This story is part ofCNET’s collection of practical tips for making the most of your home, inside and out.
Hurricane season will likely be busier than usual again this year, according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. NOAA Climate Prediction Center Estimated 65% chance of an “above normal” hurricane season in the Atlantic.
Hurricanes and other major storms are among the most widespread natural disasters and pose a serious danger to anyone in their path. There is an average of about 12 named storms per yearBetween hurricanes and tropical storms. Unfortunately, we can’t predict when they will strike.
However, there is hurricane season during which severe storms are expected, and September is the most likely month for a hurricane. Hurricane season varies in different parts of the country, according to Ready.gov:
- Eastern Pacific: May 15 to November 30
- Atlantic: June 1 – November 30
- Central Pacific: June 1 to November 30
We’ve rounded up some steps you can take to prepare for hurricane season and help protect your family and home. For more disaster preparedness tips, check out our guide toAnd the And the .
Make a contingency plan
One of the most important steps in preparing for hurricane season is to create a contingency plan for your family, including an evacuation route.
First, know earlyDuring a hurricane and how you will receive emergency alerts. Know where you will go, as well as the evacuation route you will take, if necessary.
Your plan should also include any special measures necessary to care for children, pets, or family members with mobility issues. Additionally, make a plan for any family members who need special medications or medical equipment.
Before hurricane season, make sure everyone in the household understands the plan, children included.
secure your home
With hurricane season approaching, take steps to secure your property against potential hurricanes and high winds. Some steps you can take include:
- Pruning trees to remove weak branches
- Install hurricane doors
- Install storm shutters on windows
- Replace the outer glass with tempered glass
- Make a plan for outdoor furniture, plants and toys in a pot
Prepare the emergency bag
The last thing you want to do when a hurricane approaches is rush to find everything you may need in the coming days. While that,Or go to the bag you can refer to. Your emergency kit could include:
- Non-perishable food
- bottled water
- extra batteries
- portable radio
- First Aid Equipment
- pet food
- phone chargers
- Basic hygiene items
Check your insurance documents
Before hurricane season every year is a good time to review your insurance policies and make sure you are fully covered in the event of an accident.
First, you must ensure that your current coverage is sufficient to rebuild your home and replace all of your personal belongings in the event of a personal loss. You should also make sure you have the types of coverages that are specifically needed for hurricanes: flood insurance and storm insurance.
If you live in a hurricane-prone area, make sure you get the necessary coverage. Understand the deductible and keep enough in a savings account to cover it in the event of a loss.
Keep an inventory of your belongings
If you live in an area prone to hurricanes and at risk of damage to your home, be sure to keep a running inventory of your personal belongings.
If there is a storm and you have to file a homeowners insurance claim, you will have to submit a list of items that were destroyed. The faster you can provide this information to the insurance company, the faster your claim will be settled and you can begin to recover.
To create your inventory, simply go from room to room and add each item to a spreadsheet. Include the value of each item in case you have to make a claim. For valuable items, you can also include photos or purchase receipts.
Make sure your inventory is stored digitally – there are apps that will help you do that. You should also update it every year before hurricane season.
Keep important documents in a safe place
If you’re storing important documents in your home in paper form, it’s time to find a new strategy. First, make sure that every important document is in a safe, waterproof, and fireproof location in your home.
Next, make sure that each document has a digital copy so that if your home is destroyed and your safe cannot be recovered, you still have copies of everything. (We also have tips for).
Important documents to keep safely include:
- Birth certificates
- marriage certificates
- Social Security Cards
- Military service records
- insurance policies
- tax data
- health records
- financial records
Keep a checklist of hurricanes on hand
When a hurricane hits, fear and adrenaline can make it easy to forget the steps to take. Before hurricane season arrives, prepare a checklist of exactly what you will do and what to pack in the event of a hurricane. That way, if there’s a storm, you can go back to your list instead of trying to remember every important step yourself.
It’s impossible to prevent a tornado, but you can take steps to keep your family safe in the event of a hurricane. For more preparation for hurricane season, check out our listTo help you prepare for, weather and recover from a hurricane.