As you know, hurricane season officially begins on June 1st
each year. While that may seem like a long time from now it is never
too early to begin your hurricane preparations. And, in the wise words of Benjamin Franklin, “an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.” So, today we’ll take Ben’s words to heart and illustrate five tips to becoming hurricane season prepared.
Update your emergency supply kit
An emergency kit is important to have on hand at home, at work, and in your car and should be in a convenient and easy to reach location in the event of an emergency. Many sites have thorough and printable supply checklists – such as the great one provided by ready.gov here
– and it is important to stock your kit with all the supplies mentioned. Important items include:
- Water and food for at least three days
- Battery powered radio and a NOAA Weather Radio with tone alert. (Don’t forget spare batteries!)
- Flashlights, first aid kit, tools, manual can opener, and local maps
It’s also key to think about your daily “needs” and to add them to your kit. This might be prescription drugs, water, gasoline, food for your furry friends, important family documents, identification cards, or your glasses or contact lenses.
Develop or discuss an evacuation plan
Know your evacuation zone and know where to go once the evacuation order is in place. Don’t know your zone? Follow this link
to your county to find out. Once you have that handled make sure to talk with family and friends to set a game plan. Talk about everything from routes and timelines, house utilities, packing and emergency kits, and anything else that may be pertinent to your family. While these plans can be discussed as a storm is approaching, it is best to tackle this step prior to the season beginning to make sure you have everything you may need.
Take inventory of your belongings
In the event of a claim your adjuster will ask you for an inventory of the lost, damaged, or stolen items. This list is important because it is ultimately what the insurance company takes into consideration when your contents coverage portion of your policy pays a claim. Most of us have more “stuff” than we realize and in a high stress time like a claim it is easy to forget the details of everything we own. Take photos, make an inventory, and write down serial numbers and keep the list somewhere safe so that all your information is easily accessible to facilitate your claim. The Insurance Information Institute has a handy guide here
, if you need somewhere to start. Prefer everything stored on the cloud? Check out the numerous apps within your phone’s app store.
Make sure you have proper insurance coverage
Next up, make sure you know your insurance coverage and that you have enough to cover all of your assets. I mean, we’re a flood insurance company so you knew we’d make sure this made the list, right?! Ideally, you want to make sure to reach out to your trusted agent and do a full insurance coverage review at least once a year. This review is helpful to make sure your insurance is adequate to your current needs and that you are not under insured. Further, your agent can fully explain all the coverages on your policies and help you to expand your insurance knowledge. After Hurricanes Harvey and Irma many policyholders discovered that their home insurance policies did not cover flood or rising water and were left without coverage for their damage. Call your agent today to schedule your annual review to avoid this happening to you!
Prepare the outside of your home
Lastly, make sure to “hurricane-proof” your home as much as possible. The ready.gov link provided in step one also has a great section on preparing your home for hurricane season. Make sure to trim your trees to prevent damaged limbs or trees from becoming flying debris during the storm, secure your gutters and remove any clogs to prevent water damage, and it is also important to inspect your roof prior to hurricane season to prevent leaks and further damage. Even a Category 1 hurricane has winds of 74 miles per hour and can cause substantial damage to your home, so make sure your largest asset is as protected as it can be. Remember those wise words from Ben Franklin? Keep them in mind for next hurricane season!
Make sure to visit www.typtap.com
for more information today!