Summer in the Midwest means a welcomed respite from frigid temps and a renewed appreciation for all of the outdoor activities that coincide with warmer weather. Unfortunately, summertime also marks the beginning of severe weather season. In the Midwest, we’re lucky to avoid the hurricane-related challenges that our neighbors to the south face every June. However, the severe weather we do experience, including thunderstorms, tornadoes, and floods, can wreak havoc on our property. Below, we lay out six key tips to prepare your home for severe weather.
- Secure outdoor furniture: Prior to a storm, anchor all outdoor furniture like patio tables, pool chairs, flower pots, and other lawn ornaments to prevent heavy winds from causing them to damage the exterior of your home or car (or, for that matter, your neighbors’ home and car). If you’re unable to anchor your furniture, move it into your garage or your home.
- Clear your yard of tree limbs and trim trees: In the event of severe weather, strong winds can blow fallen or dead tree limbs into your home’s exterior or your vehicles, potentially causing severe damage. In some cases, we’ve seen tree limbs puncture windows and cause damage to the home’s interior as well. Clearing your yard of fallen tree limbs or trimming dead limbs from trees prior to a storm can prevent significant damage.
- Don’t neglect your roof: A strong roof that can withstand heavy winds and rain goes a long way in protecting the structural integrity of your home, not to mention its contents. First, if you live in an area that experiences heavy rainfall, consider applying a sealing around your home’s chimney or vent pipes to prevent water from seeping into your home. Next, clean out clogged gutters so that water can quickly filter from your roof to the ground, instead of spilling over the sides of the roof.
- Protect your valuables: Before taking any other precautionary measures, you should first, take inventory of your valuables, documenting them with photos or videos and noting the approximate value and date of purchase. This level of detail will be helpful should you need to file an insurance claim following storm-related damage to these valuables. Next, if a storm is on the way that will likely cause damage to your home, protect your valuables by storing them in waterproof containers. In more extreme scenarios, consider sending them to a trusted friend or family member who live out of the storm’s path.
- Stock up on severe weather supplies: When a summer storm leaves you housebound, make sure you’ve stockpiled things like blankets and flashlights to be used in the event of a power outage, extra batteries, and food – preferably nonperishable items.
- Review your insurance policies: If you’re unfamiliar with what your policy covers, review your policy and contact your insurance agency with questions as soon as possible. It’s important to understand exactly what damage will be covered following a severe storm.
After the storm has passed, American Advantage Lindow Insurance customers can initiate the claims process in a matter of minutes by calling their trusted agent, who then files a claim on their behalf. With home insurance from Lindow Insurance, rest assured that your home, adjacent structures, and personal property are protected, no matter what the weather throws at you. Learn more by contacting us today or request a quote here.