If you live in an area where hurricanes are prevalent, the importance of safety precautions can’t be overstated. Hurricane safety inspections can save your home, your life and even thousands of dollars on homeowners insurance.
Is a Hurricane Headed Your Way?
Florida and Louisiana may be the most common victims of the Atlantic hurricane season, but as we have seen in the last few years, everyone from Texas to the Jersey shore needs to be prepared.
You can stay alerted to approaching hurricanes by visiting the National Weather Service’s National Hurricane Center online for updates and forecasts.
However, anyone who has been through a hurricane or has had a home damaged by one will tell you that waiting to prepare until there is a hurricane on the radar is leaving it far too late. Unless of course you like waiting in line for two hours to get gas and have a bulletproof vest for going to battle over what little plywood and tarps there are left on store shelves.
Also note that if you are in the process of buying or refinancing a home, a pending hurricane can delay your closing as insurance underwriters put a freeze on issuing new policies.
The 3 Types of Home Hurricane Safety Inspections
There are three types of home hurricane safety inspections you should know about:
1. Traditional home inspections
2. Your own checklist for inspecting and preparing for an approaching hurricane
3. Wind mitigation inspections
When you buy a home, have a professional home inspection performed. As part of this inspection, the inspector can alert you to items that could pose issues if a hurricane comes your way.
If it has been awhile since you moved in, then you may want to get a new inspection to alert you to any pending threats or deferred maintenance, which could eventually leave your home vulnerable to wind and water damage.
Those who reside in mobile homes are clearly at much more risk than brick and mortar homeowners. The Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles recommends owners have a home hurricane safety inspection performed by a licensed installer. Their safety tip checklist includes checking and securing straps, tie-downs, anchors, stabilizer plates and piers.
Your own inspection checklist of items to take care of before evacuating should include:
● Turning off the pilot light and closing your gas line.
● Turning off water supply and master electrical breaker.
● Trimming trees.
● Clearing the exterior of debris and bringing all movable items indoors.
● Boarding up windows or putting up hurricane shutters.
● Sealing cracks or holes that could allow water into the home.
Save Thousands With Wind Mitigation Inspections
A Wind mitigation inspection is a type of home hurricane safety inspection that evaluates your home’s ability to stand up to hurricane force winds. This inspection covers roof coverings, door security, protection of openings, strength of roof to wall connections, roof deck attachment, roof shape and secondary water resistance. Florida statutes require insurance companies to offer discounts or credits to owners of homes that were built utilizing techniques that help reduce wind damage.
Want More Hurricane Protection?
If retreating really isn’t your thing, even in the face of a deadly storm, or you are interested in home improvements that can help boost your home’s value, you may want to consider building your own safe room.