When you consider that Fall River receives 44.6 inches of precipitation per year on average, it is helpful for homeowners to learn how to prevent home flooding and water damage. Even if you aren’t in what is known as a “flood zone” with your Massachusetts homeowners insurance policy, seasonal storms and rapid melting of snow and ice can create flooding and water damage issues just about anywhere. Your Fall River insurance agent can work with you to ensure that your home is protected by offering policy coverage and additional riders based on your needs. However, there is more to protecting your investment than just updating your home insurance in Fall River. There are things that you can do to your property that will help to protect it from home flooding and water damage.
Keep Drains, Ditches, and Gutters Clean and Clear
One of the first things that Fall River homeowners can do to prevent flooding and water damage is to ensure that all drains, ditches, and gutters are cleaned regularly. Avoid having piles of leaves, mulch, or other debris on your property where it could be pushed by excess water flow and block sewage drains. Properties with lots of trees require regular raking and removal of debris, including leaves, acorns, pinecones, and pine needles, as well as sticks, twigs, and other items. Make sure you know where local storm drains are located so you can keep them clear and remove any visible blockage. You can also contact your local water and sewage departments if you notice severe blockages so they can clear the drains before a big storm hits the area.
Gutters, downspouts, and other drainage features around your home should be cleaned and checked regularly. Consider adding a “gutter guard” product that can be used to prevent leaves and debris from getting inside your gutters and blocking your downspouts. If your gutters are clogged, they won’t be able to properly move the water away from your foundation and other areas around your home. If you have clogged gutters, consider hiring a professional to clean and inspect them OR make time to get up there and clean them out yourself. Do not delay on this project. Cleaning of all drains, ditches, gutters, and downspouts should happen at least twice during the year, in the spring and again in the fall. Periodic checks should be made at least monthly or more frequently if you have a lot of trees.
Improve Grading and Drainage on Your Property
Depending on when your home was built and the integrity of the builder, you may have underlying issues that make it more probable that you will experience flooding and water damage. Take note of any rain or water that accumulates near your home, particularly around the foundation. Fall River homeowners should ensure that the ground slopes away from the foundation instead of bringing the water toward it. Dirt and sod can be used to improve the grading. However, if the grading is significant, you may need to hire a professional service to take care of this for you before the big storms hit. A professional landscaper or drainage expert will make sure that any grading work does not block drainage features and that everything works together as it should.
You should also take this time to check around the foundation for any cracks and seal any openings, such as utility access points, windows, doors, and exhaust pipes. Again, this should be done by a professional, but can also be achieved by sealing it with masonry or mortar caulking, explicitly designed for this type of work. Check and seal all basement windows and consider having new energy-efficient windows installed if your home is 20 years old or more. The newer windows that are available today have a much better seal that is designed to prevent water from entering the house and can reduce temperature fluctuations during the winter months. Check with your Fall River insurance agent to determine if any of the upgrades you are making to your home qualify for discounts on your Massachusetts homeowners insurance.
Contact Paul Sullivan Insurance Agency
Our goal is to provide our customers with the best coverage and rates for home insurance in Fall River and the surrounding Southeastern Massachusetts area. If you have any questions about your existing policy or would like to speak with a Fall River insurance agent about getting a FREE quote for new coverage, give us a call at 508-678-9611. We can answer any questions you might have and provide you detailed information about all of our policy options designed specifically for Fall River homeowners.