Storms can be destructive to our homes, especially if a tornado is involved. Once the severe weather has passed and you are safe, it’s time to inspect your home for damage. Most severe weather damage requires a home professional to evaluate and repair. In the meantime, use this 10 STEP CHECKLIST to make an initial damage assessment of your home.

  1. Chipped or split driveways and walkways
  2. Broken or dangling tree branches
  3. Split or broken brick
  4. Foundation cracks or chips
  5. Fallen shingles
  6. Drooping gutters
  7. Dented or torn A/C units
  8. Cracked or broken windows
  9. Leaning or bulging walls
  10. Roof holes or damage

Don’t forget to inspect exterior structures such as pergolas, decks, fences and sheds. If you can do so safely, take pictures of the damage to submit to your insurance company. You can also render temporary repairs while you wait for home experts to assess and repair your home. Boarding up broken windows, and covering damaged roof areas with tarp are acceptable ways to prevent further issues to your home.

If there are downed power lines on your property, don’t go near them, call your electrical company immediately. Also, if you smell natural gas or see smoke, call the appropriate authorities.

Your family’s safety is the most important thing during or after a severe storm. Things can be replaced, people can’t, so don’t stress too much over home damage – it can be fixed. Fortunately, you have home insurance for a reason and home experts to guide you.