We all know that it only takes one change in weather, and a tornado can be on our doorstep at any time of year, especially if a hurricane makes landfall somewhere to the south of us.
Tornados don’t give a lot of warning that they’re on the way, and the damage can be surprising and devastating. All anyone can do is be prepared. Here’s what you need to know to prepare your home for a tornado.
Know Where to Go in Your Home
When you know there are storms on the horizon, pay attention to the weather and the news so you can get early warning of potential tornados. The best place to hide during a tornado is in a basement. If that’s not available, an inner hallway is a good alternative. The next option is a small, inner room that has no windows like a bathroom or closet. Make sure everyone in your family knows where to go when a tornado is on the way — before a storm strikes.
Reinforce Your Garage Door
Long before a tornado hits, make sure your garage door is reinforced to withstand wind and debris. A garage door technician can install the reinforcement. It’s recommended that you hire a professional to do this because the door’s counterbalance system may need to be adjusted. This will help protect the door and the contents of your garage.
Install Permanent Storm Shutters
Even if a tornado doesn’t plow through your home, the high winds can still do plenty of damage to windows and doors. Install permanent storm shutters that can protect your windows with a roll down mechanism. You may even consider shutters that operate by motor for quicker protection. When seconds matter, you won’t have time to fumble with covering your windows which makes permanent shutters a good option.
Remove Trees and Other Potential Hazards
During good weather, take a walk around your yard and look for potential hazards. Are there trees that might land on your home if they fall? Do you typically keep garbage cans, tools, and other equipment outside? All of these things can become dangerous during a tornado. Remove trees that are tall enough to land on your house if they come down. Keep smaller objects inside your garage when possible. Make sure outbuildings and storage sheds are properly anchored so they have a better chance of staying put.
Update Your Home Insurance Policy
Even with the best preventative measures, a tornado can still damage your home. The best protection you can have from the high costs of a devastating storm is a good homeowners insurance policy. Each year check in with your independent insurance agent to update your policy limits and make necessary changes so that your entire home is covered. If you do need to rebuild, you need a home insurance policy that will cover the total cost.
Need a quote for a new home insurance policy? Have questions about your existing coverage? Contact Charlotte Insurance today and protect your home and your family.