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3 Tips to Protect Your Home From Natural Disasters

3 Tips to Protect Your Home From Natural Disasters

Floods, wildfires, earthquakes, tornadoes, hail and tropical storms are all classified as natural disasters.[1] Depending on the season, a natural disaster could strike at anytime, and your home could suffer serious damage because of it. This is why it is so important that you reinforce your home to prevent unnecessary damage and keep repair costs to a minimum.

1. Make Sure You Have Homeowner’s Insurance

Note that homeowner’s insurance is different from mortgage insurance. It’s not always easy to come up with the money for repairs with only a moment’s notice, and they could be costly. Homeowner’s insurance doesn’t always offer full coverage for damage to a home due to a natural disaster. Your homeowner’s insurance may include partial insurance for your home for specific natural disasters. While being prepared and having money put away for emergency repairs are responsible things to do, the best alternative may be to get separate insurance in your state for the natural disasters most likely to hit if your homeowner’s insurance doesn’t cover it.

Hurricanes and Tropical Storms

These are likely to hit on the east coast. Be prepared by having hurricane shutters installed, an extra strong garage door and reinforcing the frame of your home with hurricane straps. A contractor will know what hurricane straps are and how to install them.

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Hail

Hail could damage the roof, glass windows and doors and siding of your home. In addition to installing hurricane shutters on your windows and possibly your doors, you should make sure you have roof hail damage insurance.

Tornadoes

Protect your home from a tornado by bracing the gables of the roof and reinforcing the sheathing underneath the shingles or outer roofing.

2. Have a Safe Room

Build a standard safe room for tornadoes. This room may offer some protection when other disasters strike too, like hurricanes. A basic room of this type that accommodates 16 people costs around $3,000 to build. Your safe room could double as a utility closet or storage room at other times.

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Wildfires

Wildfires can be caused by lightening, human negligence or lava from volcanoes. Minimize the possibility of your home being damaged by a wildfire by creating a distance of 30 feet between your home and all dead foliage that could catch fire as well as any trees. This may be drastic, but it’s also recommended to install mesh screening under porches and decks, over vents, openings in your roof and over the entire outside of your home. This makes it almost impossible for flaming debris and flying sparks to light your home on fire.

Earthquakes

Secure heavy objects, like cabinets, shelves, TVs and bookcases to walls or the floor using brackets, safety straps and cables.

Floods

Elevate appliances in your home, especially the furnace, water heater and electric panels. It’s probably not a good idea to have them in your basement, since that’s where flood water will usually collect first.

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Use a waterproofing compound on your basement’s walls so water can’t get in. Also, put two-port check-valves in your drains so that floodwater can’t back up.

3. Find Out What Was Damaged and Have Repairs Done Quickly

Immediately after a disaster, note the date, and check your roof and home for damage both inside and out. On your roof, look for torn, broken or missing shingles. Take pictures, have the appropriate repair workers come and give you estimates of repair costs, and then contact your insurance company or have repairs done. Whether you’re dealing with your homeowner’s insurance or specific natural disaster insurance, if your insurance company is giving you trouble about covering costs, which are stipulated in the contract, then call a public adjuster to get help with your insurance provider.

To prevent the possibility of a natural disaster costing you extra money, do what you can to keep damage to a minimum. For example, use mulch or something similar instead of loose stones for paths and driveways, remove any weak branches from nearby trees, and make sure there is the least possibility of water getting into your home through spaces or gaps in windows and doors.

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Featured photo credit: WikiMedia via upload.wikimedia.org

Reference

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Last Updated on December 2, 2019

10 Powerful Ways to Stop Worrying and Start Living Today

10 Powerful Ways to Stop Worrying and Start Living Today

Plato knew that the body and mind are intimately linked. And in the late 1800s, the Mayo brothers, famous physicians, estimated that over half of all hospital beds are filled with people suffering from frustration, anxiety, worry and despair. Causes of worry are everywhere, in our relationships and our jobs, so it’s key we find ways to take charge of the stress.

In his classic book How to Stop Worrying and Start Living, Dale Carnegie offers tools to ditch excessive worrying that help you make a worry-free environment for your private and professional life.

These are the top 10 tips to grab worry by the horns and wrestle it to the ground:

1. Make Your Decision and Never Look Back

Have you ever made a decision in life only to second-guess it afterwards? Of course you have! It’s hard not to wonder whether you’ve done the right thing and whether there might still be time to take another path.

But keep this in mind: you’ve already made your decision, so act decisively on it and dismiss all your anxiety about it.

Don’t stop to hesitate, to reconsider, or to retrace your steps. Once you’ve chosen a course of action, stick to it and never waver.

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2. Live for Today, Package Things up in “Day-Tight Compartments”

You know that feeling: tossing, turning and worrying over something that happened or something that might, well into the wee hours. To avoid this pointless worrying, you need “day-tight compartments”. Much as a ship has different watertight compartments, your own “day-tight” ones are a way to limit your attention to the present day.

The rule is simple: whatever happened in the past or might happen in the future must not intrude upon today. Everything else has to wait its turn for tomorrow’s box or stay stuck in the past.

3. Embrace the Worst-Case Scenario and Strategize to Offset It

If you’re worried about something, ask yourself: “What’s the worst thing that could happen?” Could you lose your job? Be jailed? Get killed?

Whatever the “worst” might be, it’s probably not so world-ending. You could probably even bounce back from it!

If, for example, you lose your job, you could always find another. Once you accept the worst-case scenario and get thinking about contingency plans, you’ll feel calmer.

4. Put a Lid on Your Worrying

Sometimes we stress endlessly about negative experiences when just walking away from them would serve us far better.

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To make squashing that worry easier, try this strategy, straight from stock traders: it’s called the “stop-loss” order, where shares are bought at a certain price, and then their price development is observed. If things go badly and the share price hits a certain point, they are sold off immediately. This stops the loss from increasing further.

In the same manner, you can put a stop-loss order on things that cause you stress and grief.

5. Fake It ‘Til You Make It – Happiness, That Is

We can’t directly influence how we feel, but we can nudge ourselves to change through how we think and act.

If you’re feeling sad or low, slap a big grin on your face and whistle a chipper tune. You’ll find it impossible to be blue when acting cheerful. But you don’t necessarily need to act outwardly happy; you can simply think happier thoughts instead.

Marcus Aurelius summed it up aptly:

“Our life is what our thoughts make it.”

6. Give for the Joy of Giving

When we perform acts of kindness, we often do so with the expectation of gratitude. But harboring such expectations will probably leave you disappointed.

One person well aware of this fact was the lawyer Samuel Leibowitz. Over the course of his career, Leibowitz saved 78 people from going to the electric chair. Guess how many thanked him? None.

So stop expecting gratitude when you’re kind to someone. Instead, take joy from the act yourself.

7. Dump Envy – Enjoy Being Uniquely You

Your genes are completely unique. Even if someone had the same parents as you, the likelihood of someone identical to you being born is just one in 300,000 billion.

Despite this amazing fact, many of us long to be someone else, thinking the grass is greener on the other side of the fence. But living your life this way is pointless. Embrace your uniqueness and get comfortable with who you really are: How to Be True to Yourself and Live the Life You Want

8. Haters Will Hate — It Just Means You’re Doing It Right

When you’re criticized, it often means you’re accomplishing something noteworthy. In fact, let’s take it a step further and consider this: the more you’re criticized, the more influential and important a person you likely are.

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So the next time somebody talks you down, don’t let it get to you. Take it as a compliment!

9. Chill Out! Learn to Rest Before You Get Tired

Scientists agree that emotions are the most common cause of fatigue. And it works the other way around, too: fatigue produces more worries and negative emotions.

It should be clear, therefore, that you’ve got to relax regularly before you feel tired. Otherwise, worries and fatigue will accumulate on top of each other.

It’s impossible to worry when you are relaxed, and regular rest helps you maintain your ability to work effectively.

10. Get Organized and Enjoy Your Work

There are few greater sources of misery in life than having to work, day in, day out, in a job you despise. It would make sense then that you shouldn’t pick a job you hate, or even just dislike doing.

But say you already have a job. How can you make it more enjoyable and worry-free? One way is to stay organized: a desk full of unanswered mails and memos is sure to breed worries.

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Better yet, rethink about the job you’re doing: What to Do When You Hate Your Job but Want a Successful Career

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Featured photo credit: Tyler Nix via unsplash.com

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