Hamilton Herald Masthead


Front Page - Friday, March 11, 2016

Preparing your house to weather the storm

Home Builders Association of Greater Chattanooga

Terry Greene

Spring is in the air! The days are a little warmer. The skies seem a bit bluer. And, is that green we see popping through the landscape? The promise of a new, milder season has many thinking about gardens and spring cleaning, but along with the beautiful days ahead will also be some severe weather.

April is traditionally when Chattanooga sees a surge of severe weather, including tornadoes, flooding, and hail storms. While you and your family can evacuate the home during such an event, your house must withstand its wrath.

Don’t wait until a weather event is impending; use the month of March to take the necessary precautions:

Check your insurance policy to ensure you’re covered in the event of a natural disaster. In particular, flooding is generally not covered by homeowners’ insurance and requires a separate policy at a reasonable rate.

Seal your entryways with weather-stripping to prevent wind and water from entering through the cracks around doors and windows. Don’t forget your garage door, too.

Have your roof inspected to ensure its structural integrity. Apply sealant around the chimney and vent pipes to prevent water from seeping in the home during a torrential downpour.

If in doubt, consult a building professional to repair loose siding, remove rotted structures, and determine the structural soundness of your home.

Clean out clogged gutters and downspouts. If the rain that accompanies a heavy storm can’t run through the gutters and downspouts, it will spill over the sides, landing in areas where it can soak through to your home’s foundation, causing flooding and structural damage.

Protect your home from loose objects that take flight during a storm. Remove all dead and dying limbs from your trees. Disconnect and remove exterior television antennas from the roof. Bring inside or secure lawn furniture, trashcans, flowerpots, and other yard ornaments. Tie down the larger items such as sheds, doghouses, playhouses, swing sets, and boats.

When you and your house are prepared, you’re more likely to weather even the toughest Chattanooga storm. Taking time now to prepare your home for storm season could save you a lot of money later.

To find a building professional who can help secure your home before a storm or repair it afterwards, contact the Home Builders Association of Greater Chattanooga at (423) 624-9992 or info@HBAGC.net.