Even now flood waters linger a bit in the lowest lying areas; a visual reminder of the unpredictability Hurricane Matthew brought with him as he barreled up the east coast, aimed directly for my home state of North Carolina.
Our county and surrounding counties were broadsided with storm surges, rain, and a flooding Neuse River that crested at 28.31′. Flood stage is at 14′. Many of our folks were rendered helpless. And in the case of flood there is often nothing to do but evacuate and hope for the best. In the case of hurricanes, tropical storms, and coastal fronts, there are some steps that can be taken to secure your home and give you a good nights rest even when Mother Nature is brewing one up outside. Aside from the security measures it makes fiscal sense to prepare, as well. Your house is one of your largest investments so here are 8 things you can do before that first wind threatens to huff and puff and blow you down the block!
REVIEW YOUR INSURANCE POLICY. At this point you are probably saying well, I don’t have insurance. I live in a tiny house. No excuse any longer as a couple of fine firms offer tiny house insurance. Visit Burlingame Insurance Agency to get your tiny house quote immediately!
FIND OUT ABOUT FLOOD INSURANCE. Perhaps the best flood insurance for a tiny house on wheels is to remain mobile or maintain the possibility of mobility and if your area is called upon to evacuate, you take heed and roll out!
TAKE INVENTORY OF YOUR PERSONAL PROPERTY. Make an inventory list of what you have in your home that is covered under your insurance policy. Write down serial numbers. Take photos of appraisal reports and actual items. If you aren’t sure how to take on such a task Know Your Stuff Home Inventory offers an Apple and Android app to help you begin.
SECURE YOUR ROOFING. Get out the ladder, make like Santa Claus, and get up on your rooftop. Have a good look around. If you have shingles, make sure none are already cracked or missing. If you have a product like ONDUVILLA make sure all fasteners are tight and secure. If you have metal, make sure there are no bent pieces that wind can get up under and create a UFO across your yard.
STRAP IT DOWN. This is an especially good step for THOWs. Consider using auger spikes about 36″ to 40″ long. Screw them into the ground completely and then use the top hook portion to secure a ratchet strap to. Throw the ratchet strap over the top of your tiny house to the auger spike head waiting on the other side. Once the two are clipped, start ratcheting up the slack and tightening down your house. It will help tremendously with wind gusts. (an ulterior motive is for tiny houses NOT on wheels and it includes strapping down your house in a mobile home fashion per most municipality regulations.)
SECURE OUTSIDE ITEMS. Remember the scene in Twister where a cow goes flying through the air in front of Bill Paxton’s truck? That could very well be your patio set or Japanese maple planter or any number of items should you choose not to secure them. If it can be picked up and moved about, the wind can do it!
SEAL YOUR WINDOWS AND DOORS. Preparing for a storm is a good time to check all the caulking and sealants around your windows and doors. Exposure to the weather can damage seals over time, allowing sideways-blowing rain to get in during a storm.
PATCH HOLES. Anywhere you may have driven a nail or put in a screw and then removed that fastener, a hole is left. That hole may not seem like much but it is a point of water penetration and can be further enlarged by wind. Go ahead and seal those holes up with some good caulk. If you choose paintable caulk you can paint right over it and no one will be the wiser.
Is this list missing something? What do you do to prepare for a storm? Anything specific because of the size and style of your house?