Protect Your Property


1.  Safeguard your possessions.

Create a personal flood file containing information about all your possessions and keep it in a secure place, such as a safe deposit box or waterproof container. This file should have:

  • A copy of your insurance policies with your agents contact information.

  • A household inventory: For insurance purposes, be sure to keep a written and visual record of all major household items and valuables, even those stored in basements, attics or garages. You can either photograph or videotape your belongings.   Create files that include serial numbers and store receipts for major appliances and electronics. Have jewelry and artwork appraised. These documents are critically important when filing insurance claims. For more information visit

  • Copies of all other critical documents, including finance records or receipts of major purchases.

2. Prepare your house

  • First make sure your sump pump is working and then install a battery-operated backup, in case of a power failure. Installing a water alarm will also let you know if water is accumulating in your basement.
  • Clear debris from gutters and downspouts.  This is especially important in the Spring as many gutters have become clogged with leaves, sticks and other debris.
  • Raise your electrical components (switches, sockets, circuit breakers, and wiring) should all be at least 12 inches above your home's projected flood elevation. If you don’t know what that elevation should be, a flood elevation certificate will tell you.  Refer to presentation number 2 in this series for information about how to obtain a certificate.
  •  Place the furnace, water heater, washer, and dryer on cement blocks at least 12 inches above the projected flood elevation.
  • Move furniture, valuables, and important documents to a safe place.