Top Necessary Features for Homes in Hurricane Risk Areas

The coastline along the Atlantic Ocean and the Gulf of Mexico is a beautiful place to live. But one big drawback of living in paradise is dealing with hurricane season. Homeowners, prospective buyers, and their real estate agents should consider how best to safeguard homes and property from hurricanes and tropical storms. Here are the top features you need to secure a home from extreme weather.

1. A Roof that Protects the Home

High winds threaten the roof. Losing a roof is catastrophic to the integrity of a house and the belongings within. When buying a home, the inspector will give information on the age and condition of the roof. In the hurricane belt, there may be additional strengthening of the roof, but local housing codes vary. A real estate agent can be an advocate for a seller or buyer by communicating the value of a safe, secure roof. 

The most affordable and convenient time to improve the bulwarking of a roof is when you're replacing the roof. Such an investment may seem excessive, but over time the improvements will pay for themselves. Also, a better roof may increase its final sale price. Of course, increasing the stability of a roof is priceless in terms of protecting a homeowner and their family. 

2. Windows that Can Withstand the Wind

While in an emergency, homeowners may want to board up their windows. However, such a strategy is only viable during evacuation. That is why there have been innovations in making windows more resistant to wind. In fact, hurricane-grade windows can withstand winds of up to 150 miles an hour, which is a Category 4 hurricane.

3. Ties or Clips to Guide Wind Away

Gale or hurricane-force winds may seem like an unstoppable force. The pros advise the use of ties or clips that might guide wind away from you. These products can tie your home down can protect your property. It's possible your home already uses these ties or clips if you live in Florida in a home built after 2002. The metal plates connect your roof and outer walls to the foundation. And these ties direct wind in a way that prevents your house from sliding.

4. Sturdier Materials for Better Durability

A home is only as strong as its materials. Therefore, some recommend you use plywood instead of oriented strand board sheathing (OSB). After Hurricane Andrew in 1992, inspectors said plywood was a better material. Plywood has many advantages, including being more lightweight and moisture-resistant, which is important in a tropical storm or hurricane. Plywood strengthens the home and prevents flying debris from damaging the structure. 

5. Doors That Won't Shatter

Doors are a weakness when it comes to hurricane winds. Make sure every door is secured and won't shatter. Garage doors are an important weak spot and may not withstand a hurricane. Losing a door is a major problem because winds can come into the home and then the roof tear away from the home and be destroyed. Make sure the garage door can hold up to major winds. 

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