Disaster Protection

 

Buying a home is a big step in everyone’s life. The need for shelter as a human being is strong, but you aren’t just buying shelter when you sign those papers. Homes are a place where you can find protection from the physical threats that are out there as well as the emotional ones as well. They are a place where you can make memories, a place where you can feel safe, and a place that you can all your own. Unfortunately, though, homes are not indestructible. There are forces in this world that can do both major and minor damage to your home without much warning, so it is best to be ready for when they hit. While there is no way to prevent a disaster, there are some ways that you can increase your home’s chances of surviving. There are no bulletproof methods out there for protecting your home from danger, but you can at least try and stack the deck in your favor.

It is important to remember though that these ideas we are presenting to you today are not guarantees. Even if you do all the things listed here, your home may still be damaged by a disaster. So, be sure to keep learning new ways to protect your home, and always get help from a professional before undergoing any projects.

Buy Homeowner’s insurance

Homeowner’s insurances is your home’s first line of defense against disaster. The insurance, however, won’t really help you prevent against disaster, but it will definitely help you out if there is one. You see, the insurance you pay every year goes to a fund that will pay for damages sustained due to disasters. Specifics will need to be clarified by a professional, so be sure to talk to an insurance agent before going any further with this.

Be sure that when you do get insurance you make sure that the most likely disasters to happen in your area are explicitly listed in the contracts and policies.

Floods

Flooding can be a dangerous nightmare for anyone involved. However, the ones that feel the effects of the flood the most would have to be homeowners. Whether you live on a coastline or in a desert you are always at risk of flooding. There are flash floods, dams that break, and unforeseen weather changes that can cause your home to be taken by water. Luckily, there are a few steps you can take to put yourself in a better position.

The first thing you can do is to make sure you don’t buy or build in a flood plain. This will do you a lot of favors if there happens to be a flood. Floodplains are the natural path of water in an area. Try not to live there. If that is not an option, then try and buy property that is on a hill, or at least property where the house is raised a bit from the surrounding area. This will make your house much less likely to be flooded.

Another thing to think about is flooding coming from your sewers. In old and new homes, plumbing and sewer systems have wreaked havoc time and time again. So, what is the best way to combat this? Well, one of the best things you can do is to have your plumbing checked up on by a professional once or twice a year. This will allow you to make sure there are no problems in the plumbing that could lead to a bad disaster later on down the road.

Fires

The next disaster on our list is fire. Fires can strike at any time to anyone. It doesn’t matter if your house is 2 feet deep in snow or in the middle of a rain storm, house fires are real threats to your home. Now, we don’t want to seem like we are blowing this out of proportion, but fires can do some serious damage to a home. One bad fire can mean that you don’t have a house at all in fact.

The main cause of fires in homes is caused by improper handling of an open flame. So, the best thing you can do is to practice proper protocol when it comes to fires. On top of that, you may consider using candle warmers instead of lighting your candles.

The other thing you can do is to try and buy a house that is not too close to other houses or forests. If you build or buy a home that is too close to another building or a forest then you run the risk of a fire jumping from said building or forest to your home. While this isn’t always doable, try to keep an eye out for it. Once you buy or build your house though, try and move trees and bushes away from the house so that there is less flammable material around to light if there is a fire nearby.

Earthquakes

Earthquakes can be devastating to a community, affecting everyone differently. For homeowners, a bad earthquake can even cost them their homes. Due to this high cost, it is best for homeowners to prepare as best they can for an earthquake.

If at all possible a homeowner should look into earthquake-proofing their homes. This will take the work of a professional so it would be best to do research on who best to contact in your area. Earthquake proofing a building take a lot of work but it is worth it if you live in an area with frequent or potentially devastating earthquakes.

In the meantime, it is best you work on doing a few things that will help you out. In most cases, fires that start as a result of an earthquake are due to water heaters and other gas powered appliances. Because of this, you should look into securing your water heater and all other appliances like this. There are specific ways you need to do this so be sure to talk with a professional.

Blizzards

Idaho is a cold state, there is no getting around it; and while it is common to see some crazy blizzards here, they don’t happen too often in the Treasure Valley. This is thanks to the dryer climate of Boise. However, it is important to remember that even if you buy a home in Boise, Meridian, Eagle, etc. you should still prepare for a blizzard. Prepare for the worst and hope for the best.

For a homeowner, a blizzard, or even just heavy snow, can be bad news. Under the weight of a lot of snow, roofs can collapse, sidewalks and driveways can become hard to move through, pipes can burst, and your heater can get worn out. However, there are a few things you can do now to prepare for a blizzard that will make things run a whole lot sooner when the time comes.

Before you do anything though, it is important to have the right kind of clothes to handle the cold weather. During a blizzard, if you are not properly bundled, you can get frostbite, hypothermia, or even die. So, the best thing to do is get some good thick insulated boots, a warm coat and gloves, snow pants, and a hat and scarf. If you are looking here in Boise, one good place to check out is the army surplus store. They have plenty of great stuff for a great price.

Next, there is the gear. Your basic blizzard prep list would definitely consist of a large, hearty snow shovel, ice melting salt, and if you can swing it, a snow blower. These will give you the ability to clear your driveway and sidewalk and protect you or anyone walking down the sidewalk, from getting hurt. (This is very important for homeowners since they are legally responsible if someone slips and falls on their section of sidewalk).

Next, you will want to find out how much weight your roof can take. Once you know how much that is, keep an eye on the snow and if it looks like it is getting too heavy, do something to remove it. This is best done by a professional so call someone who is trained to come and take care of it for you. You can also install heater cord to the roof that will allow you to melt the snow quickly before it starts to accumulate.

Then, the last thing you need to do is to protect your pipes. The water in your pipes can freeze and burst in the winter unless you properly protect them. To do this, first, find all the pipes in your home that are in uninsulated or unheated parts of the house as well as parts of pipe that are outside the home. Find all of those spaces and measure them. Once you have that measurement go to the hardware store and pick up some pipe insulation. (Explain what you are trying to do to the hardware store people and they will be able to get you the right stuff). Using this insulation, wrap all the pipes that are in those colder areas of your house and property.

After that, you will want to keep your house over 40 degrees Fahrenheit to make sure that all the pipes inside the house don’t freeze either. You will want to do this even if you are not home so that if you aren’t home for a few hours at a time they won’t freeze.

A home is an expensive investment, one that provides you with a place to… well, call home. So it is best to do what you can to protect it. Now, just remember that these disasters aren’t the only things that can hurt your property, and these ideas aren’t the only ways to protect it. So, be sure to do some more research before you stop preparing.

We love houses and homes here at the Hughes Group. If you want to learn more about home ownership, especially in the Treasure Valley, then be sure to give us a call today!

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