Owning a home for the first time is a dream come true for everyone. Nothing beats the feeling of finally moving into your new condominium unit or house and lot after months (or even years) of making all the preparations and sacrifices.
However, there are still a few more important concerns that you have to consider, now that you’ve become a first-time homeowner. One of these is usually the last thing you want to think of, but it should be top of mind: preparing for natural calamities, such as typhoons and earthquakes.
Around 20 typhoons enter the Philippines every year, and 8 to 9 of these typhoons actually make landfall in the country. And about 18 earthquakes happen in the Philippines every day, but very occasionally a destructive Intensity VII tremor breaks through to cause actual damage.
As a first-time homeowner, it is thus important that you should have a handy survival kit to handle most natural emergencies. You’ll want to have these essentials in that emergency kit:
Flashlights, candles, and solar lamps. Power outages often follow strong typhoons or earthquakes. Sure, some condominiums do have standby generators. In case you do not have one, flashlights, candles, and those rechargeable solar lamps may come in handy, especially if the power goes out in the middle of the night.
Candles may pose a fire hazard, but they are still a good addition to your flashlights and lamps because most of the time, power outages are unpredictable. You will never know when you’re going to need that trusty candle, especially if the batteries in your flashlight suddenly run out of juice.
Don’t forget the accessories that keep these things going: matches (for candles) and extra batteries (for flashlights). Make sure you keep your solar lamps fully charged.
Power banks for your gadgets. A drained or “dead” smartphone can be a liability in case of an emergency. There’s no reason for you to be caught without a power bank; these handy peripherals have become inexpensive and having an extra power bank in your emergency kit will serve you well.
Just make sure that you check your extra power bank, and charge it from time to time. These are also batteries, and nothing can be more frustrating than finding out that your extra power bank is just a brick!
A list of emergency numbers. This might seem like a no-brainer, but how many of us have the emergency numbers of a hospital, a local police station, or a nearby fire station stored in our smartphones?
How about printing these numbers out and keeping a laminated copy inside your emergency kit? You might not need these emergency numbers, but you’ll never know.
First-aid kit. You might already have a medicine cabinet with a decent supply of tablets and pills for stomachaches, bruises, allergies, fever, cough, etc. However, it might be good if you also throw in some heat packs, cold compress kits, and a digital thermometer.
Emergency food and water. You’ve most likely done your homework when it comes to finding a safe location to move in. Although it might seem far-fetched that your new home is in a flood-prone area, you still need to prepare for the worst. Natural disasters, such as floods, can be very unpredictable and might affect you even if you’ve prepared for the possibility.
Experts recommend keeping three days’ worth of emergency food and water. It’s okay if you have them in cans — just make sure you have can openers handy! And check for best before dates regularly so you can swap out perishable supplies when you need to.
Nothing beats the feeling of having your very own home and knowing that with the right amount of preparation, you and your loved ones can always feel safe.