Tips to Prepare Your Home for Natural Disasters

Tips to Prepare Your Home for Natural Disasters

Natural disasters are unavoidable but the damage they can potentially cause can be prevented. From tsunamis to major earthquakes, extreme storms and more, it’s crucial to take proper precautions in order to protect your property. Here are some affordable ways to prepare and protect your home from natural disasters.

Assess your home’s risks

The first thing to do is assess your home and the risks that follow with living in your particular area. After all, you don’t have to worry about a hurricane damaging your property if you live in the middle of the country but you may have to be prepared for potential tornadoes.

So, take a look around your home. Inspect your foundation, landscape, windows, and entryways, and make any necessary changes needed to fortify your home.

Remove outdoor debris

The storm itself isn’t always what damages your house directly. Instead, its falling trees, exterior debris and other items blown with extreme force that causes the most danger. While you can’t remove every tree on your street, you should certainly consider removing the ones in your yard that can hit your home if they were to fall.

Secure large furniture pieces

If the anticipated natural disaster, such as an earthquake, has the potential to move your home even the slightest, it’s important to secure large furniture. Items such as heavy bookshelves, entertainment units, heavy electronics, workout equipment, etc. have the potential to cause severe interior damage if knocked over. If you’re staying in your home to outstand the storm, this tip is absolutely imperative to ensure your health and safety.

Fill up your bathtub

If you’ll be staying in your home until the storm passes over, it’s important to maintain a water supply in case the systems go down. Fill your bathroom, large containers, and sinks with water, and use it for cleaning and flushing the toilet until the water comes back on.

Turn off your utilities

This isn’t necessarily a viable tip if you’ll be staying put until the storm passes by. However, if you are required to evacuate or live in a natural disaster-prone area and are heading away on vacation, turn off the utilities. Storms can cause electrical fires and gas leaks, which can be even worse for your property than the storm itself. As a rule of thumb, if you won’t be needing it (during a storm) shut it down.

Clean gutters

If the natural disaster is calling for torrential downpours, it’s crucial to clean your gutters before it arrives. This will help prevent potential water damage while also making the post-storm cleanup an easier task. Failing to clean the gutters prior to a storm can result in water being collected in your basement and foundation, which can lead to land slopes or at the very least, a costly repair.

Clean your yard

Depending on the type of natural disaster predicted for your area, you might have to clean your yard of any toys, tools, equipment or appliances that may be in the way of emergency crews. If a fire ignites in your home or the roof is blown off, you want to make sure emergency personnel can easily maneuver around your property as needed. This can mean the difference between your home being salvaged or completely brought down to the ground.

Natural disasters don’t always give you enough time to put these tips into action. So, try to stay on top of them throughout the year to ensure optimal safety for both your family and your property.