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Protect your home from loss due to coastal storms

Coastal storms and flooding are a fact of life in the Houston Galveston Areas.

Protect your home from loss due to coastal storms. Although we are nearing the end of the official hurricane season (June 1 through November 30), it shouldn't be the end of protecting your home and property. Any time you build or modify a structure in a coastal community, it's important to prepare yourself for future hurricanes and other treacherous coastal storms.

As we know, our home is usually the biggest investment we make, so it is important that we take the right precautions to protect that investment, whether we are building a new structure or making changes to an existing home.

If you plan to do an extension, install a patio cover or carport, or simply change your windows or doors, you will want to make sure that these changes are done correctly so that there will be less chance of damage in case of a hurricane or other coastal storm. Furthermore if wind damage does occur it is important that these changes are covered by your insurance. In order to be sure that you are covered certain regulations must be followed.

Rather than leaving your home at risk, I recommend you find a contractor who is aware of and follows the wind storm codes so that your home and any additions to your home can be properly insured. Following these codes will mean that your contractor will work with an engineer and ensure that the necessary permits will be obtained. In addition, your contractor will ensure that the proper products are used. Unfortunately, not following the wind storm codes and not getting the necessary inspections will mean that you may not be able to get the proper insurance.

The ramifications of not having wind storm insurance can be great. For example, if you install a beautiful bay window and it is not installed to code and inspected by an engineer, you may not be able to get insurance on that new window. If a hurricane or other coastal storm later causes damage to the window resulting in more damage to your home, it's possible that none of the damage will be covered by your insurance.

In general any new structure, additions to your home, including patio covers, carports, windows and doors should be constructed or installed with hurricanes and other coastal storms in mind.

To protect yourself, your family and your home verify that your contractor has knowledge about wind storm codes, is registered with the city or county, and will get the needed permits and inspections for your project. If you live in coastal area, check with your contractor or insurance company to find out if any work you plan to do will be insurable.

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