In my last post I talked about preparing a disaster supply kit in case of a hurricane or devastating storm. Today’s post is about getting your home and yard ready for hurricane season.

  • Prune your plants. Make sure your trees, hedges, and shrubs have been cut back properly. Loose branches can become missiles during high winds. Do not leave your clippings or tools in the yard either, for the same reason.
  • Clean your gutters. Gutters and down spouts need to be kept clear and in working order. If they’re not properly secured to your home, they can be swept up by the high winds and cause serious damage or injury. Keeping them cleared out will help reduce the risk of flooding.
  • Cover your windows. Putting tape on your windows does not help much, but storm shutters or plywood ( on the outside of your windows) can keep debris, loose furniture, branches, etc. from flying into your home at dangerous speeds. *Homeowners, remember you can receive a discount on your insurance for preparing your windows.
  • Do NOT lower the water level of your pool. Keep your pool full. If your pool is not full, it can pop out of the ground. Keep it full and super-chlorinated.
  • Replace rock mulch with shredded bark. The latter is lighter and less dangerous.
  • Bring in loose furniture and other outdoor items. If a hurricane watch is issued, bring in loose items from your yard like trash cans, grill, toys, tools, furniture and even bird baths.
  • Brace your garage door. Newer garage doors have to meet strict wind-load requirements, but older doors can be braced with retro fit kits. These are available at most home stores like Lowes.

It’s also very important to carry flood insurance for your home, whether you own or rent the house. To learn more about flood insurance check out this video and call us at 1-888-721-1949. We can also help you set up a windstorm inspection to make sure your home is ready for hurricane season and that you’re getting all the discounts you’re eligible for on homeowners insurance. Pinellas County residents can check out the Emergency Management webpage.