Second Home Insurance
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May 19, 2023

Hurricane season is coming... Is your coastal home protected?

Do you have a vacation or a second home on the water? If you do, and especially if it’s located on the Atlantic coast, it’s time to start thinking about hurricanes, because while swimsuit season is on the way, hurricane season is on the way, too.

Although some coastal vacation homeowners prefer to stay up north during the warmer, early months of hurricane season - which officially starts June 1 and ends November 30 - it’s still critical that houses on the coast stay protected against these potentially deadly and incredibly damaging storm systems.

It’s also important to carry the right insurance policy for your coastal home. After all, it’s your haven for relaxation and a welcome retreat during the winter months, when it’s cold and dreary in the Queen City.

To help you stay confident that your oceanfront home will remain safe during hurricane season, we’ve put together a list of essential steps to take to keep it protected when the storms roll in.

First and foremost: The right insurance is critical to protect your coastal home during hurricane season.

Your first line of protection to keep your coastal property safe should be having the right insurance policy, as well as a trusted insurance carrier.

Make sure your policy has comprehensive coverage
Do you know exactly what’s covered (and what is not covered) in your current hurricane insurance policy? If you don’t, now is the time to go over it with your agent, and add additional coverage, like wind damage protection, for example.

Take inventory of your property
Document everything valuable in your beachfront home. Take photos of these items, and have an itemized list stored on your computer (with a backup copy, just in case). A list can be very helpful when it’s time to file a claim.

Protect important documents
Know how and where to access your insurance policy quickly. Make sure it’s stored on your computer (and have a printed version in a well-protected place as well). The same goes for birth certificates, passports, other valuable documents and government-issued items.

More steps to get your home ready for a hurricane.

Enlist help
Find a neighbor or hire a property management company that can perform the necessary tasks to protect your home while you’re away. Make sure to communicate with them before, after, and even during the storm, if possible. This is critical if you’re away from your property during the storm.  

Install hurricane shutters
Hurricane shutters can help protect your windows during high windstorms. Made from incredibly durable materials, these shutters protect glass from flying debris, rain, damaging wind and hail.

Clear the gutters
If your property has been unoccupied for a while, you’ll want to make sure the gutters have been cleaned and cleared of debris. Hire a roofing company if possible or, if a property management company maintains your property, make sure they perform this task as well.

You’ll also want to make sure the downspouts are cleared and that they are well positioned so that they move rainwater and debris away from the house.

Secure yard furniture
Bring every outdoor item that you can indoors, whether its outdoor lawn and deck furniture to potted plants. Can’t bring them inside? If so, make sure that everything is secured and covered.

Have flashlights and batteries on hand
If you lose power during the storm, you’ll need flashlights to see. Have several on hand, and batteries, too. If you’re not on the property, make sure whoever is checking it knows how and where to access the flashlights (and batteries).

Additionally, if you have a generator, you’ll want to make sure it’s working. Same for any battery powered devices that you need, including (and especially) medical devices.

Stock the first aid kit
If you’re planning on being at your waterfront home during the hurricane, or if others will be on the property, make sure that you have a well-stocked first aid kit at the ready. Also, have enough of your prescription medications to last you at least a few days.

The team at Roehr Insurance Services Agency is here to help make sure your coastal home stays protected during hurricane season and beyond. If you have a vacation home on the water, give us a call. We help many Cincinnati second homeowners keep their vacation property safe, and can help yours stays safe from storms, too.

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