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Prepare Your Home for Extreme Summer Weather

We’ve waited a long while for summertime. Huddled around space heaters and fireplaces all winter long, we dreamed of a day we could walk outside in flip flops.

Unfortunately, Mother Nature has some interesting plans this summer.

Droughts in the west, flash flood and tornado warnings across the central US, and hurricane season gearing up in the east. From coast to coast, summer is also the time for extreme weather.

But we still want to enjoy our summer right?

That’s why it’s important to prepare now. Because we may not be able to control or predict serious weather, but we can prepare for it.

What can you do to help protect yourself, your family, and your home from severe weather?

Thunderstorms and tornados:

Between warm air from Texas and cooler trends in the Great Lakes, central and southern mid-Atlantic regions turn into a weather warzone in the summer months. So to prepare:

  • Keep an emergency supplies kit prepped and in the house, filled with water, non-perishable food, first aid kit, blankets and warm clothes, medication and tools to last at least 5 days.
  • Know the safest places to be during a storm, like a basement, shelter, or cellar.
  • Secure your home and reinforce windows with storm shutters. Before a storm hits make sure to bring in anything you keep outside, like lawn chairs or umbrellas.

Hurricanes:

Hurricane season usually hits the coasts around late August or September. We’ve all seen on the news or experienced for ourselves how life changing they can be. So if you live in a coastal town:

  • Take warnings seriously and prepare now. Unlike tornados, hurricanes take time to build and move to land…which gives us some time to get ready.
  • Have an emergency kit and action plan ready.
  • Secure your home and board up windows.
  • Know how to get out of the area if you’re told to evacuate. Even consider evacuating before there is an order to avoid the traffic jams that often result once an order is issued.

Wildfires:

Extreme heat and dryness makes for drought conditions across the west, northwest, and even into Texas. If you live around there, you know full well that droughts can lead to wildfires. But did you know there are ways to defend your home? Strategically landscaping within about 100 feet of your home can direct flames around the house and protect it! Try:

  • Growing more native vegetation
  • Removing dead or dying trees and shrubs
  • Not connecting wood fencing to your home
  • Moving firewood and storage tanks 50 feet from the house, and clearing 10 feet areas around them
  • Trimming branches so they don’t extend over the roof or the chimney

Storms and Flash Floods:

Across the Rockies and along the Mississippi, heavy rain and storms in the summertime can cause flooding. They come on quickly, but there are ways to prepare and help protect yourself and your home:

  • Start by checking your roof and foundation for leaks.
  • French Drains are a good investment, since they divert water away from your property.
  • If water gets in, your best bet is to minimize the damage and protect your valuables. Keep expensive stuff, old family photos, art work, electronics, and your stamp collection elevated and off the ground. Put them on top floors or on shelves or tables.
  • Look into getting Flood insurance, if you don’t already have it. Most likely, your standard Home insurance won’t cover flood damage or replace stuff destroyed in a flood.

Summer is a glorious time of vacations, sunning, and relaxing…and you should all be able to enjoy it! So if you live in an area where severe summer weather is a fact of life, do the prep work now. Make an emergency plan and talk to your family. That way, if disaster strikes, you’re confident and ready…and not spending your summer worrying.