Hurricane Irma came and passed, and we survived. Thank God it wasn’t as bad as it was predicted. It’s been irritating and people are suffering, but we’re thankful for all we have and preservation of life. So, let’s look at what we learned and talk about Southwest Florida real estate after hurricane Irma.
Many people didn’t realize flood insurance is affordable. I spoke with some who thought it would be several thousand dollars per year and because their mortgage company didn’t require it, they were safe. We learned that people in Houston thought the same thing. Flooding in parts of Lehigh are horrific. This flooding was not due to storm surge but rather rainfall. Other areas like Island Park, Old Burnt store Rd, and several other communities experienced flooding like never before. If flood insurance is affordable, go get it whether the mortgage company requires it or not.
Much of the damage came from trees. Large beautiful trees are a hazard in storms. I don’t know what the solution is. Perhaps cutting and trimming trees would help keep some of the weight down far from the trunk and save some of these trees from hitting homes and blocking streets? Trees caused down power lines and were probably the number one reason power was out for so long for so many.
Make sure your subdivision clears its drains regularly. This helps alleviate street flooding on private roads and can make the difference whether your street is passable after storm or not. People in Cypress Cay in Gateway among others were stranded for days. I’m sure there were other reasons, but anything that helps drainage is good.
Gas lines were long. Whether you’re running generators or just trying to get to work having some extra gas around ahead of storm is a good thing.
Living close to restaurants and super markets is a good thing after a storm. While many were slow to open, it was a huge relief when they did. If you can walk to either, gas isn’t an issue. If you can’t, at least you won’t burn much gas. Cash is king. A few restaurants were cash only because they didn’t have internet. With banks and ATM’s closed, having cash ahead of storm is good.
Newer homes fared better. We saw some older homes lose shingles. Presumably this could be due to newer building codes, although we did see some homes missing tiles on the newer homes. I saw some pool cages down built to older codes and some untouched built to the newer codes. Of course, wind direction could affect these too.
The bottom line is SW Florida was lucky. We are grateful. Property damage was not as bad as expected and there was limited loss of life in Florida. Southwest Florida real estate after Hurricane Irma will be just fine, if not better. We will have a few weeks of rebuilding and repair but overall, we did well.
We have buyers. If you’re thinking of selling, let us know. Hurricane damage and flooding may wipe out some inventory for a while so we may be able to plug a buyer into your property soon.
If you’d like to search for your piece of paradise, check out www.LeeCountyOnline.com or call us at 239-489-4042 Power is not on at our office yet as of day we wrote this article, however we are taking calls remotely when we can.
We found a neat NOAA website that allows you to track damage to your Fort Myers property. Click on the Hurricane Irma Imagery and zoom in to the area. NOAA is updating this with new flights and sensors so new maps will be posted regularly.
Hurricane Preparation Tips- 3 Yr old video while we were still with RE/MAX. Tips still good though
Fort Myers Beach Sunset 1 Month Before Irma