6 Summertime Weather Safety Tips
How to maintain the safety of your home during the summer
We all know that temperatures aren't the only thing on the rise each summer. Rough weather including flash flooding, damaging winds, hail, hurricanes, and tornadoes also accompany the hottest months of the year. Smart homeowners won't wait for a weather advisory to start preparing their homes and finances. By then, it might be too late.
Here are six actions you can take now to keep your home safe.
1. Trim Your Trees
Ohio residents, and millions of other Americans, recognize that severe thunderstorms during the summer bring the potential for property damage. Protect your home and vehicles parked in your driveway by trimming overgrown trees and dead or weak branches. Otherwise, you risk them landing on your property during heavy rains or strong winds.
2. Keep Your Home Cool
With summer temperatures in Arizona and other southern states skyrocketing past 100 degrees, residents need to keep themselves and their homes safe from the heat. Extreme temperatures can cause the paint to peel from the walls and damage hardwood floors. When you’re not using a room, close the drapes or shades to prevent damage from overheating.
Perform other house maintenance, such as checking weather-stripping and window air conditioner insulation to keep temperatures from rising inside your home. Consult a professional to check your home’s insulation and make sure there are no drafts or poorly insulated areas.
3. Practice a Severe Weather Plan
Certain states, like Missouri, are at high risk for tornadoes. Residents should create and practice a plan in the event of a tornado and seek shelter in a basement, interior closet or bathroom without windows. It’s also important for residents in higher risk areas to ensure they have enough coverage if their home or property is damaged by a tornado.
4. Create a Severe Weather Checklist
Like tornadoes, powerful wind alone can damage your home if you’re not adequately prepared. Before nasty weather hits, make sure you are tying down items outside and around your house that could blow away or fly into your windows. These items might include: toys, patio furniture, outdoor ornaments, grills, and garbage cans. In case of a high wind advisory, immediately tie down and secure these items if it is safe to do so to avoid property damage or personal injury.
5. Review Your Homeowners Insurance Policy
If you live in a high risk area where flash floods and hurricanes are more common, be aware of the potential damage they can cause during the summer. Most homeowners insurance coverage in high risk areas exclude flood damage caused by heavy rains.
Confirm home insurance coverage and limits to avoid any surprises. Don't assume you're covered for natural disasters, such as flooding or tornadoes. Depending on where you live, you may need to purchase a separate policy that protects against this kind of damage or property loss. Speak with a trusted insurance professional about your current policy to remove any doubt about the extent of your current coverage.
6. Complete a Home Inventory
You should also complete a Home Inventory, which is an itemized list of all your personal property. In the event your house and belongings are severely damaged or destroyed, you will need to prove your loss to your insurance company. Having the inventory list ensures you’ll have a smoother claims process.