Now is the time to prepare. Despite the pandemic, Hurricane Season begins June 1st. Wind, rain, rising water, and flooding is coming. Please take time to be ready.
Here are a few tips provided by the City of Houston Office of Emergency Management to help us prepare for this potentially active hurricane season:
- Assess your risk –
- Is your home prone to flooding in previous rain or hurricane events?
- Do you know if your home is currently above the floodplain or was it newly zoned in 2019? right at the floodplain? Many of us in the Gulf Coast Region were surprised in recent years to find out that our homes were suddenly at risk, even though it wasn’t in previous years. Find out where your current or potential home is relative to flood risk. Here’s a Harris County Flood Education Mapping Tool and FEMA Flood Map Service Center for reference, but you should always check with your mortgage lender and insurance agent to confirm.
- Figure out an evacuation plan-
- Know your evacuation zone. During the forecasting and news updates on your news station, they will mention certain zones that need to be prepared to voluntarily or mandatorily evacuate. Find your zone here.
- Decide where you will go during evacuation in advance. Will you stay with family or friends? If you stay in the area, always make sure you know where your local shelters are before the storm. You can start with this Red Cross Shelter Tool, but other places may open as a shelter in your area. Monitor the news and social media for updates.
- Gather Supplies-
- This is a great list to start with on what types of supplies you may need, provided by FLASH (Federal Alliance for Safe Homes)
- DON’T FORGET– This hurricane season we are also dealing with a pandemic. This means that while gathering supplies and considering evacuation options, social distancing may become more difficult in places like shelters or in the homes of others. Because of this, you will want to be sure to include the supplies that help protect you and others from potential COVID-19 infection. You will want to include a cloth mask for everyone, soap, and hand sanitizer. The CDC gives recommendations on face mask options.
- Check on Your Insurance-
- You won’t want to find out after a flood that your insurance doesn’t cover you. Call your agent now to see what is covered and if you need to make changes to your policy for better protection. FEMA outlines your coverage options here.
- Elevating your home significantly reduces your insurance premiums. The NFIP has made multiple changes in recent years, so it is good to take some time to review how these changes affect your family. We offer a free consultation on how we can help you raise your home above the floodplain to help reduce your rates. You can also view our FAQs for answer to common questions about home elevation.
- Protect and Strengthen Your Home-
- FLASH has a few videos that will help you figure out what home protection and preparation steps you can take.
- Elevating your home. Flood mitigation options include addressing drainage issues in many cases. In more vulnerable neighborhoods where drainage mitigation isn’t enough, you may need to elevate your home above the floodplain altogether. You can do this for your slab homes or pier and beam homes. P3 Elevation can elevate homes 1-25 feet above floodplain. Our team can consult with your family to determine what your options are.
Visit the City of Houston Office of Emergency Management Hurricane Preparedness page for more resources and information that you can share with your friends and family.
If you are considering home elevation to keep you and your family or business high and dry forever, reach out to our team for a free consultation here:
Planet Three Elevation. Elevating Peace of Mind.