of supplies to always have stocked according to Ready.gov:

  • 1 gallon of water per person per day for at least three days
  • At least three-day supply of nonperishable foods
  • Manual can opener
  • Flashlight and extra batteries
  • Wrench or pliers for turning off utilities if needed
  • First-aid kit
  • Necessary medications, including glasses and contact lenses
  • Moist towelettes, toothpaste, and personal hygiene products
  • Sleeping bag for each person
  • At least one complete change of clothing for each person
  • NOAA weather radio
  • Inverter or solar charger to keep mobile phones charged
  • Cash