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Jun-24-2021 14:15printcomments

How to Better Prepare Your Property for Natural Disasters

Limit the amount of damage involved with severe weather events

Wildfire Oregon
Red sky in broad daylight during the wildfires.
Salem, Oregon (9/2020)
Photo by Bonnie King, Salem-News.com

(SALEM, Ore.) - After witnessing the destructive wildfires in the West and hurricanes in the Southern coasts of the United States, you may have wondered if there is any way to protect your home or business from these natural disasters.

Although building an impenetrable fortress is impractical and likely expensive enough to be impossible, there are certainly steps you can take to reduce your risks of house fires or limit damage from severe thunderstorms and flooding.

Here are some ways to better prepare your property for extreme weather.

Use a Top-Down Approach

Starting by strengthening your roof and progressively moving down to your foundation is a good way to ensure your home can handle severe winds, hail, or thunderstorms.

Metal roofs are a good choice since they are long-lasting, reduce the risk of house fire, and can survive thunderstorms more effectively than traditional roofing materials like wood or plastic.

Also, metal roof repair is often much simpler and cheaper than wood or plastic repair, making it a good investment in the event of a severe natural disaster.

Choose the Right Foundation

If you live in areas that are at risk for hurricanes or flooding, choosing to build your property on stilts can help protect you and your belongings.

Stilt houses (or “pile dwellings”) are houses built on top of tall wood stilts, and can even be built in the water due to their height off the ground.

Although your stilt property might not survive bad hurricanes, it is certainly capable of reducing the risk of flooding, making it a great choice for lake houses or properties where floods are common.

If you live in areas where earthquakes are common, utilizing earthquake-resistant materials like steel-reinforced concrete or building on top of flexible pads designed to absorb an earthquake’s vibrations can help protect your home.

However, if your foundation does get damaged, choosing specialized foundation repair experts is a good way to ensure your foundation is better prepared for the next earthquake.

Choose High Coverage Insurance

Although insurance can be costly, it can save your home or business if you suffer from a natural disaster.

However, basic homeowners insurance options often do not cover severe weather like hurricanes or earthquakes, so purchasing additional endorsements or specific catastrophe insurance can be necessary if you live in areas at high risk for those events.

Businesses also need additional insurance endorsements to cover natural disasters, because those are rarely included in regular business property insurance.

Purchasing insurance for your high-value belongings can also be a great way to prepare for natural disasters.

Conclusion

All in all, although completely protecting your property from any disaster mother nature throws at you is impossible, there are definitely some easy steps you can take to limit the amount of damage (and expenses!) involved with severe weather events.

Reinforcing your roof and choosing the right foundation setup and materials can help your property better withstand physical damage. In combination with safeguards like high coverage insurance, these methods can help prepare your property for both large and small natural disasters.

Source: Salem-News.com Special Features Dept.

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