Even though it is February, spring is just around the corner. In Texas, spring means an increased risk of storms, particularly tornadoes. Even if you don't live in the heart of Tornado Alley, you still might face a risk from these devastating storms.
Tornadoes don't have to touch the ground to create widespread damage. Homeowners throughout Texas likely understand the risks that tornadoes pose to their properties. You should start preparing your home for tornado risks now.
Tornado Prep Tips For Every Home
All homes could sustain damage from tornadoes or other instances of severe weather. If they do, it will likely cost a lot of money to clean up and rebuild. Careful planning might help reduce or avoid damage when tornado strikes.
- Ensure that doors and windows are strong and have reinforcements. Make sure glass panes do not pose risks of shattering as a result of high winds or hail. Install strong locking and hinge systems to protect the items.
- During good weather, inspect the home's roof, chimney and foundation. Problems in these structures might increase the chances of damage during tornadoes. Fix or replace your roof, or have your foundation realigned as needed.
- Clean dead shrubbery away from the home. Dead foliage might easily uproot and become a projectile during high winds. Cut back any trees that overhang the home, as this can help prevent limbs from falling on the roof. If severe weather threatens, move outdoor decorations inside. You don't want them to become airborne.
- Designate a room in your home as a tornado shelter. Basements or storm cellars usually provide the most protection. However, interior rooms, hallways and enclosed bathrooms might also work. The best areas of protection are low, flat places.
- Keep an emergency alert system in your home. Pay attention to weather warnings during severe storms. If a tornado threatens, seek shelter immediately.
Remember, tornadoes might also bring hail, fire and flash flood risks with them. Protect your belongings as best you can during tornadic conditions. The more you can reduce your risks, the better your chances of protecting your home.
The good news is that homeowners insurance often provides coverage for tornado damage. However, all policies are different. Most will include coverage limits and exclusions for certain types of damage.
As you gear up for tornado season, talk to your agent at Texas Insurance Agency. Ask them how your policy will cover severe weather damage. Take the time to make adjustments to your policy if you think you need to.