Outbreaks of extreme weather in the UK are becoming more common. Scientists have called some of this weather the ‘human fingerprint’ of climate change but whatever the cause, homeowners need to do all they can to minimise any potential damage.
With heavy rain causing flooding everywhere and extreme weather harming properties around the country, there has never been a better time to weatherproof your house. Here is our guide to doing just that.
Make sure your home is watertight
According to the Independent, the extreme flooding of the past few years is set to become “the new normal”. After the major floods of 2015, MPs found that one in six UK homes are at risk. If this is the case, preparing your house for a flood is more important than ever.
There are many measures you can take to protect your house from water damage. Some of them are so simple you could do them in one weekend. One of the simpler measures is the fairly simple act of checking and repairing your guttering. If your gutters are broken, or blocked with leaves, rain water will pool on your roof, which could lead to damp patches inside. This damp could eventually break through the roof, drenching your house’s interior.
In terms of the more long-term solutions, reinforcing the exterior of your house with building paper, housewrap or rigid foam sheathing will give you better drainage and extra protection from heavy rain. If you are willing to undertake an even bigger project, adding floodwalls or elevating your home will significantly alleviate any flood damage.
Enlist keyholders for emergency alarm response
Protecting your house physically is important, but relief from weather-based disasters can often require a human touch. If your house is damaged while you are not home, it is important to have someone available to check for any issues as soon as possible to make sure they do not get worse.
One way to do this is to enlist the services of a professional keyholding company. Keyholders can send out agents to respond to any alarm activations, which they monitor from a central base. One such firm, based in London, describe an alarm activation that turned out to be a caused by water damage. The company’s key guard sent out took pictures of the damage for the homeowner to send to insurers, called contractors to help fix the damage, and did all he could to clear up the mess and reduce the damage on the spot.
No matter what the weather-based disaster, having someone on hand to patch up your home when you can’t be there is a huge advantage.
Prepare your home for extreme temperatures
Alongside the increased rain, heatwaves and stretches of extreme cold weather have both become more frequent in recent years.
There are simple measures you can take to prepare for extreme cold weather and the heavy snowfall that may come with it. Most importantly, you need to identify the appropriate materials to insulate certain parts of your property: caulk for any cracks, foam seals on electrical outlets, and plastic window insulation kits to stop the cold creeping through. It is also essential to turn your heating on at regular intervals in order to prevent frozen pipes.
During a heatwave, one of the best measures may in fact be to redecorate—specifically, paint your home white. This was the official recommendation of the NHS and Public Health England, who also advised putting up external shades. Other experts recommend keeping one small room cool with an air conditioning unit, suggesting that those in your house remain in that room when the temperature is at its highest.
If you follow these tips, your home should be prepared for anything, whatever the weather.