Between June 1st and November 30th, the Atlantic hurricane season sweeps through the East Coast of the United States and neighboring Caribbean islands. While most Floridian residents consider this annual hurricane season to be a norm and an aspect that comes with living on this vacation paradise peninsula, tropical storms and hurricanes alike are a danger to both the people and their properties.
Preparing your investment home for the hurricane is an important task. It can not only reduce the damage to your property but potentially avoid it altogether, and in the most extreme cases. Adequate preparation is a determining factor when it comes to minimizing the effect that strong winds, rain, and flying debris can have on you and your property.
Also, hurricane season should not deter the travelers from taking that well-deserved vacation. While the potential of a tropical storm should be considered when planning your next getaway, given the frequency of this event in Florida and surrounding regions, most hotels and short-term rental companies have preparations in place in case of a hurricane warning happening during your trip.
Orlando Short Term Rentals prides themselves in putting guest and real estatesafety at the forefront of their preparation when an announcement of a hurricane or a serious tropical storm is made. Below is a basic list of what you or your property manager need to do when it comes to preparing the guests and vacation rental property for the hurricane.
Sealing The Windows and Doors
We’ve already discussed that flooding is a byproduct of the hurricane and could cause more damage than the hurricane itself. To prevent water from entering and damaging your home, you need to ensure that all windows and doors are properly sealed and there is no room for a leak. If you do not have time for repairs, using plywood to cover both windows and doors can be a temporary, though not ideal, solution.
Creating an Emergency Home Kit
Preparedness is key to successfully surviving a hurricane. While most tropical storms that pass through are limited to heavy winds and rain, it is never a bad idea to be prepared for the unexpected. To ensure that you and your loved ones are taken care of during this time, create an emergency home kit ready for both evacuation and being stranded at home for an extended period of time.
In your emergency kit should be necessary survival items such as flashlights, batteries, battery-powered device chargers, first-aid kit, non-perishable food items, water, medicine, and other essentials.
Pro Tip: Be ready for an evacuation by stocking up your car with the same supplies and ensuring your tank is full. Fuel is scarce during an emergency.
Preparing for Water and Power Outages
Power outages are very common during thunderstorms and especially hurricanes. To ensure that you’re not stranded in complete darkness, we advise you to invest in a small generator for your property. Not only will it keep the lights on, but you can potentially preserve your food. To further preserve your food, turn your refrigerator to the lowest temperature to keep food cool longer. If you spot water or flooding during the storm, make sure to turn your power off.
To prepare for a water outage, stock up on bottled water and fill empty containers with fresh clean water that you can then use for bathing, cleaning, and cooking.
Pro Tip: Water sells out quickly, so make sure to stock up early!
Protecting the Valuables
Water and flooding are the number one cause of damage during the hurricane. It can ruin your furniture, carpet, appliances, but most importantly it can damage guests’ important documentation and devices. Leave for the guests some waterproof containers; so, they can store their valuable documents such as passport. While a simple zip-lock bag will do the trick for the paper goods, the devices might need a larger-sized alternative. Luckily, there is a variety of tight-sealed containers available for purchase that can fit guests’ laptop, tablet, and phone amongst many other valuables.
Identifying a Safe Space for the Guests.
As the fast winds pass through the area, they pick up many objects along the way. This flying debris can result in shattered windows and the neighbor’s lawn chair in your living room. Your guest could find themselves in the living room at the same time the chair does. A key part of preparing for a hurricane is identifying the safest location in the property that occupant take shelter in. Away from doors and windows, the closet is one of the safest places in your home. During the most intense part of the hurricane, your guestsmay seek shelter there to avoid injury.
Being prepared can make a world of a difference when it comes to the experience with mother nature. What most Floridians see as just another hurricane season is a force to be reckoned with. Vacation rentals owners need to take all of the necessary precautions to ensure the safety of the guests and the property.