It’s almost hurricane season in Florida again, and it’s time to talk about hurricane prep. There’s a lot you can do to help prevent damage to your home and loss of property due to storms. This blog series from Olympus Insurance can help show you how and where to “batten down the hatches” before the next named storm hits the Florida coast.
First, check out the exterior of your house. It’s a good idea to get photos of your roof before storm season starts – in the case of a claim, knowing the former condition can help you prove damages done by high winds or hard rain. You may wish to install impact resistant hurricane glass that can resist up to 110 mile per hour winds; if you live within 1 mile of coastline, this may be required by Florida Building Codes.
You may also choose to invest in storm shutters – just make certain your installer follows Florida hurricane shutter installation codes. Clean out gutters and check to see if any outside flashing is in need of repair.
Are there any trees that have fronds or limbs overhanging your roof or perilously close to windows? Now is the perfect time to get an arborist on the scene and trim tree branches that could end up causing a hole and opening your home up to wind-driven rain. Getting this task out of the way early in the season can help you avoid being taken by surprise by an early summer storm.
Remove any debris around your home that could be caught up by winds and thrown about your property. If you leave this task until last, remember that you shouldn’t cut or trim any vegetation during a hurricane watch or warning, so make sure to check your local weather stations after April 30th to make sure an early storm isn’t in the offing.
If a hurricane watch or warning is issued, lower the water level in your pool by six inches and add extra chlorine before covering it. Turn off any power to the pool and disconnect the pump. Make sure you have stocked up on the necessary materials to shock your pool after the storm in case of contamination.
Consider where you will put any outdoor items in case of a major weather event. Outdoor furniture, bicycles, kids’ toys, potted plants, yard decorations, lawn equipment, tools, and grills should all have a safe storage space where they can quickly be put away in an organized manner before a storm.
Vehicles & Trailers
It’s not unheard of for a secure boat to go through a sliding glass door or side of a house. Cars, trucks, boats, and trailers should be sheltered in a garage or boathouse, safely moored or anchored with sturdy tie-downs, or otherwise secured in the event of high winds.
These tips can help you protect your property from damage from both wind and rain, and from property you own becoming airborne. Next week, we’ll look at protecting your home’s interior and your personal belongings.
This article is for informational purposes only and does not form a part of, replace, change or amend any terms, conditions, provisions or language within your Olympus Insurance policy. We encourage you to read your entire policy.