Would have, should have, could have really have no place in a homeowner’s vocabulary. Reality is, it is YOUR home and it is YOUR responsibility for its upkeep and maintenance. As seasons change, so does the weather. Right now, the U.S. has a pretty big storm moving in our direction and you should ask yourself, “Am I prepared?” If you answered yes, then you are doing great and the remainder of this article may be passed on to others that you think need it. If your answer is either “No” or “Not Sure” then keep reading. Hurricanes may be impacting only the coastal regions but the secondary effects that come from the storm moves across land for hundreds of miles.
**When I lived in Louisiana, the hurricanes that impacted the coast always sent torrential rains, tornadoes, and terrible winds that caused quite a significant amount of damage to the areas over 200 miles from the coast. During hurricane Andrew, it took weeks to restore power and we were over 200 miles from where it impacted.
Here are some things you can do to reduce the amount of damage to your home and help you to be better prepared:
Insurances. Is your homeowner’s insurance up-to-date and paid? Do you have other insurances for flooding, earthquake, sewage backup, etc.? Rule of thumb here is, ‘it is better to have and not need than the alternative’.
Roof. Well before major storms, you should visually inspect your roof for any dips or weak looking spots. If you see some, you should get up on your roof and test the area or areas in question. For metal roofs, you want to check for rust and loose anchoring or metal.
If you do not have time to do this, make the time. If you think there is a problem, call me and I will give you my recommendations for roofing specialists/licensed contractors or check the Internet and/or the Better Business Bureau. DO NOT be part of the problem but the solution.
Windows and Doors. Check to ensure that all windows and doors are properly installed and seated. Check that all doors and windows are sealed and will not allow water to get into the framing of your home. In the case of a hurricane or tornado, you may want to have some cheap plywood in your possession to cover your windows and doors. Nail the wood panels over the frames. In the best case scenario, the wood will stop your entry ways from being blown out or broken.
Outside Equipment/Furniture. All of the things that can be found outside that are not secured should be carried into your home. If you have a child’s play set in the yard, try to secure that with stakes and remove any of the additional parts like swings, slides, etc. Don’t be the neighbor that has their patio table fly into your neighbor’s front window!
Manufactured Homes DON’T BE THERE WHEN THE STORM HITS!
Gas. Ensure that any and every vehicle and gas can you have is filled up before the rush of people who waited until the last minute. Gas will not be carried to or from storm areas until the roads are deemed safe. If you don’t have one, get a generator and the gas for that as well.
Food/Water. Just like gas, get your supplies and have them on hand well before there is even word of a storm. You want to have canned foods, bottled water, and stuff that will last over a week or so. Steer clear of milk, fresh vegetable and fruits, etc.
Major Storms SUCK!! They are naturally occurring and cannot be stopped but if each person does their part and takes care of their selves and their properties then the amount of damages will be reduced for yourself and those around you. Again, DON’T BE THAT NEIGHBOR!
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