As a homeowner, you invest a lot of time and money into making your house feel like a home. Unfortunately, Mother Nature can wreak havoc on your property at any moment, leaving you with expensive repair bills and endless headaches. The good news is that there are several steps you can take to protect your home and family from natural disasters. In this post, we will discuss six ways to safeguard your home from potential damage.
- Obtain Homeowners’ Insurance:
Securing homeowners insurance from a trusted advisor who takes time to explain your coverage is essential to safeguarding your home against unforeseen calamities. A comprehensive policy can prevent you from incurring hefty costs for repairs or replacements in case of unexpected events. It's crucial to comprehend the varying coverage options accessible and their inclusions to ensure sufficient protection for your dwelling and possessions. While some basic policies may not cover damages caused by natural disasters like floods, fires, and earthquakes, it's vital to review your policy and ensure adequate coverage against potential natural disasters in your area.
- Install Solar and a Battery Backup:
To maintain power during a natural disaster, consider installing solar panels and a battery backup. The main advantage of a battery backup is the ability to utilize the solar energy that you capture at any time, even when the local power grid is down. Natural disasters can cause power outages that last for several days to weeks, but solar battery backups can continue to operate from their reserves. The cost of setting up solar panels and a backup battery has significantly decreased over the past few years, and the federal government is offering a 30% tax credit for the system's expense. You can determine if your residence is eligible for solar by contacting a local solar contractor.
- Use Flexible Connections on Gas and Water Lines:
To avoid injuries and property damage caused by an earthquake's tremors, it is essential to secure gas and water lines. Installing flexible connectors is a recommended solution. These connectors can shift and bend in place during an earthquake, preventing gas and water lines from being ripped away from their connection points. However, it's crucial to consult with a professional in your area for proper installation. Improper installation can increase the risk of leaks or breaks, leaving your home and family vulnerable.
- Install a Whole Home Generator:
When a natural disaster strikes, having a whole-home generator can provide crucial electricity to your residence. This is particularly important for those with medical equipment, small children, and elderly individuals who may be unable to leave their homes. Typically, whole-home generators are fueled by natural gas or propane and installed near your home. When a power outage occurs, the generator automatically kicks in, supplying electricity to your residence until help arrives. Whole-home generators installed by professionals are safer for your household compared to portable generators, which can pose a higher risk of CO2 poisoning when used indoors or near your home.
- Trim Large Trees:
Untrimmed trees can become a hazard during windstorms and heavy snow fall which can break off large branches which may cause damage to your property. In areas with dry weather conditions, untrimmed trees can act as fuel for fires, which can spread quickly and endanger your home. To safeguard your property, it is important to regularly trim your trees and promptly remove any dead branches that you spot.
Removing a tree can be a challenging and risky task, particularly if it is close to your home. It is advisable to contact a professional tree removal service if you feel that a falling branch could pose a threat to your family or property. The expense of removing a tree is typically covered by most home insurance policies. You may also want to consider adding the cost of tree removal to your solar panel installation project if the tree casts shade on the area of the roof where the panels will be placed.
- Learn How to Turn Off Utilities:
Properly shutting down utilities before or during a natural disaster is crucial to avoid severe damage to your home. Electricity, water, and gas are potential hazards if they are severed during a disaster. Knowing the steps to shut down utilities can help protect your property from the devastation of natural disasters such as hurricanes, earthquakes, and tornadoes. Before a storm hits, determine which utilities need to be shut off, such as turning off the circuit breaker box for electricity and closing the gas lines. Make sure to identify the shut-off valve or switch for each utility and keep necessary tools nearby for a safe shutdown.