When hurricane season hits (June 1-Nov. 30), you want to be prepared. Whether you live in Florida, Louisiana, Texas, or another hurricane-prone state, prepare your family, your house, or your mobile home, including your roof and windows, for a hurricane with this list from Direct Auto.
How to Prepare for Hurricane Season
Mark your calendars! Atlantic hurricane season runs from June 1 through November 30. Get ready with this handy hurricane preparedness checklist.
1. Plan Your Evacuation Route
- Familiarize yourself with your area’s evacuation route and shelter location.
- Identify a safe space in your home, ideally a small, interior, windowless room on the lowest level that is not at risk for flooding.
- Sign up for emergency alerts at ready.gov/alerts.
2. Stock an Emergency Kit
Avoid the mad dash to the stores by always keeping an emergency kit on hand with enough supplies to last at least three days, taking each of your family member’s needs into consideration. Your emergency kit should include:
- Candles or lamps with fuel
- Basic tools and supplies, such as a tarp, plywood, wrench, hammer, etc.
- Three days’ worth of clean drinking water, per family member
- Prescription medication
- Non-perishable food
- Pet food and supplies
- First-aid supplies
- A portable radio
- Change of clothes
3. Prepare Your Home
When a storm is approaching, it’s time to batten down the hatches.
- Put boards or storm shutters over windows. Don’t use tape—it doesn’t actually prevent windows from breaking.
- Lay down sandbags.
- Clean out drains and gutters.
- Bring loose items inside, such as patio furniture, garbage cans and outdoor décor.
- Turn your freezer and refrigerator to the coldest setting and open only when necessary. Keep a thermometer inside your refrigerator to check food temperature once power is restored.
4. Gather and Review Important Documents
When your important documents are stored in the same place, you’ll have one less thing to worry about if you ever need to evacuate your home.
Take Inventory of Your Personal Belongings
Knowing what property is in your possession ensures that you have enough homeowners or renters insurance to repair or replace your belongings. Take photos of the things you care about and compile them in a spreadsheet. This can also speed up the claims and disaster relief application processes.
Protect Important Documents
Store birth certificates, social security cards, personal property inventory and other important documents safely, or create password-protected digital versions. Should you have to evacuate your home, take hard copies with you.
Review Your Insurance Policy
Your homeowners insurance policy can cover the cost of temporary repairs and additional living expenses, but it won’t cover flood damage. Flood insurance is a smart investment, but most policies take 30 days to go into effect.
If you live near the coast, you may need an additional policy that provides coverage for wind and wind-blown water damage. Contact your insurance agent to learn how you’re protected and add coverages to your policy.