Disclaimer: This information is general in nature only. While Budget Direct has endeavoured to ensure the information we’ve relied on is accurate and current, we do not guarantee it. Budget Direct accepts no liability for this information.

As a nation, we’re far too familiar with the impact bushfires can have on our beautiful country and communities.

Unfortunately, being prepared for the inevitable is something we have to contend with, so when bushfire season rolls around in your area, you’ll want to make sure you and your home are prepared as possible.

To help minimise risk to your property, we’ve curated a step-by-step checklist you can use when bushfire season arrives.

See more of Budget Direct’s home safety guides.

Before bushfire season

Ideally, you’ll start prepping your property right at the start of the bushfire season, and keep things well-maintained, especially through the riskiest times of year. There are 4 key areas you’ll want to cover – your home’s structure, access points, the local vegetation, and your personal effects.

Find out when bushfire season might affect your area.

Structure

Clear leaves, twigs, bark and other debris from the roof and gutters
Purchase and test the effectiveness of gutter plugs
Enclose open areas under decks and floors
Install fine steel wire mesh screens on all windows, doors, vents, and weep holes
Install metal gutter guards
Point LPG cylinder relief valves away from the house
Conduct maintenance checks on pumps, generators, and water systems
Seal all gaps in external roof and wall cladding.

Access

Display a prominent house or lot number, in case it’s required in an emergency
If there are tree branches you can trim, try and do so to provide access for fire trucks around your property (you’ll want at least 4m of height, and 4m of width).

Vegetation

Reduce vegetation loads along the access path
Mow your grass regularly
Remove excess ground fuels and combustible material (long dry grass, dead leaves and branches)
Trim low-lying branches two metres from the ground surrounding your home.

Personal

Check that you have sufficient personal protective clothing and equipment
Relocate flammable items away from your home, including woodpiles, paper, boxes, crates, hanging baskets and garden furniture
Check your first-aid kit is fully stocked
Make sure you have appropriate insurance for your home and vehicles
Have a bushfire emergency plan in place (for what you’ll do in the event of a bushfire).

If a bushfire arises

If you receive warning that a bushfire may threaten your property (or if you suspect this yourself), it’s time to fall back on your pre-prepared bushfire emergency plan.

To help, we’ve put together a complete guide to preparing a home emergency plan.

Designated safer areas

One decision you can make ahead of bushfire season is where you’ll go if you’re forced to relocate. Thankfully, most regions have simple guides to their designated safe areas:

Ensure your insurance is up to date

Don’t wait until after something goes wrong to find out what your insurance covers. If your area is particularly threatened by natural events (like bushfires or floods), make sure your Home & Contents Insurance will cover you.

Budget Direct offers Bushfire Insurance as part of their Home & Contents Insurance policy, so in the events of a large-scale fire, you can be covered for debris removal, repairs/replacement of your home and belongings, and temporary accommodation as needed. It’s also worth keeping in mind that most insurers have a 72 hour wait period, between when you take out the policy and when you’re covered in the event of bushfire or grassfire.

If you’re not a customer, you can find out more about how Budget Direct can help you get your Home & Contents Insurance Solved™.

 

See more of Budget Direct’s home safety guides.