It’s not easy to imagine your house – the spot you feel most secure – getting broken by the wind or flooding in a huge storm. But, unfortunately, it does occur, no matter if you are in the coastal region.
If you’ve never considered the worst-case scenarios that could affect your home in the event of a storm, you’re in danger of causing more danger and damage for you and your family.
There are many steps to take in preparing and repairing your home before and after a hurricane, tornado, or another major storm. We’ll explain what you can do now and how to prepare for the future to remain safe and help rebuild your home after any damage.
Preparing Your Home for a Hurricane or Major Storm
Natural disasters have their name due to the destruction they cause, and there’s no method to avoid the damage. However, you can prepare for damage and protect yourself and the possessions that you value the most. Use these guidelines to protect your property from a major hurricane or storm.
Get Insurance Coverage Well in Advance
Insurance for homeowners is usually demanded by lenders who lend money when buying an investment property. But this does not mean you must be covered to bring your home back to normal after major flooding or wind destruction.
Check your homeowner’s insurance plan and flood insurance and find out what’s covered. We recommend replacing value instead of cash value on your house and possessions because cash value cannot account for higher costs for new products or the labor to complete the work. Review this report now. Please don’t wait until you see the forecast for an extreme storm because it’s likely that you won’t be able to make any changes.
Document All Your Belongings
The most efficient method is to use the record button on your smartphone, slowly traverse your home, and capture footage of every furniture piece and item you own. Close the doors to cabinets and closets and slowly pan so that it is easier to zoom in and take screenshots when needed. Also, zoom in on the serial numbers, which makes finding replacements simpler, if required.
Stock Up on Items That Will Keep Water Away
It is possible to adopt a proactive approach to lessening the risk of harm to your home using bags of sand that prevent water from getting in through doors or clean gutters, as well as water pumps that assist in removing water quickly should it get into.
It is also possible to adopt preventative measures against winds, such as covering windows with wood to guard the windows against debris that can fly into them, checking roofing for loose or missing shingles before you start, and making sure that outdoor furniture is removed or put in place.
A hurricane forecast might trigger the following last-minute precautions to safeguard your home; however other storms might not be as apparent. If the winds have already worsened or an advisory or tornado watch is in place, adhere to the guidelines for your safety first. Stay in your home.
Move Items to Higher Ground
The lower areas of your house are more likely to be flooded first. So move items to the highest level you can, regardless of whether it’s the second floor, attic, or the upper portion of a split-level dwelling.
Don’t attempt to move large furniture up on your own. However, linens, books, decor, and other things can be kept lower. Olsen recommends emphasizing items that aren’t easily changed, such as the official documents of your family or heirlooms.
Placing items on countertops can help keep items safe against water damage. “I’d start with your most valuable things and move them higher, keeping in mind the bottom 6 to 12 inches (of your home) is susceptible to water and mold damage,” Olsen suggests.
Prepare for Some Time Without Help
Preparing your home is important, but you must be prepared for any time without electricity, water, or even a method to procure food.
Even though tap water is acceptable to drink, fill the water bottles you own in your bathroom, wash them, and then fill them up with water for a better supply. Store food items that don’t require refrigeration and keep flashlights and blankets close by if the damage makes it difficult to access your kitchen, garage, or other areas of your home. If you are taking prescription medications, ensure you have enough medication to last longer than a few days if you cannot access a drugstore after the storm. Ask content restoration services questions to your service providers for a better understanding.
Follow Emergency Instructions
If authorities advise you to evacuate your house ahead of a storm, or any other likely natural disaster, you should take action as soon as possible.
Staying safe can differ according to the type of event, the area and the available resources, and a host of other elements. Therefore, stay in touch with the emergency management agencies and seek their advice on the best ways to remain secure.
If you’re evacuated, you should turn off the gas or electricity to your home to minimize the possibility of damage to your home.
Repairing Your Home After a Hurricane or Major Storm
After the damage is completed, you can begin tackling the repairs process, insurance claim, and any other effort needed to bring your house back to the condition it was before the storm struck. Follow these steps to repair your home following the impact of a major storm or hurricane.
Call and Begin Your Insurance Claim
If you discover that your home has suffered significant damage, contact your insurance company to initiate the process of submitting a claim. It could take just a few weeks before being assigned an adjuster. Therefore the sooner you make contact, the more effective.
Only Enter Your Home if You Know It’s Safe
To fully understand the extent of the damage done to your house, you’ll need to go through the house and look at everything, particularly if you were evacuated and absent for the duration of the storm or hurricane. But you must only enter your home if you are sure it’s safe. For example, instability structures or gas leaks could cause it dangerous to walk through the house.
Even though the storm may have been over doesn’t mean the danger isn’t there, either. Bachmann states that the period after the storm has gone regarded as the third stage of common injuries and the two previous ones are before the storm, in which injuries can be sustained while building the home in the event of a storm when the conditions create a danger to those who live there.
Assess the Damage and Take Pictures
When you are standing outside and coming into your home when it’s safe to do so, Take note of all the damages that have taken place, including the damage to the exterior of your home or interior, as well as broken or damaged items.
To file a claim with your insurance company, you’ll have to document the claim. Certain insurance companies will assign an adjuster to evaluate the damage personally. However, if several homes have been damaged during an event, someone might not be ready to assist you immediately, and the insurance company may need photographs from you.
Open Windows, Drain Water, and Clear Out Wet Items
If your home is water damaged, don’t wait until the adjuster begins drying the home. When you can move inside and open the windows, you can move the damaged and wet items onto your lawn and set fans to aid in drying the interior of your house.
Check if DIY Repairs Are OK
There could be some tasks you’d like to do by yourself, for example, because you’re handy or due to a long waiting list for contractors. However, check with your insurance provider first, as there could be a preference for a professional job, especially when electrical work is involved.
Certain DIY repairs can be done with insurance. It’s just a matter of additional documentation to ensure that the work is done correctly and that you’re compensated properly to cover the work.