19 Ways to Hurricane-Proof Your Home [Full Guide]

By Ygrene on March 11, 2022

The impact of hurricanes on climate change is an evolving process. Prior to the 70s, strong storms like 2017’s Hurricane Harvey occurred once every century. Since then, that average has increased to once every 16 years. While homeowners in coastal communities may not have to deal with more hurricanes, stronger, more intense storms are likely in the future. If you live in a vulnerable area, it’s important to properly prepare your home for hurricane season.

The first step is to evaluate the weak points on your property and invest in making the necessary home improvements and retrofits. These upgrades can give your home a better chance of surviving the winds and rains that accompany strong storms. Keep reading to learn about the hurricane house protections you can consider for each part of your home.

How to Hurricane-Proof Your House

From your windows to your landscaping, there are many different parts of your home that are vulnerable to a storm. Luckily, there are plenty of ways you can bolster your home’s defenses, starting with your windows.


Your windows are a weak spot in your home, especially where wind damage is concerned. If the glass in your windows breaks or if the window seals fail, water can enter your home during a storm. With that said, there are a few different ways you can help shore up your windows.

  1. Install impact-resistant windows: To protect you and your family against high winds and debris, you can install impact-resistant windows. These types of windows feature heavy frames and a laminated surface that keeps them from shattering. Some versions have two panes with a shatter-proof membrane in between them. Another potential benefit of impact-resistant windows is that they typically provide better insulation and can help make your home more energy-efficient.
  2. Update your skylights: When you’re considering upgrading the windows in your home to bolster them against the forces of a strong storm, don’t forget about your skylights. You can upgrade to a more durable glass or replace your skylight with a tubular daylighting device, which offers similar illumination with less glass surface area.
  3. Hurricane film: Although this option won’t protect your windows from high winds, hurricane film keeps out UV rays and prevents window glass from shattering.
  4. Install temporary hurricane shutters: Another window-protection option is to install storm or hurricane shutters. When closed, these shutters will protect the glass from flying debris and keep high winds from breaking the window and compromising the home’s structure. Hurricane shutters are available in many different forms. Perhaps you’ve seen people preparing for a hurricane by nailing pieces of plywood over their windows. A more solid alternative is panel hurricane shutters. These are removable panels that the homeowner can place in tracks installed around the windows when needed.
  5. Install permanent hurricane shutters: Hurricane shutters roll down like a garage door, while others have panels that open outward when not in use. These are effective, although some may require extra reinforcement with bolts or bars. The added advantage of permanent shutters is that they can provide shade on sunny days. This shade can help prevent the sun from heating up your home to uncomfortable temperatures.

19 Ways to Hurricane-Proof Your Home [Full Guide]


Your doors are another vulnerable point in your home, but you can replace them with impact-resistant versions to better withstand wind, rain, and debris.

  1. Upgrade to hurricane-proof doors: This durable door option delivers extra protection against wind and debris impacts. Impact-resistant doors should have heavy deadbolts or other features that will keep them closed during periods of high wind. If you have wood doors, you may want to replace them with aluminum or fiberglass doors because these are better able to withstand winds and direct blows from debris.

Garage Door

Traditional garage doors can crumple during the intense gusts of wind and impact from debris that may occur during a hurricane. Most hurricane damage begins when wind enters the home through the garage door. This becomes a huge risk if your garage doors are made of lightweight materials. 

  1. Upgrade your garage door: Hurricane garage doors are often a good investment. These replacement doors are built to withstand hurricane-force winds. 
  2. Retrofit your existing garage door: Another option is to get a vertical bracing system. Garage door manufacturers may sell such systems for their specific doors, or you can hire a contractor to install supports that are custom cut to fit your door.



Your roof is often the first line of defense against a storm, make sure your current roof can stand up to the challenge.

  1. Use hurricane clips on your roofing: Roofs are usually connected to the house with “toenails”. These are nails that are driven in at an angle. This connection is strong enough to withstand regular weather, but not necessarily tornados and high-category hurricanes. Hurricane clips, usually made from steel, strengthen the connection between the roof and the home’s rafters and trusses. This makes the roof less likely to lift off the frame in high winds.
  2. Replace your roof: Another option is to replace your roof entirely. A new roof can not only improve your home’s storm protection capabilities, but it can also help better insulate your home.
  3. Install a secondary water barrier: This type of barrier is designed to stop water from getting into your home in the event your roof fails. A layer of material is positioned right under your primary outer roof (shingles, tiles, etc).
  4. Inspect your roofing: After a storm season passes, make sure that you inspect your roofing to look for loose shingles and other damage. While you’re on the roof, it’s also a good time to check gutters to make sure they’re free of debris. Working gutters will help disperse water away from your home.

Note: Hurricane clips sometimes go by different names, such as “hurricane straps” or “hurricane ties.” Regardless of the name, they should all do the same thing: strengthen the connection between the frame of the house and the roof.


Besides your property’s structural elements, it’s also important to pay attention to other parts of your home, like your landscaping.

  1. Keep your plants well-maintained: Trees and plants should be trimmed regularly to make them more wind resistant. Cut down trees that will become hazardous in bad weather.
  2. Secure your patio furniture or bring it inside: When a storm is predicted, make sure your patio furniture doesn’t get destroyed by wind or debris – or cause damage to your home. Tie down your patio furniture or bring it inside. 
  3. Use sandbags to help keep out water: Sandbags don’t act as a permanent solution, but they can help redirect a storm surge.

19 Ways to Hurricane-Proof Your Home [Full Guide]

Hurricane Supplies

Besides investing in storm protection upgrades, it’s also a good idea to consider assembling supplies to help you if you have to ride out a hurricane.

  1. Put together an emergency kit: If you need to ride out a hurricane in your home, make sure you have at least three days’ worth of supplies in your home. Batteries, clean water, non-perishable food, candles, and a first-aid kit should be placed somewhere secure within your home that you can easily access in an emergency.

Hurricane Preparedness

The U.S. government’s READY.gov has a few additional suggestions for homeowners during hurricane season. 

  1. Know your evacuation route: Your city, county, or state should have published evacuation routes readily available
  2. Keep important paperwork safe: If flooding is a concern, you should remove important documents, electronics, and anything else of value from the lowest level of the home, if possible.
  3. Consider investing in a generator: A backup generator can provide power, even if the electrical grid goes out after a storm.

After a hurricane passes through, CDC.gov has guidance for the steps you should take in the aftermath to stay safe. For example, you should never go into floodwater and avoid downed powerlines. 

PACE Financing to Hurricane-Proof Your Home

If you’re ready to make storm protection upgrades to your home in preparation for hurricane season, you may want to consider Ygrene’s property-assessed clean energy (PACE) financing program. In some cases, Ygrene may cover 100% of the upfront cost of your hurricane-readiness improvements. 

If you're interested in getting financing for hurricane protection home upgrades, click below to get started on your PACE financing journey and get a decision within 30 minutes.