No one knows when a natural disaster strikes and, yet, everyone should be prepared for it.
A natural disaster can be devastating. It can inflict severe damage to property, cause major injuries, and can even lead to the loss of life.
In Australia, the 2019-2020 bushfires, which earned the moniker “Black Summer,” killed 33 people and destroyed over 3,000 homes. The financial impact of the bushfires was estimated to be around $10 billion. Moreover, the weather conditions that enabled the bushfires to spread and continue burning for months are expected to become more frequent in the coming years.
There is no way to stop natural disasters from happening, but the damages that come out of them can be minimised.
Consider Where You are Building
Property investors should always consider the location of a piece of land that they are trying to acquire and planning to develop. However, aside from assessing whether it will yield a higher value in the future or if it will be filled by tenants when a rental is up, start to imagine what kind of natural disaster will possibly strike in the area one day. Look for land for sale in a place that will not be experiencing flooding, will not be in the way of a bushfire, and will not be swallowed by the sea when the tide rises.
Knowing that the property would not be damaged by natural disasters will future-proof your investment.
Partner with Respected Contractors
Cutting corners and building a structure that compromise quality to lower cost would only be disastrous in the future. In truth, those who scrimp on building materials will end up spending more money on maintenance and repairs.
They also likely would know what to do in order to prevent severe damage from natural disasters, including which building materials would survive a strong hurricane or how to make the structure resilient to earthquakes.
Doing prep work will prove useful in the long run. Instead of scrambling around to look for contractors available to fix your property after a natural disaster, you would have a structure that still stands despite the strong force that just tried to tear it down.
Just in case, create a list of your most trusted contractors so that, in case your need to make replacements on your property, you have someone to call.
That said, there should be safety features in the property so that, in case of emergency, the tenants will be able to leave. There should be emergency exits that are easily accessible, fire extinguishers and smoke detectors, and other forms of protection. In addition, shutting off critical utilities should be easy.
Take Out an Insurance
A proper insurance will save you from having to cough up a large amount of money when a natural disaster strikes and damages your property. There are different types of insurance that cover various weather and environmental events, including lightning, hails, earthquakes, hurricanes, flooding, and even volcanic eruptions.
Encourage your tenants to get insurance, too. After a natural disaster, an apartment that is still standing needs to be assessed by a professional before anyone should be allowed to sleep in there. Not all damages show up immediately after the event. Sometimes, small cracks that seem innocent may grow bigger and pose a danger to the lives of everyone inside the structure. The tenant should have insurance and funds to collect in case they need to move somewhere else.
Natural disasters are inevitable and, because of climate change, they will only get more frequent and severe in the coming years. Property investors should be prepared for the challenges that the warming planet is about to throw the human race. By bracing for the worst, they will be able to protect their investments from damages caused by natural disasters.