Southern California’s Fire Season is a threat that anyone involved in real estate is aware of. Fire safety is incredibly important for homeowners and sellers, and understanding how to protect your home. We’ve written about fire safety in the past well, focusing on home hardening as protection during fire season.
We’d like to take a similar approach this year, focusing on measures you can take to protect your home during Spring and Summer. Rising temperatures and dry heat, combined with Santa Ana wind, make a dangerous combination during this period of the year, so being proactive and taking fire safety measures for your home is absolutely vital.
Please harden your home.
Retrofitting for fire safety and taking care of inspections ahead of time can greatly increase the chances of your home surviving a fire. We’ve written about this in a previous post, and as a reminder, you should:
Keep your gutters and roofs clear of leaves and debris as dry vegetation poses a severe risk in fire conditions. Using wire mesh and other measures can be taken to keep dry debris from gathering up in rain gutters.
Create and maintain a 5-foot non-combustible zone around your home and your deck.
Keep grass mowed at a 4-inch height and cut any tree branches within 10 feet of your home.
Use ember-resistant construction materials as much as possible. A thorough home inspection can help you identify areas that can be retrofitted with this material as needed.
By hardening your home and keeping the 5 feet area closest to your home free of debris and dry vegetation, you can increase your chances of surviving a fire. Make it a routine during hotter months to inspect and clean as needed so that you are not caught unprepared during peak wildfire season.
Work with the community
Fire safety is not just about protecting your own home but also coming together as a community to protect the neighborhood. Depending on how close property lines are, and your neighbor’s homes are, reducing vulnerability as much as possible is key.
Creating a community effort to ensure that individual homes and the neighborhood itself are taking measures to reduce the chances of fire damage can be incredibly beneficial. Encourage regular inspections and posting reminders about fire season can help. Your local fire department can also help in arranging outreach and awareness in neighborhoods ahead of time to help spread the word and stay safe.
As the weather changes and temperatures rise, staying vigilant is crucial. There are a wide variety of resources available to help you in protecting your home against the threat of fire. Regular inspections, especially around vulnerable areas such as gutters and the roof, can always help.
Please note that The Los Angeles County Fire Department also provides information on their website around fire safety during this season. You can learn more about the Ready! Set! Go! Program here and download their brochure for additional fire safety information. Being safe and proactive is absolutely crucial during this time. Please feel free to contact us if you would like to learn more about fire safety for your home and we can help you point you to the right resources.