5 Tips for Storm-Proofing Your Home

5 Tips for Storm-Proofing Your Home

Storm-Proof HomeWhen it is sunny, there isn’t a place in the world that can beat Florida, but during a storm, the weather here is severe. Most of Florida averaged well over 50 inches of rain last year with quite a few areas averaging over 70 inches. That is Mother Nature’s way of telling you she will bring severe storms to Florida no matter what time of year it is.

Keeping Your Home Safe

Don’t be fooled by Florida’s “Sunshine State” motto — we average more than 100 days of the year with thunderstorms. No matter how much notice a meteorologist can give you, moving your home is not an option. You can protect your house against severe weather, keeping your family, your valuables, and your home safe.

Here are some ways you can safeguard your home from severe weather:

  • Window protection
  • Keeping your roof attached
  • Landscaping
  • Reinforcing your doors
  • Keeping your house high and dry

Protecting Your Windows

Your home’s most vulnerable and beautiful asset is your windows. Installing shutters may be an aesthetically pleasing option for you to consider that allows protection and keeps the elements outside where they belong. There is also impact-resistant glass available to you. If windows shatter, more than just property could be hurt or damaged.

Keeping Your Roof over Your Head

Severe wind and heavy rainfall will take years off of your roof shingles or just take your roof off. It is important to remember that you can add more bracing to your roof through the attic of your home for reinforcement. One option many Floridians have decided with is going with a metal roof. It is an incredibly low-maintenance option that has an expected service life of 40 years.

Lawn Maintenance Will Make a Difference

Keeping your lawn well-manicured will make a difference when severe weather strikes. Making sure all of your tree’s branches are far from your roof and power lines will eliminate severe hazards and costly damage. Hedging and bushes could also cause potential problems, so keep in mind that you may want any and all foliage away from windows, entry ways, and any other locations where they could cause damage or obstruct access.

Keeping Your Door on Its Hinges

Don’t let your door be the last thing you think of in severe weather. Check the weather stripping around your door to prevent leaks from heavy rain and strong winds. Make sure that your door’s hinges are securely attached to their frame and that the deadbolt works, as weather could potentially be strong enough to blow the door open. If your doors are older, you may want to consider reinforcing the frame with weather-treated wood.

If the Water Does Rise

Flooding is an expensive and real hazard all across Florida, but you do have options to keep your home dry. If you can’t afford to raise your home so that the bottom level is above the flood plane, you can have floodwalls and berms built to fend off rising water. You will also want to seal every part of your home tight with waterproofing composites and rubber sheeting to keep it dry.

You’re not alone if your home has taken a beating from severe weather. Contact Florida Catastrophe today and we will help you bounce back from disaster.

Tips for Protecting Your Business during a Hurricane

Hurricane ProtectionPeople in Florida are no strangers to stormy weather. Thunderstorms can be a daily occurrence and heavy rain and lightning do not really pose much of an inconvenience to Floridians. However, hurricane season often brings with it a touch of concern even for the most seasoned of storm veterans from early June to late November. During this period of potentially devastating storms, it is imperative to provide adequate protection and planning to preserve your business. Here are some tips to ensure that your business is protected during a hurricane.

Have an Official Emergency Plan

In order to effectively deal with any emergency, it is imperative that businesses have an official emergency plan that can be implemented quickly. In order to be implemented quickly, employees must be aware of it. Employee training is essential to a smooth execution of the emergency plan. If employees are unaware of a codified plan, the situation could become chaotic should an emergency arise. Effective communication prior to the hurricane can help prevent casualties as well as property damage.

Possible elements of an emergency plan could include:

  • An established evacuation route
  • An established “safety room” in the interior of ground floor
  • A protocol to dismiss employees given enough advanced warning
  • Obvious placement of first aid kits throughout the building
  • An emergency supply of food and clean water

Take Preventative Measures

In addition to an established emergency plan, other preventative measures may be taken to mitigate potentially costly damage to people and property. Preventative measures might include anything from protecting equipment to reducing flying debris.

The idea behind preventative measures is to minimize damage and reduce the time period between the disaster and the day when the business can resume normal operations. Reducing damage to electronics, protecting sensitive data, avoiding damage to the building, and protecting employees are all measures that strengthen the ability of a business to recover quickly from any natural disaster.

Other potential examples of preventative measures could be:

  • Trimming weaker tree branches that might break
  • Covering patches of rocks in gardens
  • Boarding windows
  • Turning off gas lines
  • Unplugging sensitive electronic equipment
  • Maintaining an up-to-date insurance policy

A Little Goes a Long Way

Natural disasters have been known to cripple underprepared companies due to property damage and an inability to conduct business. If these measures are followed both before and during a hurricane, the likelihood that the business will be able to resume normal operations immediately after is much higher.

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