How to Maintain a Flood Prone Property in Florida

One-quarter of homes in Florida don’t pay enough in flood insurance, according to Axios News. With flood season well underway in the state, this is a worrying statistic for local homes. As a property owner, you therefore, need to ensure that you’re doing all you can to maintain your property at this time, in case your insurers don’t pay up.

Prevent a sewer backup

It was recently revealed that the U.S. The Department of Housing and Urban Development has sold more than 500 HUD properties in Florida in areas prone to flooding. The majority of these homes are foreclosures which have a tendency to have a sewer backup which the homeowners know nothing about. When there’s excess rainwater, drainage pipes overflow and water starts to billow into your house.

To prevent this, never dispose of grease down the sink. A family in Pinellas County were left devastated in March of this year when their insurers refused to pay out for flood damage due to grease blocking their sewer. You should also keep an eye on nearby tree roots and remove as needed, replace your pipes with plastic ones, and avoid disposing of items such as wipes and female hygiene products down the toilet. 

Get your appliances checked

The white goods in your home, such as your fridge and stove, should be regularly inspected to ensure they’re not likely to go up in flames if flood water gets to them during a heavy downpour. If a fire occurs following a flood, your total damages will increase and your insurers may not pay out the full amount.

During a flood, if your household appliances become water damaged, you should unplug them as they could short circuit. Some white goods are repairable when the water has subsided. To be sure, a local independent appliance repairer will be needed. They’ll carefully assess any damage and fix it so that the appliance is safe to use again.

Routinely clean out the gutters

It’s recommended that you inspect and clean your home’s gutters twice per year. Cleaning them so they’re free of dirt, leaves, twigs, and other debris allows water to flow freely through the guttering system. During an inspection, you can identify and fix cracks in your guttering and deal with sagging areas where screws have come loose or fallen out. Failing to routinely do this can cause flooding in your home’s basement or attic.

Check for cracks

Cracks in your property’s walls and floors are common and are typically caused by wear and tear, water damage, subsidence, and climate changes. Over time, these cracks can worsen and allow water to get into your home more easily. As a result, there is a greater risk of flood damage. To ensure this doesn’t happen, regularly inspect the exterior of your property and repair cracks and holes as necessary with filler compound.

Many properties in Florida are at significant risk of flood damage and you may not get the financial help you need to rebuild your home if the worst happens. This is why it’s crucial that you maintain your property to a high standard.


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Written by Bill Heneghan

Bill is an author, investor and serial entrepreneur.

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