El Niño Is Coming - 5 Ways to Get Your House Ready

A lot of us know that El Niño means little boy in Spanish, for long time European soccer fans like me we know him as Fernando Torres, some may know him as Chris Farley from a SNL skit.
Its now a virtual consensus by the meteorologist/climatologist that El Niño has the potential to become one of the most powerful on record. So what is El Niño and how does it affect those living Southern California (including the Southwest, Southern U.S.)

Relative to California, El Nino is weather phenomenon that occurs every few years where there's warmer than average waters in the Eastern equatorial Pacific Ocean off the coast of Central and South America. When this occurs, like in some of the bigger occurrences in 1982-83 and 1997-98, it brings a lot of rain to California. 

While this is great news for California's drought, it also means mudslides, flooding and more. 

Now is the best time to start preparing your home for potential record breaking rainy season. So here are some tips to get your home ready.
  1. Check Your Roof
    Its recommended that you check your roof twice a year and this time its no
    question it should be done. Best to hire a professional roofer to inspect the roof properly, last thing you need is to call the roofer as your home is being flooded and your belongings being damaged. Who knows when the roofing company can make it to your home during the rain storm.
    Also check rain gutters, make sure the pipes from the rain gutters are clear.
  2. Check your Trees\Vegetation around the Home
    Trim the trees around your house. Thin out the branches and remove all dead limbs. Weight from it could bring limbs or the tree down with heavy
    winds/rain. Especially if the tree is over or adjacent to your home. This process can be dangerous so be sure to hire a landscaper or tree professional. If you have a slope behind your property, good idea to hire a professional to assess and take preventative measures from any type of landslide or mud flows. Also clear out vegetation that could clog drainage.
  3. Clear Drainage
    Speaking of drainage, check all drainage from your backyard, you can simply pour some water into it and see if it comes out to the street. Or hire a plumber to inspect the drain pipe, make sure its clear. Important as to prevent flooding, not only water entering your home, but could also damage the home's foundation.
  4. Sandbags
    I know sounds crazy to think about this now, however if your neighborhood has a history of flooding, it doesn't hurt to be prepared by having sandbags at your disposal. Once a storm is headed your way, you're not out with the masses and waiting who knows how long to get your sandbags filled.
  5. Check Your Insurance
    Last on my list, but very important. Check your Homeowners Insurance. Make sure there's adequate coverage, like floor insurance. Take pictures of all your valuables and big items of your home. Take stock of approximate cost of them. I would suggest you upload all that info into the cloud like dropboxgoogle drive or any other cloud service of your choice.
Hope this helps, never too early to get prepared, based on previous El Niño, it tends to start raining around November with the peak around January/February.

Feel free to share other tips to get ready for the season.