08:49:48 | 2012-10-29
(New York, NY) — This Halloween, New Yorkers are more spooked by the impending monster of a hurricane Frakenstorm than haunted houses and scary costumes. What could go down in history as one the biggest storms to hit NYC, Hurricane Sandy is leaving locals more concerned with protecting their properties than ever before.
With weather advisories warning cities throughout the northeast of potentially the worst storm in 100 years, damages are projected to be upwards of $1 billion. So what does this mean for your home?
In an effort to keep our beloved community of BrokerPulse readers safe and their properties intact, here are some pointers to help prepare for Hurricane Sandy – expected later today.
The first thing you want to take care of is insurance. If you haven’t done so already, make sure your homeowner’s insurance covers your property according to its current market value. It is also important to keep up-to-date on insurance policy assessments, especially for those who have renovated their home.
Additionally, make sure to review whether your coverage covers floods and earthquakes. Often these are only covered by specific natural disaster policies. It would be wise to invest in full replacement or replacement cost coverage to have in the event your home was severely damaged.
For renters, renters insurance is the coverage to consider. Landlord’s policies cover damages of the building but as far as it goes for your personal items you’re on your own. The typical renter’s insurance goes for as little as $100-150 per year in New York and it can go a long way in helping you.
Although Mother Nature can be unpredictable, it is better to be safe than sorry. We advise taking provisions to hopefully minimize potential damage to your property as much as possible.
Take all of your non-secure items outside your home and put them inside your house or garage. Even your vehicle needs to be secure.
Also, pruning nearby trees and trimming branches will help to minimize damage to your roof or power lines. Local utility companies will often cut back tree branches for free if they hang too close to electrical lines, so consider giving them a call.
Inside your home, make sure to move all furniture away from the windows. Cover them up with plywood or have hurricane shutters installed.
To minimize flooding, have all your drains and gutters unclogged. For those with basements susceptible to water, leave nothing on floor. Sometimes the fire department can help pump water out of the basement for you.
Preparing an Emergency Supply Kit is highly recommended. NYC.gov has suggested several items for your kit to help get you through. In it you will need:
1. ONE GALLON OF DRINKING WATER PER PERSON PER DAY
2. A CAN OPENER AND NON-PERISHABLE CANNED FOODS.
3. FIRST AID KIT
5. BATTERY-OPERATED AM/FM RADIO AND EXTRA BATTERIES OR A WIND-UP RADIO
7. PERSONAL HYGIENE ITEMS
8. NON-ELECTRIC PHONE
9. CHILD CARE SUPPLIES OR OTHER SPECIAL CARE ITEMS
Along with your kit, make sure to gather copies of your important documents, an extra set of car and house keys, credit and ATM cards and cash. It is good to have around $50-$100 in cash on hand in the event of an emergency.
Stay connected with what’s going on with the storm so you know what to prepare for. Many people are using sites like patch.com to get the news, comment with relevant information, share photos and videos, and get the word out about what’s going on in different neighborhoods.
Currently, the MTA has temporarily suspended its service and begun the process of securing down Grand Central Terminal. As the storm made its way up the coast, MTA was directed to proceed with the shutdown of bus, subway and commuter rail lines.
People all along the coast are taking precautions necessary to do the best they can to make it through the storm. Listen to suggestions and warnings of local leadership, and most important, stick together. If an evacuation is ordered, then do so. Your life comes before everything else.
It’s only a matter of time before we weather the storm. In the mean time, stay safe everyone!