Healthy parent How to prepare your home for storms January 18 2022
Trudie McConnochie Trudie McConnochie Writer

In Australia, it’s also not uncommon for short-lived storms packing plenty of punch to appear out of nowhere, in any corner of the country. And when they do, it can pay to act quickly to help protect property and possessions.

While home insurance can be handy whenever the unexpected strikes, remembering these three tips can help prepare your home or apartment ahead of a severe storm showing up.

1. Secure any loose objects around your house

Backyards and balconies are often home to bits and bobs that can either get moved around in strong winds or suffer damage from heavy hailstones.

If you have a yard, carefully relocate things like furniture, pot-plants and kids’ toys including trampolines into a shed or garage and away from the elements beforehand. If moving them isn’t an option, tie or weigh these types of objects down to better secure them.

If you live in an apartment, balconies can be more prone to stronger wind gusts – meaning loose items can blow into windows or, worse still, become projectiles that can cause serious injury or damage to people and property below. Bring any items you can inside, otherwise pack down what you can and store your stuff safely in a protected corner.

tree falls on house damaging roof

2. Check drains and gutters ahead of time

We’ve all seen footage and photos of poorly drained subways and roadways which, in just a matter of minutes, become waist-deep waterways after a heavy downpour. Well, the same sort of thing can happen at home if a storm’s torrential rain has nowhere to go.

Especially during autumn and winter, when a lot of leaves can gather in a short space of time, regularly check the gutters along the roofline of your house are clear. If drainpipe openings are blocked before a proper drenching hits, water can not only put pressure on the gutters, but also spill into your ceiling cavity if your roof has undetected gaps or broken tiles – potentially causing damage inside your home.

Similarly, check that stormwater drains in your garden, driveway and entertainment areas are also debris-free. While they’re designed to clear large volumes of rainwater quickly, they can cause flooding in short space of time if they’re blocked.

3. Park your car out of harm’s way

While they’re not technically part of a house, a lot of Aussies have one or two cars parked outside the family home either in the driveway or street – two exposed locations where storms can often cause damage to vulnerable sets of wheels.

Depending on the severity of the storm that’s approaching, including where you live, it can be a wise move making sure your car’s ready to go should escaping your property quickly yet safely because necessary.

With that in mind, always try and avoid parking beneath large trees where there’s a risk a limb could fall onto your vehicle. Also, in the event of hailstones or flying debris, an all-body car cover can offer an extra layer of protection.

Finally, your car’s normally left outside in the elements, having suitable car insurance may help you get back on the road sooner after a serious weather event.

Get cover you can count on. Learn more about Bupa Home Insurance today.

storm rolls in over a suburb
 
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Trudie McConnochie Trudie McConnochie Writer Trudie McConnochie is a Sydney-based journalist who specialises in health, wellbeing and spirituality. http://www.bom.gov.au/weather-services/severe-weather-knowledge-centre/severethunder.shtml

https://www.qld.gov.au/emergency/dealing-disasters/prepare-for-disasters/prepare-home

https://www.ses.nsw.gov.au/storm-resources/before-a-storm/prepare-your-home/

Bupa Home and Car Insurance is distributed by Bupa HI Pty Ltd ABN 81 000 057 590 an authorised representative of the issuer, Insurance Australia Limited ABN 11 000 016 722 AFSL 227681, trading as CGU Insurance. Any advice is general only and does not take into account your personal circumstances. Consider the Product Disclosure Statement (PDS) and Target Market Determination (TMD) at bupa.com.au to see if these products are right for you.