State Farm shares affordable wildfire protection tips for home insurance customers

Home insurance - Wildfire Protection Tips

The blazes have become more frequent in recent years and are leading to substantial damage.

May is Wildfire Preparedness Month, and in the spirit of this time before the blazes typically start for the year, State Farm has provided homeowners with ways they can help to protect their homes and properties within a limited budget.

In 2023, 2.6 million acres were burned by 56,000 wildfires in the US alone

Last year, over 4,300 homes and commercial structures were destroyed by wildfires in the US, according to data released by the National Interagency Fire Center.  The blazes impact everywhere from California to New England, also including often unexpected states such as Florida and Hawaii.

Home insurance - Wildfire Risk

The blazes are unpredictable and can occur in any part of the country at any time.  That said, there is a season in which they are more common, and State Farm is hoping that homeowners insurance customers will implement some – if not all – of their recommended budget-friendly strategies to protect properties and minimize risk in case wildfires occur in the area.

The insurer underscored that planning ahead – not waiting until the blazes are already around – is the best strategy.

State Farm’s wildfire protection tips for homeowners insurance customers

The following is some of the advice the insurer shared for its customers as well as any property owners in Wildfire Preparedness Month.

The first recommended step is to create a non-combustible barrier around the home with a width of at least 5 feet, including around any vegetation on the property.  This includes steps such as removing vines from the walls of any structures, trimming overhanging trees, branches and other types of foliage, and cleaning up debris with a focus on anything flammable such as pinecones, pine needles, dried leaves, and so on.

Cleaning the gutters of combustible materials and other debris such as pine needles and leaves is also a good way to remove kindling from the immediate area in and around a home.

Openings such as vents in a home can be covered with wire mesh to help prevent embers from being drawn into a home where a fire can start.  Similarly, ember and fire-resistant soffit vents can be installed.

Home insurance customers with wooden fencing are advised to consider replacing with metal fencing if the fence is old, or simply treat the existing wooden fencing with fire retardant so that it is less likely to act as a combustible material if embers should land.

Around a home’s landscaping, rock-based materials such as gravel or crushed stone can perform the same function as mulch, but without being combustible.

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