Is your building storm ready?
Storm season in Australia is from September to March each year - but severe weather and storms can strike at anytime. Whether it’s heavy rain, lightning or hailstones heading your way, here’s our top tips to prepare your strata-titled building for a storm. It’ll help to protect your property, and maybe your insurance premium!
Prune your trees and cut-back branches
As well as keeping your garden or outdoor space looking great for your residents, it will also help to protect your property from damage caused by falling trees or branches. Make sure any weak or overhanging branches are trimmed back, as well as any large plants close to the building.
If you are concerned about a tree on your property, you can enlist and Arborist to assess it for safety. They’ll be able to advise you on the best action to take to protect your property from tree damage.
Clean out the gutters
We know it’s not anyone’s favourite job - but it’s got to be done. Making sure your gutters and downpipes are clear of leaves and debris will mean when the rain starts pouring, it can flow freely into the drain and not leak into your roof or damage the external walls.
Remember to also check the drains on any balconies. Make sure these are kept clear and nothing is covering them so water can run off. In very heavy or persistent rain it could flood the balcony and seep back into the building!
Check the roof
While you’re already up there cleaning the gutters, you should also check your roof for any damage or signs of deterioration. Everyone’s roofs are different but here’s some key areas to check and things to look out for:
- Look for any broken, cracked or missing roof tiles
- Signs of moss or mold forming
- Chimneys or vent coverings are in good condition
- Solar panels are attached securely - and don’t forget to check your surge protector, incase of lightning strikes
Driveways and car parks
Keep an eye out for any cracks or holes that might be forming in the asphalt. Although they aren’t causing any issues now, after some heavy rain or flooding they could quickly get much worse and become a pothole. Once these are formed they’ll damage tyres and can be a trip hazard.
If you residents are lucky enough to have a swimming pool in the complex, that will need a little bit of preparation too. Although you can’t do much for the pool itself during a storm, you can make sure all the pool equipment, especially any cleaning chemicals, are stored safely and securely.
It’s also a good idea to find a place to store any poolside furniture, so it can be secured when you know there’s a storm heading your way. In high winds loose garden furniture and equipment could cause a lot of damage if it gets picked up by strong gusts.
Check your level of cover
It’s also important to check what’s covered under your buildings residential strata insurance policy and understand any exclusions. Make an inventory of items covered by your policy, and check your sum-insured value so know what’s protected when a storm strikes. If you’ve recently bought new contents or upgraded your facilities let your insurer know so they can be added or updated in your policy.