Spring is almost here, and with it, warmer days and blooming flowers. However, as April showers move in, so do possible perils to watch out for. Rain brings possible flooding, slick roads, potholes and growing lawns that need maintenance. So, spring into action and consider these home and auto tips for the season’s increased risks.

Prepare for Flooding

More rain means the potential for rivers and streams to overflow or flooding and flash floods on the road to occur. Flooding can impact the structural integrity of your home, from cracking the foundation to weakening walls. It can also do significant damage on the inside by destroying carpet and appliances, inviting mold and contaminating belongings. According to the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), just one inch of water can cause $25,000 worth of damage to your home.

In case of flooding, have an evacuation plan in place for your family, get to higher ground and do not drive in flooded areas. Only a foot of water will cause most vehicles to float. For your home, you can invest in flood protection measures like installing drain plugs in your basement and sewer backwater valves for your pipes. Also, maintain your gutters and any runoff features for your home to help keep water draining.

HomeFirst® Agency includes flood coverage in all their homeowner policies* for manufactured homes because everyone technically lives in a flood zone; the extent of the risk just depends on the region. However, flood coverage is not included by every insurance company or agency, so you’ll want to review your policy for that coverage and decide if you want to add it on.


Drive with Caution

Even if the roads are not flooded, driving on wet roads comes with danger. For rainy weather, make sure your windshield wipers, tires and head and taillights are working and in good condition. You want to keep visibility to a maximum. Drive slow, including after the rain has stopped but the roads are still slick, forget cruise control, use your turn signal early and try not to drive in standing water to avoid hydroplaning. Also, be mindful of animal crossings or fallen trees and limbs that could obstruct the road.

Be Aware of Cracks and Potholes

The change in the weather can cause damage to roads and driveways, especially in the spring. When driving, be on the lookout for potholes. Rain and built-up water can make them difficult to see, and potholes can cause a variety of issues from a flat tire, to steering misalignment, to needing your suspension repaired. Cracked walkways and driveways not only look rough but can be tripping hazards as well.

Practice Lawn Equipment Safety

Finally, spring starts many people’s lawncare routines. However, before you break out the push or riding mower, take some steps to keep you and your equipment safe. Spring clean your yard by checking for and removing any limbs, rocks or other obstructions (including toys!) you want to avoid hitting with your mower’s blades. This reduces risk of injury to you or others present and costly damage to your mower. Look over your equipment before using it to make sure no repairs are needed, and safely discard any old, leftover gasoline. Be sure to only refuel your mower or trimmer outside of the home, not in the garage, as fumes are dangerous and flammable. Avoid mowing on wet grass to prevent slips, and use protective gear and proper safety procedures when using your mower or trimmer.

And now you are ready for the season! HomeFirst® hopes you enjoy your springtime with safety in mind.

*Available in select states.

Coverage is subject to deductibles and exclusions listed in the policy. HomeFirst’s homeowner policies are underwritten by American Banker’s Insurance Company of Florida (in MN- American Security Insurance Company), a business of Assurant Specialty Property, an Assurant, Inc. business.

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