As we enter the summer season, the severity and frequency of bad weather is anyone’s guess. But, inevitably, a lot of homeowners end up dealing with property damage as a result of storms.
The most common type of property damage we see is roof and siding damage following heavy winds and hail.
And while you can’t control the weather, there’s still a lot you can do to protect your home and your family. And bonus! Most of what we’ll discuss in this article will also help protect your neighbors’ homes and property!
Basic upkeep goes a long way to minimize damage. Here are some easy precautions you can take during storm season:
1. Replace Missing or Damaged Shingles
Damaged shingles are more likely to break free. Missing shingles leaves a gap for wind to get under and do even more damage.
Note: When you’re installing or replacing shingles, they must be nailed properly — NOT above the nail line.
2. Repair Loose Siding
The same rules as roofing apply to siding: it’s important to ensure your siding isn’t damaged.
3. Keep Your Gutters Clear and Ensure Water can Flow Away from Your Home
Make sure your downspouts flow away from your foundation and gutters are free-flowing.
Since water damage caused by flooding is one of the quickest ways to devalue your home, ensuring your gutters are clear is a great first line of defense in helping water to flow away from your home.
Equally as important— the grade of your lot should keep water flowing away from your home and into a ditch, drain, or some other proper retention area.
5. Keep Your Sump Pump in Working Order
Before spring rains start up, double check that your sump pump is in working order. If you want to feel extra-secure, having a backup sump pump is a great way to prevent basement flooding.
6. Ensure Proper Sealing of Doors and Windows
Wind only needs a small opening to get underneath something like a shingle or siding and rip it off. And in the event of severely high winds, a small opening in your windows or doors could enlarge and allow enough wind inside to damage your home’s roof.
7. Check for Loose Fence Posts
Wind will surprise you. Anything that’s not nailed down is a liability, and that includes fence posts, which are often forgotten or ignored in homeowner’s storm-prep.
Give each post a strong shake to check for loose ones.
8. Regularly Trim Your Trees
Problem tree limbs can damage your home, vehicles, or even your neighbor’s property. Having your trees regularly trimmed is a great way to protect your roof and windows.
9. Identify Items that Could Become Projectiles
Walk around your property and check for things that could be thrown in the wind, like lawn furniture, tools, flower pots, or other yard debris. When you know a storm is coming, do yourself a favor and move those items to a garage, shed, or indoors.
10. Keep a Generator On Hand
A bad storm could potentially knock out power to your home for a couple of hours — or days. Having a generator on standby could go a long way towards ensuring you don’t lose your food, or the livability of your home until power is restored.
Lastly, don’t forget to protect people.
Your home and the things inside are replaceable. Your family isn’t. Have a storm safety plan in place, including a safe location to go, like a basement, to ride out the worst storms.
Every year, storm season brings a lot of uncertainty, but that doesn’t mean there’s nothing you can do about it.