How to Prepare Before a Severe Weather System
If your property has hurricane shutters on site including fabric shield shutters in tubes and metal hurricane shutters
We ask that you install hurricane shutters if the storm path shifts and we return in the projected path again over the weekend.
Installing your Hurricane Shutters
There are multiple types of hurricane shutters, but the most common are the fabric shield (rolled up in skinny tubes) and metal type. Please follow the below instructions: Please remember SAFETY FIRST!!
- Step One: Find the hurricane shutters (laundry room, garage, storage closet/shed, etc.)
- Step Two: Collect tools needed for installation (wing nuts, parts from the hurricane shutters, etc.)
- Step Three: Choose the installation video that fits your type of hurricane shutter
- Step Four: Please inform your property manager that the hurricane shutters have been installed or if youcannot locate them.
- If you think you will need assistance with the installation of the hurricane shutters then let us know so we can inform the owner.
If your property does not have hurricane shutters:
Do not tape your windows! Taping your windows does nothing to protect your property. Tenants who tape their windows will be charged for tape removal.
In the event of a major storm threatening our area, plywood will likely not be available. Additionally, if installed incorrectly or without hurricane clips, the installation of plywood can damage the siding, window frames or exterior of the property. You must have authorization from our office before installing plywood at your property. While we appreciate your concerns to safeguard the property, we must be sure the property owner is okay with installing plywood.
We have special instructions for those properties with private pools.
In the event of a hurricane coming towards the area, we will be asking you to enable the back flow and lower the pool water level to accommodate the rains and flooding from the storm. We will also have pool companies on stand by to assist as necessary before and after a storm if required.
Should a Hurricane or Tropical System Hit the Area (now or in the future)
The National Weather Service will issue a tropical storm or hurricane watch within 24-36 hours of hurricane conditions. Local emergency management advises residents to be self-sufficient for 3-14 days. You must make several preparations to prepare for a storm should it impact our area.
Please review the following information in regards to hurricanes including your obligations in securing the home.
Protecting and Securing your Home
Per your tenant handbook, you are required to protect and secure the home just as the homeowner of the property would. The better you secure your home, the less likely damage will occur to your personal property.
Bring in all outdoor furniture, plants, decorations, garbage cans, and anything else that is not tied down. Any item that is not secured can become a projectile and damage your property. These items, if not removed, can cause serious damage to your home or to a neighbor. This is very important!
Park your vehicles somewhere safe, never under or near trees or in low lying areas prone to flooding.
Before evacuating, you must turn off the power and water supply to the home. Shut off your breakers (except to the fridge unless it is emptied) and turn off all water valves at sinks, the hot water heater, and behind your toilet. Please call your utility company or our office with questions.
Be sure to throw away any perishable items prior to evacuating.
Never leave any type of pets behind if you evacuate. Should you evacuate for a storm, we ask you email our office to notify us. This will help our team complete disaster assessments more efficiently.
Preparations before hurricane
- Plan ahead. If you don't already have a plan, make one right now. It's not too late.
- Listen to the news! Stay informed at all times. Have a battery operated radio and batteries.
- Know your evacuation routes. Determine where you would go and how you would get there.
- Make sure to include your pets in your evacuation plans as most shelters and many hotels do not allow for pets. You cannot leave any pets (including kenneled or caged animals) in your home when you evacuate!
- If you plan on staying in your home, make sure you are prepared with supplies to last 3-14 days. Learn the location of nearby shelters in case you need to leave your home after a storm
- Fill all vehicles with gas and get cash from the ATM
- Locate and secure all important papers, including insurance policies, wills, license, etc.< /span>
- Take inventory of your home! Maintain a written list of your possessions. Be specific and include serial numbers. Document with photos and/or video for your insurance company. (Unfortunately, it is too late to secure renters insurance if you do not already have it.)
- Talk to your children about how and when to call 911.
- Make sure you have an operable fire extinguisher and everyone knows how to use it.
- Establish emergency meeting place in case your family gets separated.
- Be aware of and abide by all evacuation orders, especially in low lying areas and coastal areas prone to flooding.
Safety during Hurricane
- Do not go outside or try to travel during the storm. Stay indoors until the storm is declared over and be weary of the "eye of the storm" when it appears calm as conditions quickly worsen as the eye passes.
- Find a safe room in your home that can serve as protection during the worst parts of the storm. Seeking an interior room, with the fewest windows or doors, is the safest option. Many times this area is the bathroom, laundry room or hallway on the first floor of your home.
- If you lose power during a storm, you should unplug all appliances and turn off the air conditioner system. After receiving power back, wait at least 30 minutes before turning on air conditioner and major appliances to prevent power surges.
After the Hurricane
- Stay away from downed power lines. Do not attempt to walk or drive through flooded areas. Hidden debris can be very dangerous and depth levels deceiving.
- Do not use generators inside the home or in an enclosed room. Carbon monoxide poisoning is deadly. Do not wire generators to the breaker box.
- Do not attempt to climb on the roof or enter any other hazardous situation.
- Without power, you will find yourself more exposed to insects. Protect yourself and family from bugs by wearing insect repellent.
- Report any damage to management immediately. We will dispatch contractors on a triage system as soon as conditions and roads allow.
- Make sure to listen to officials for instructions. Typically, roads are not passable and curfews are imposed. For your safety, do not leave your home (unless necessary for your safety) until officials say it's okay to do so. For questions, call Emergency Management.
- If damage to our area is severe, we will be inspecting properties as soon as possible after the storm. If your home appears to have damage and you are not home, we will enter the premises to document the damages.
- Written authorization by the homeowner or landlord must be obtained prior to FEMA or any other person or agency installing a tarp on the roof! The tenant is not authorized to do any repairs without written authorization.
Important Contact Information
Gulf Power- 1-800-487-6937. Use this number to report downed power lines or dangerous conditions. If power is restored to your neighborhood and not your home, you can report it here as well. Before you call, check all circuit breakers and the line going to your meter to ensure it is not damaged.
Gulf Power Outage Map http://outagemap.gulfpower.com/external/default.html
Escambia County Emergency Management- (850) 471-6400 ~
Santa Rosa County Emergency Management- (850) 983-5360 ~
Okaloosa County Emergency Management- (850) 651-7560 ~ http://www.co.okaloosa.fl.us/public_safety.html
Useful web links:
To sign up for Escambia County emergency alerts via text message or email http://www.bereadyescambia.com/?q=emergency-notification-system
Realty Masters of FL
(850) 473-3983 phone~ (850) 512-6019 emergency cell
4400 Bayou Blvd. #58B, Pensacola, FL 32503
Follow us on facebook for update: http://www.facebook.com/realtymastersoffl
The Realty Masters Team
Do you have Insurance?
Gather any insurance policies and important documents.
If you do have renters insurance, you should have an inventory of items that you own in the home including a list with serial and model numbers as well as photos to document. Insurance experts recommend routinely taking a detailed inventory of your possessions.
In the event of a storm, your personal property and possessions are not covered by the homeowners insurance. You must have a renters insurance policy for your contents.
Please remember, your insurance policy does not cover flood damages. You must secure a separate flood insurance policy for this to be covered. If you live near any body of water, we do recommend securing flood insurance. The good news is that renters insurance is very affordable in comparison to homeowner's insurance! Renters insurance policies start as low as $15 per month.
Do you know if you are in an evacuation zone?
Do you know if you live in an evacuation zone? Use this link to search for your property or check the maps below. http://floridadisaster.org/PublicMapping/
Santa Rosa County