10 Ways to Prepare Your Home for an Emergency

It’s a scary thought, but it can happen: natural disasters like floods, fires, tornadoes and hurricanes can wreak havoc on your home. They can leave you without power or running water for days. To manage the aftermath of any type of emergency situation, whether it’s small-scale or city-wide in scale, you need to have an action plan in place. It doesn’t matter if you live in the city center or out in the suburbs— no one is immune from the threat of natural disasters . Keeping your home safe from a potential crisis requires preparation and planning ahead. The following tips are great ways to prepare your home for an emergency and establish home preparedness.

Create an emergency kit for your home

In an earthquake, a flood, or any other type of disaster, your first priority will be to make sure the people in your household are safe. Be sure to have a first aid kit in case anyone gets injured, and make sure everyone knows where it is. You should also make sure you have a supply of food and water, particularly if you can’t leave your house. A few suggestions are some canned food, water bottles, fruit and nuts, as well as any necessary dietary supplements. You should also have a radio that runs on batteries. Additionally, you need away to charge your cellphone in case you need to get in touch with emergency services. Keeping these items in one place will make it easier to grab and go during an emergency.

Install a fire alarm and smoke detector

This may seem like an obvious one, but it’s important. Fire detectors are a great early warning system for fires, but some models also detect carbon monoxide and other dangerous gases that might be present in your home. Smoke detectors are designed to detect smoke from small fires, like an overheated stove or electrical short, or from a fire outside your home, like a burning building or tree.

If you:

  • hear a smoke detector, get out of the house as quickly as possible and call 911.
  • have a fire alarm, make sure you know how to use and reset it.
  • live in an area that’s at risk of earthquakes, it’s important to install earthquake-resistant systems and smoke detectors.

Install flood lights and battery-powered lanterns

If you:

  • live in an area that’s susceptible to flooding, you may want to install flood lights on your property to help illuminate areas that might otherwise be underwater.
  • have outdoor stairs or walkways, you might want to install lights there as well to help illuminate any pathways at night.
  • live in an area that gets frequent flooding, you may want to install flood lights inside your home as well. Flood lights are designed to withstand water and humidity, so they can be a great choice for indoor flood lights. Flood lights don’t put off as much light as traditional indoor lights, but they are designed to shine in all directions, so they illuminate a larger area. You can also install battery-powered lanterns for indoor light if the power goes out. Make sure you have a supply of batteries on hand so the lanterns don’t sit dark if the power doesn’t come back on as soon as you hope.

Install a fast-acting door lock

If you live in an area that’s prone to flooding or hurricanes, you might want to install a fast-acting door lock like a bar lock. This type of lock is activated by pushing a button. It works by sliding a bar into place in front of the door, preventing it from opening. If water starts to rise, you can lock your door and stay safe inside. A bar lock is easy to install and will only cost a couple hundred dollars. It’s a good idea to install one on every door leading outside, including back doors and garage doors. You may want to install a few on your upper-level doors too, depending on your risk level. If you have a high-risk area for hurricanes, it’s a good idea to install a bar lock on your upper-level doors. This will help keep out rising water and debris.

Protect your windows with steel mesh

Windows are an obvious target for looters and thieves during a disaster. If you live in an area prone to flooding or storms, you should install steel mesh on your windows. Steel mesh can help prevent damage from flying debris, including broken glass. If you live in an area that’s prone to wildfires, you may want to install steel mesh on your windows as well. This will help keep out embers and protect your home from damage. You can install metal mesh on your windows in several ways. You can install a metal frame and slide the mesh inside. Additionally, you can attach the mesh directly to your windows.

Seal your home’s foundation

If you live in an area that’s prone to flooding, you may want to consider sealing the foundation of your home. This can help keep water out of your basement and protect your home’s foundation from erosion. You can hire a professional to seal your home’s foundation, or you can try it yourself, as long as you know what you’re doing. Make sure you have a good tool to dig with and protective gear, such as gloves and goggles. If you’re doing the job yourself, make sure you know exactly where to dig. If you’re in an area prone to flooding, you may also want to consider a few other steps to protect your home. You may want to install water-proofing materials on your walls, particularly in your basement, and make sure your electrical system is up to code and waterproofed appropriately.


Natural disasters can happen at any time, and they’re unpredictable. However, there are things you can do to protect your home from damage. Prepare your home with the tips above and you’ll be better equipped to handle emergency situations. It’s important to keep your emergency kit stocked, update your emergency plans, and be aware of your surroundings so you can avoid dangerous situations. With a little preparation, you can become better equipped to handle any crisis.

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