Now that hurricane season is here, it’s time to make some plans. Here are a few quick tips from Loren Marozas, an insurance sales director with William Raveis Insurance.
- Keep copies of important documents, such as insurance policies, the deed to your home and other personal papers in a dry, secure place and readily available. You may also want to include your evacuation plans, a shelter in place plan and important phone numbers. It’s also best to take a home inventory of all of your belongings. A home insurance inventory complete with descriptions and photographs of items will be an invaluable resource should you need to file an insurance claim.
- Create a hurricane preparedness kit, which should include water, nonperishable food, batteries,
flashlights and a battery-powered NOAA weather radio. You will also want to make sure to account for any special needs your family may have such as prescription medications, supplies for children, the elderly or pets.
- Anchor any items outside of your home that could become a dangerous flying projectile. Take a day to make your landscaping more hurricane resistant. Activities include replacing landscaping rocks with mulch and (especially) trimming back tree limbs hanging over your roof.
- Clear out your gutters. Along with strong wind, hurricanes bring heavy rains. Your gutters are there to direct this rainfall away from your home and prevent flooding. This only works if your gutters are clear and in good shape. Take the day to clear out leaves or any other debris. While you’re up there make sure you don’t have any rusted out spots, holes or openings.
- Elevate stored items or keep them in plastic or waterproof storage tubs because as the ground saturates with water, seepage into the basement can occur. This will save you from losing mementos and valuables.
- Cover any window openings, if possible, with plywood to prevent objects from dangerously flying into your home.
- Check with your current insurance company to make sure you are covered properly. While you can’t lower your deductible before a storm arrives, you can prepare yourself for any financial responsibility you might sustain as a result of a claim. Most home insurance policies do not provide coverage for flood. Even if you aren’t in a high risk zone, it might be prudent to contact your current agent (or me) for a very affordable policy, just in case!