To stay safe during hurricane season, homeowners need to make an evacuation plan, prepare an emergency kit, and protect their homes against potential damages caused by hurricanes and tropical storms. Here are 10 steps to prepare for a hurricane.
10 Steps to Prepare for a Hurricane | NSI Insurance
10 Steps to Prepare for a Hurricane | NSI Insurance
Homeowners in Miami and other coastal areas are at higher risk of hurricanes. To protect yourself, your family, and your home, it’s important to know what steps you can take to prepare for a hurricane.
To stay safe during hurricane season, homeowners need to make an evacuation plan, prepare an emergency kit, and protect their homes against potential damages caused by hurricanes and tropical storms. Here are 10 steps to prepare for a hurricane. For additional information on safeguarding your home during hurricane season, contact us today for a free insurance quote.
How to Prepare for a Hurricane
First and foremost, always listen to local authorities for advice on what to do in the event of a hurricane. If a hurricane is approaching, watch local news channels for updates and pay attention to any evacuation orders. But remember, hurricane preparation should start well beyond hurricane season. To minimize damage to your home and evacuate safely during a hurricane, follow these 10 steps.
1. Make an evacuation plan
Hurricanes often force homeowners to temporarily evacuate. To prepare for this, you should create an evacuation plan for yourself and your family.
Familiarize yourself with local routes and establish a meeting place for you and your loved ones in case anyone is separated during the evacuation. Remember to turn off your utilities before leaving, and if applicable, prepare an evacuation plan for your pets. One wise step for caring for your pets is researching pet-friendly hotels in places where hurricanes typically don’t strike.
Always follow local evacuation orders, and don’t return home until local authorities indicate that it is safe to do so.
2. Prepare an emergency kit
If you are forced to leave your home, it’s important to have an emergency kit containing the necessary supplies for you and your family.
Your emergency kit should include:
● Portable chargers
● Extra batteries
● Non-perishable food
● Cash and credit cards
● Photo identification
● Remember to pack all medication needed for yourself, your loved ones, and your pets. This is often easy to forget, so having a list handy is always a good idea.
Keep in mind that hurricanes often cause mass store closures, so your emergency kit must contain essential items that you and your family might need during an evacuation.
3. Unplug electrical appliances
To prevent damage and potential electrical fires, unplug all appliances before evacuating. You should also move appliances and other items away from windows and doors. If possible, store these items in a closet or cabinet to make them less vulnerable to water damage.
4. Use storm shutters
During an active hurricane, strong winds and debris can break windows, doors, and skylights. To protect against this, consider installing storm shutters and impact-resistant glass throughout your home. If you don’t have storm shutters and need a last-minute solution, you might consider nailing plywood across your windows to protect them. This can easily be removed later once you return home.
5. Clear the exterior of your home
Take the time to clear your home’s exterior of loose items, like potted plants, outdoor furniture, toys, etc. Strong winds from hurricanes can pick up and throw these items into your home or a neighbor’s home, causing additional damage.
Remember to also keep large trees and shrubs trimmed throughout the year to minimize damages that might be caused if a hurricane were to rip them out of the ground.
6. Establish a safe room
If an evacuation hasn’t been ordered, or your family is unable to evacuate for some reason, it’s important to establish a safe room in your home for you and your family to hide in during strong storms.
Your safe room should be on the first floor away from any windows or unprotected doors. If you are forced to take shelter in your safe room, stay there until the storm has completely passed.
7. Test your generator
Hurricanes often cause widespread power outages, leaving many to rely on generators for power in their homes. If a hurricane is approaching your area, make sure to test your generator to make sure it works and load up on fuel to ensure you can power important appliances.
8. Charge electronics
If a hurricane will soon be approaching your home, you should be sure to fully charge any cell phones, laptops, and other electronic devices that you may want or need during a power outage. Cell phones should be prioritized as they can be used to communicate with family members during an evacuation.
9. Collect important personal documents
Homeowners should collect all of their important personal documents, including birth certificates, marriage certificates, legal documents, and financial documents, and store them in a fire-proof safe to protect them from damages. You should also store valuables, like family heirlooms or jewelry.
10. Review your insurance policy
Hurricanes can cause excessive damage to your home and personal property. To prepare for a hurricane, you should take the time to review your home insurance policy and understand your coverages, including your coverage limits.
Keep in mind that home insurance often covers damages caused by hurricane winds but not flood damage caused by hurricanes. This is one reason why flood insurance is essential in many coastal areas.
Request a Homeowners Insurance Quote
To cover the damages caused by hurricanes, homeowners may need a combination of home insurance, flood insurance, and hurricane and wind insurance. These coverages help homeowners pay for damages caused by strong winds and debris during active hurricanes.
Contact NSI Insurance today to get a custom quote and learn more about homeowners insurance in Miami, FL.