Hurricane Preparedness For Bonita Springs, Fl Residents
Storm season in Bonita Springs is always something to be planning for. The fact of the matter is that if you live near salt water in the United States you run the risk of being in the path of a hurricane at some point. Bonita Springs is on the water and is only separate by 150 miles of flat land by the next body of salt water. I’ve lived here for about thirty years and have seen a few tropical depressions, tropical storms and even a hurricane or ten. It isn’t as scary to think about if you’ve prepared properly. Here are a few tips for getting your Bonita Springs real estate ready for storm season.
The most important thing you need to know about a hurricane is how to prepare. It’s really not that difficult. Remember the old adage; an ounce of prevention is a pound of cure? It’s similar with hurricanes and wind storms. You have to plan in advance.
Although you likely know you need to get the appropriate insurance for your Bonita Springs home, you also need to know that you cannot get insurance while a storm is “in the box”. “In the box” is a square on an insurance map grid. When the storm is in your box and you don’t have insurance on your Bonita Springs home, you will be uninsured until the storm passes. You’ll need to plan in advance to not only get homeowners insurance but flood insurance, too. The flood insurance policies usually take 30 days to be affective so, again, if a storm is headed your way it had better take 30 days to get to you, or you lose. A great insurance agent can be found by recommendation at the Bonita Springs Estero Community Forum.
To further prepare your home and possibly reduce your insurance costs, you may want to look into a wind mitigation survey. A certified wind inspector can check your home and certify it’s wind rating thereby reducing your premiums. Call for a wind mitigation inspection with a local home inspector or ask your insurance agent for a recommendation.
If you live in a condominium or a shared wall structure, like a villa or townhome you likely have structure coverage and usually have flood insurance which is paid for by the home owners association. If your lender requires you to carry flood insurance be sure to check with the property management company to have them send a copy of the policy to your lender.
You’ll want to make sure you document the contents of your Bonita Springs home by video or photos. Put the images on disc and store it with copies of your policy that you have to remember to take with you if you ever leave the area due to a storm. In a pinch you can take photos with your cell phone. Did you know that your phone service provider can set your phone up to back up photos and documents to Google?
Here is a list of things to do when a tropical storm or a hurricane is affecting SW Florida:
Get your prescription medications filled so you have at a minimum a 14 day supply.
Get enough water for each person in your household to have a gallon per day for up to two weeks.
Cash talks! Go to the bank and get cash. The Visa card machine is electric and power may go out.
Flashlights, candles, Sterno, battery powered radio or TV.
Non perishable food. If the power goes out your fridge isn’t staying cold. Soup, protein bars, peanut butter, nuts, raisins,
Your phones and cell phones won’t work so leave a voicemail greeting that states. “If you are looking for ‘The Jones Family’ you may contact us temporarily through my sister at 202-555-1212. Your worried friends and family can at least check up on you. Naturally, you’ll want to find a way to check in with your sister to let her first know that you’re alright.
If you are a business owner you may want to forward your calls outside of the area so that your business is attended to. Often times other business owners will help in extreme weather conditions.
Pet papers, license, pet food, pet medication back up and the pet!
Here’s a printable checklist from the Bonita Springs Fire Department that you may find helpful to use while preparing for our storm season in Bonita Springs and Southwest Florida. Click here: Hurricane Checklist
For a visual list of great things to line up in the event of a hurricane threat to Bonita Springs click here: (graphic will enlarge)