While this is more for my friends and family in Texas, it’s a great reminder for Californians to update their Earthquake kits!
By Stephanie Andre
RISMEDIA, July 22, 2010–It’s hard to believe that it’s already been five years since Hurricane Katrina devoured the Gulf Coast. While hurricanes are not preventable, there are steps you can take to protect yourself and your property should disaster strike.
Here are four important steps to consider, according to the Insurance Information Institute:
STEP #1: Review Your Insurance Coverage
Be sure you have the right kind and amount of insurance, enough to rebuild your home and replace your belongings. Ask about flood insurance, which is not covered under a standard homeowners policy. Learn more about flood insurance at www.floodsmart.gov.
STEP #2: Create a Home Inventory
An up-to-date home inventory will speed up the claims process by substantiating losses and may provide documentation for tax purposes. It can also help you determine how much insurance to purchase. Visit www.knowyourstuff.org to download software to help make this process easier.
STEP #3: Protect Your Property
Keeping wind and water out of your home is critical. Invest in storm shutters and reinforced garage doors. Secure roof shingles and seal any openings, cracks and holes. Gable end walls and roof sheathing should be strongly attached and braced, and double doors should have heavy duty anchors at the top and bottom and a dead bolt at least 1” long.
STEP #4: Have an Evacuation Plan
Decide where you will go and how you will get there, and have more than one option. Keep a map, phone numbers and addresses handy. Think about what you’ll need to take with you — items like medicines, important documents, clothing and food — and have them ready to go.
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