Hurricane season officially starts on June 1 and officially ends on November 30 each year. However, storm formation is possible at any time. For a landlord, rental property is one of your largest investments, so protecting it from natural disasters is probably one of your top priorities. Now is a great time to prepare before the storm strikes.
2020 HURRICANE SEASON AND 2021 PREDICTIONS
The 2020 Atlantic hurricane season was the most active and the fifth costliest Atlantic hurricane season on record. The season featured a total of 30 named storms. 13 developed into hurricanes, and six further intensified into major hurricanes, with one attaining Category 5. According to Colorado State University, the 2021 Atlantic hurricane season activity is projected to be well above normal, calling for 17 named storms, eight hurricanes, and five major hurricanes. Preparation is key to successfully protecting your assets. Here are three ways landlords and rental property owners can prepare for the 2021 hurricane season.
REVIEW YOUR INSURANCE POLICY
The best time to review and become familiar with your insurance policy is before a hurricane hits. Often, basic property insurance will not suffice for storm damage. Does the property have flood insurance? Wind insurance? These types of coverages are typically not included in a businessowners policy for rental properties. Talk to your Millers Mutual insurance agent in advance of a storm to make sure you have adequate coverage for your property. Have your insurance declaration page ready and contact your agent with any questions before a storm makes landfall.
Additionally, encouraging your residents to get their own coverage if they don’t already have it is ideal. The property’s insurance policy (BOP) won’t cover their personal belongings in the event of a natural disaster—Renters Insurance would take care of that.
PROTECT YOUR PROPERTY
The required level of storm preparation for your rental property will vary depending on the severity of the storm, but there are some tasks that you can do before a hurricane hits to help your property withstand the storm.
- Secure outside fixtures or bring them indoors (grills, patio furniture, plants)
- Clean the gutters and storm drains to ensure water can drain properly
- Check that trees are properly trimmed, and loose branches are removed
- Check the roof for leaks or loose shingles
- Consider having storm shutters installed for windows and doors
- Keep swimming pools filled to 12 inches below the edge, cover pumps, and
- turn off the electricity
- Consider a generator
COMMUNICATE WITH YOUR RESIDENTS
Keeping your residents safe is important when you’re a landlord. It’s a good idea to reach out to your residents with information about how they can prepare for a hurricane, the emergency supplies they should have, and resources in the event a hurricane takes place. And don’t forget to ask your residents to keep in touch during a storm regarding their safety and any property damage they may find.
As a landlord, hurricane season can be intimidating, but you can protect your residents and your property with these simple tips. Find a Millers Mutual Agent to discuss your property insurance needs today: https://millersmutualgroup.com/find-an-agent/.