A natural disaster can strike at any time, and there isn’t much homeowners can do to prepare their residence prior to the event. These disasters come in several forms, including floods, high winds, and tornados. Sadly, the events often result in millions of dollars of damage while displacing countless individuals from their homes.
In certain situations, people can evacuate before a natural disaster, as they had prior warning. This isn’t the case at all times. What should a person do prior to the event to protect the home, and what steps can they take once the threat has passed?
Knowing Where to Focus Efforts
While any natural disaster is hard on the home, certain elements remain most at risk during certain events. For example, the foundation of a home is exposed to the most threat in a flood or torrential rains. On the other hand, the roof becomes most at risk in high winds or a tornado.
When one of these disasters occurs, the roof may peel off the home. When this happens, the homeowner needs to take quick action to protect the structure, its contents, and its occupants. This amazing website provides information on how to prevent this from happening.
Prior to the Storm
When a storm is coming, homeowners should take many steps to protect their residences. Ensure any leaves and debris are removed from the gutters so they can direct water away from the home. Next, pick up any loose items in the yard that may become flying projectiles in high winds.
Any limbs that hang over the home should be removed prior to the storm. The same is true of trees that are in danger of falling on the home. Residents must remain vigilant following the storm, as limbs may come down for hours or days after the main event has passed. Sadly, these limbs have killed individuals going about their normal day.
Taking these steps helps to prevent damage to the roof of the home. Once they have been taken, the homeowner must rely on the roofing materials and the installation quality to do their job and protect the residence. Certain materials hold up better than others under these conditions, and a homeowner who lives in an area prone to natural disasters should invest in quality materials designed for use in their area.
Metal roofs, for example, withstand winds over 100 mph. In contrast, asphalt shingles tend to blow off. Nevertheless, the quality of the installation remains the best protection against roof damage during natural disasters. A roof that has been properly installed according to the manufacturer’s instructions will always fair better in adverse weather conditions than one that hasn’t been installed correctly.
Following the Storm
If a homeowner discovers their roof has been damaged in a storm or other natural disaster, they need to take immediate action to prevent additional damage. Before inspecting the roof to determine the extent of the damage, the homeowner must make certain it is safe to do so. The damage isn’t obvious in many cases but is present. Signs the roof needs attention include damaged or missing shingles, an apparent hole in the roof, or a roof that is partially missing.
Nevertheless, there may be structural damage or smaller penetrations that aren’t readily apparent. In addition, the homeowner may be dealing with a leak that isn’t easily seen. For this reason, it’s best to leave the roof inspection to a trained professional who knows what to look for.
Furthermore, this inspector may be required by the insurance company before they pay a claim. This doesn’t mean, however, that the homeowner can’t examine the roof from the street with the help of binoculars. Doing so gives them a better understanding of the roof’s condition before calling in the pros.
Hire a qualified inspector to take on this task. Don’t rely on someone coming door to door offering their services after a weather event. They may not be around if problems arise once any repairs have been completed. Do research to find the right person for the job.
Look for a licensed inspector with the necessary insurance to work on your roof. Read reviews and check with the Better Business Bureau before allowing them to inspect your roof. This inspection must be detailed and include every part of the roof to ensure no damage goes undetected.
Upon completion of the inspection, ask for their repair recommendations. Obtain quotes from a minimum of three professionals to get a better understanding of what is needed. However, don’t base your decision on which company to hire based on price. The roof functions to protect the home, its contents, and the occupants. This isn’t somewhere you want to cut corners.
Reading the Quotes
Ensure all quotes contain the material that will be used, the work to be completed, and more. For example, one company may use 20-year shingles while another quote includes 30-year shingles. This information is needed during the decision-making process.
In addition, a company may offer a lower price, leading the homeowner to choose them. At the end of the job, the homeowner discovers they are responsible for removing the old shingles from the property. The company doesn’t handle this task, and the price of the roofing job increases because the homeowner now has to pay to dispose of the discarded materials. Review the quote to learn what tasks the roofer will take on and which ones fall on the homeowner.
Repair or Replacement
One thing to consider at this time is whether the roof should be repaired or replaced. Ask this question of any contractor you ask to inspect the roof. This ensures the roof holds up and you don’t find you need additional repairs or a replacement within a few months of the work being completed.
Never wait until a natural disaster to choose a roofing professional. Do research prior to needing the company’s help. This ensures you know who to call in an emergency to protect your home. You will feel comfortable having them work on your home knowing they will do everything possible to keep your family and assets safe. That’s the most important thing.