If you own a home, you likely realize the value of curb appeal. In keeping with this principle, you might add elaborate landscaping to the outside of your home. This landscaping might make the home look pretty, and tie your property in with its natural surroundings. But be careful! This landscaping can pose an expensive risk, particularly when it comes to flooding.
How to Tell if Your Landscaping is a Flooding Risk
Take a long walk around the exterior of your home. Step as far back on your property as possible. Notice the grading of the land. Does it slope away from your home?
Now, walk along the edge of the home and look at any flowerbeds you set up. Do they mound against the wall of the home?
If the answer to these questions is "no," you may face a higher risk of flooding.
Avoid Home Insurance Claims with Better Landscaping
Home insurance usually does not cover flooding that occurs due to poor grading. It also does not protect the home's foundation. This is important, because inadequate drainage from poor grading can cause both flooding and foundation damage. And you could end up paying for repairs yourself.
Fortunately, with some vigilance and planning, you can avoid these costly problems. Here's how.
Shore Up the Foundation
Look at the lower walls of your home's exterior. Ensure there are no cracks, and look for signs of crumbling or water damage. If foundation problems exist, fix them immediately, with the help of a licensed contractor. Once done, you should not have to revisit the situation again for quite some time.
Work with a Landscaper on Yard Grading
Before tackling the flowerbeds and other landscaping, have the yard graded. The process involves pulling dirt away from the home and allowing it to slope downward. You want water to run away from the home.
Even a very slight grade can make a big difference. This way, when rain hits the home, it will get funneled through the gutters and then away from the home.
Slope Landscaped Areas
Specifically, focus on areas around the outside of the home. Here are some tips:
- Mound soil and compact it against the home. Then, slope it downward from that point into the yard.
- Add gravel or loose soil. Water can run through these easily.
- Keep roots away from the foundation walls. This way, they don't damage the foundation by getting intertwined with it.
- Keep leaves and debris away from the foundation. This way, you can clearly spot any foundation issues before they become severe.
- Ensure water flows away from the home. Any landscaping changes you make should adhere to this principle.
Taking these steps can help prevent home insurance claims. Work with a landscaping contractor who understands the importance of proper grading. And, monitor your landscaping over time for issues.
Have questions about home insurance? Affordable Insurance Group is here to help. Contact us to learn more.