Hurricane season is right around the corner, but the time to prepare is now. If you wait until there’s a storm on the way, it might be too late. Here’s what you need to do now to get your home and your family ready for hurricane season.
Put Together an Emergency Kit
Even small storms can turn dangerous or, at the very least, kill the power to your home for a few days. You may be without power, water, or the ability to use your cell phone for a significant amount of time. Put together your hurricane emergency kit before you need it.
- Non-perishable food items
- Can openers
- Battery-powered radio or TV
- First aid kit
- A place for important papers — you’ll grab these before a storm hits
- Pet supplies
Get Supplies Early
When you know a hurricane is on the way, be ready to get the last minute supplies right away — especially gas for your vehicles and propane or charcoal for your grill. If you go without power, you’ll still be able to cook on a grill. Purchase extra gas containers so you can still drive your vehicle with gas shortages after a storm.
Know How to Keep Your Family Safe
The time to figure out where an evacuation route or local shelter is located is now, long before a storm heads for the Carolinas. Decide what your plan will be if you need to evacuate. For smaller storms, you may decide to go to a local shelter. For bigger storms, decide where you’ll go and find hotels along the route. If you have pets, make sure you know where pet-friendly shelters and hotels are located so you don’t have to face the choice of staying or leaving them behind.
Protect Your Home Before the Storm
Sandbags and plywood can help protect your home when a storm is eminent, but there are things you can do to protect your home long-term, too. Consider upgrading your windows to more wind-resistant options that can handle hurricane force winds. Install storm shutters so you don’t have to fool with plywood or worry that the lumber store will run out before a hurricane. You may also want to consider purchasing a generator. A small one can keep your refrigerator or air conditioner running after a power outage. A whole house generator can keep nearly everything running after a big storm, reducing the chance of additional damage from high humidity or spoilage.
Check Your Insurance Coverage
Not all North Carolina home insurance policies include hurricane coverage. If a storm is headed our way — you may hear this as being “in the box” — a new policy can’t be written until the storm passes. Now is the time to check your insurance policy and understand what it does and doesn’t cover. If you don’t have hurricane coverage, talk to your independent insurance agent about how to include that in your homeowner’s policy.
Getting ready for hurricane season? Not sure what your home insurance covers? Need a quote for a new policy? Contact Charlotte Insurance for a free quote today.