Multifamily Florida - Spring 2013 - (Page 21)

FEATURE Plan Ahead … Weather, or Not by Scott McCurdy Natural disasters and household emergencies happen every day and cause billions of dollars in property damage annually. When destructive elements like rain, wind, lightning and hail strike, the result can be roof and structural damage, water intrusion, mold, electrical failures, plumbing problems … the list goes on. When a natural disaster occurs, repairing even one home is demanding, but coordinating restoration for an entire community is a much more daunting task. And more often than not, multi-family developments face two separate losses when severe weather strikes – both to individual homes and exterior damage to common areas. Thus, it is critical to plan ahead before reconstruction is needed. ORGANIZE AND COMMUNICATE Most people are anything but calm when faced with severe weather, and once a threat is identified, those in harm’s way work themselves into a panic – buying supplies and securing buildings. But, they often overlook one major precaution: forming a plan for remediation in the event damage occurs. While not all natural disasters come with advanced warning, creating a preparedness plan now will help to facilitate repairs – and get the community back to normal as efficiently as possible. Create an emergency plan to suit each type of disaster: • Hurricanes: Though they can be deadly, hurricanes are one of the few weather threats that provide advance notice. Make sure your residents are well-informed – send out a list of supplies or organize community informational meetings. Also, find out if there are any elderly or disabled residents who need extra help to prepare. • Tornados, Thunderstorms and Flooding: Wind and water damage from these storms can result in a litany of problems: fallen trees, broken windows, roof damage and mold. Since there is little time to plan ahead, make sure you have established an emergency communication plan for residents to follow. • Fire: A fire in one condominium unit can displace residents in an entire building. Unfortunately, the only remedy is to begin remediation immediately. Enlist a reputable general contractor to have on-call for emergencies. CREATE THE PLAN When dealing with hundreds of homes, repairs must be completed promptly to both decrease resident displacement and to remediate general hazards associated with damage from water and wind. For that reason, disaster preparedness must begin well before the threat is imminent. While you can’t necessarily control the actions of each individual, you can provide easy-to-follow instructions for the quickest possible recovery. Ask the following questions to begin your community’s plan: MultifamilyFLORIDA l SPRING 2013 l 21

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Multifamily Florida - Spring 2013

Legislative Update: And So It Begins
Renovations and Maintenance: Managing the Many Moving Parts
Hey Mold ... Dry Up!
Five Crucial Conversations for Flawless Execution
Open for Business!
President's Message
Plan Ahead ... Weather, or Not
APAC Update
To Tow ... or Not to Tow?
Apartment Trends
Index to Advertisers/

Multifamily Florida - Spring 2013