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Guide to Tornado Preparedness

by Ankeny Real Estate Service

Weather in Iowa can only be described as predictably unpredictable.  This month, for example, we’ve had it all -- sunshine and temps in the 80s, to wind, rain, frigid temps and even a few flakes of snow.  But we’re not complaining!  Nope.  Us Iowans, we’re conditioned to roll with the punches when it comes to climate.  And if there is one thing we’ve learned with regards to the weather after living in Iowa for all these years, it is to always.be.prepared.  (Those good ol’ Boy Scouts sure know what they’re talking about!)


This preparation piece is especially crucial during the spring season, also known as, tornado season.  You see?  The problem with tornados, like many natural disasters, is that you never know exactly when or where they will strike or how severe they might be.  Therefore, your best bet is to be prepared with a plan of action.  Here are five simple steps you can take to ensure that you, your loved ones, and your home are as safe as possible should a twister touch down.

 

● Identify the safest place for shelter.  In your home, this is likely the basement or storm cellar.  If underground safety is unavailable, head to the centermost part of your home, like a small interior room or hallway, on the lowest level.  Your safe place should be away from windows, doors, and exterior walls. The more walls between you and the outside, the better!

● Become familiar with your community’s weather alert system and make sure all adult and teenagers in your home is aware of what to do when a tornado watch or warning is issued. (Interested in the difference between a watch and a warning?  Click here to learn more.)

● Develop a family plan.  Identify escape routes out of your home and neighborhood, on the off chance they are necessary, then assign an emergency meeting point. 

● Buy or put together an emergency survival kit that consists of: several days’ worth of drinking water and preservable foods, first-aid supplies, a flashlight, basic tools, a portable weather radio, batteries, clothing, blankets, cash and credit cards, necessary medications, work gloves, and important documents (including insurance policies). 

● Finally, conduct periodic tornado drills so all family members are aware of what to do in the event of a twister.

 

Again, the only predictable thing about tornadoes is that they are, for the most part, unpredictable.  So, taking the time to prepare yourself, your family, and your home can prove highly worthwhile when the weather takes a turn for the worse, and twisters touch down.  

Wondering Whether {Weather} Or Not Now Is The Time To Buy?

by Ankeny Real Estate Service

Let’s talk about the weather, shall we? Yes, the weather.  We’re Iowans, we LOVE to talk weather – good weather, bad weather, impending weather, and patterns of weather.  Whether (hardy har har!) you realize it or not, WEATHER plays a significant role in the real estate market.

 

 

Sales trends can vary largely based on seasonal temperatures and precipitation, as can the perspective with which prospective buyers are looking.  Studies have shown that, generally, the spring and summer months are optimum times to market a home and winter is the worst (duh!).  It’s a no brainer to say that homes just show better on bright, sunny days.  Even some not-so-pretty properties tend to look nicer when the sun is shining and birds are chirping.  Like wise, cold temps, wind, rain, and snow can be major deterrents for buyers.

 

As a potential buyer it is important to remember a couple things with regards to weather and your home shopping search.  First of all, dreary winter days and moist spring months might just be the *perfect* time to capitalize on fast closing times or other negotiation strategies offered by motivated sellers. Secondly, professional inspections are, in our opinion, always worth the investment.  A high quality inspector will pay special attention to “off-season” items or potential problems.  For example, in the middle of winter, it is easy to pinpoint heating related issues, but a competent inspection will ensure the HVAC is functioning properly, as well.  Fireplaces, pools, irrigation systems, and windows are all other “seasonal” items that can often be overlooked.  Finally, if you’re in the market for a home, remember that not all homes are listed in just the nice weather months.  There are many (many!) circumstances that dictate when a seller needs to sell and regardless of season, there are always great opportunities out there and beautiful homes to be bought!

 

Looking to get a head start on the spring temps?  Want to take advantage of interest rates that are still below average? NEED to find a home now, even in these less than ideal weather conditions?  We’d be happy to help! Let’s work together despite this dreary weather!  Call us today! 515.964.3662

Displaying blog entries 1-2 of 2