Here in Charleston SC, much like every other place in the world, you can’t hide from Mother Nature. Along with our temperate year-round climate and warm, sunny summer, we also have an established hurricane season from July 1 to November 1. Fortunately, our ability to detect storms days in advance has drastically improved (thanks technology!), allowing us to be proactive instead of reactive if a storm is predicted. For a homeowner in the lowcountry, especially one that owns a second home in Charleston, you should seek a property management firm that takes preventative measures pre-storm and necessary actions post-storm to help protect your home.
For those who own a second home in Charleston SC, you already understand the time and effort it takes to maintain and care for your home. When the state declares that there is a hurricane or tropical storm heading our way, that stress is amplified if you’re not there to adequately prepare. Many remember Hurricane Hugo that hit the Carolinas in 1989 as a Category 4, and the devastation left behind along coastal South Carolina. But with hurricanes even as recently as October of 2016, when Hurricane Matthew, made landfall as a Category 1, there was plenty of storm preparation that had to be made in advance. That is where we come in.
As the “boots-on-the-ground” for homeowners, our team mobilizes to quickly tend to the properties we manage before, during, and after the storm. As soon as a storm is named, we call all guests to inform them before their travel, or even if they’ve already arrived. From there, we stay on top of the forecast and listen to ALL updates and warnings, allowing us to keep our guests well informed as to whether it is safe to come to Charleston. If we deem that it is not, we move their vacation to a later date free of charge. More often than not, the storm will completely miss the Charleston area, but in the case that it does hit, we make sure to manage our guests’ travel plans appropriately.
If a storm is on the path to hit Charleston within 3 days, it is “go time” for the Luxury Simplified Retreats team. A detailed inspection is done on all houses, where everything is photo documented so we know exactly what to fix (if anything) when the storm has passed. Our in-house maintenance team is deployed to move all outdoor furniture inside and off ground level, board up all necessary windows, and place sand bags in front of doors in high flood zones. Electrical breakers are turned off for all large appliances like the A/C units and water heaters, preventing any electrical issues from rain or wind. A complete hurricane preparation plan is executed so by the time the storm hits, our owners can rest assured that their house is adequately fortified against the impending storm.
Once the hurricane or tropical storm is over, our team immediately visits all properties to open up the houses again and note any damage. Our maintenance team is on-hand to fix any small damage and our landscaper is sent out to clean up any debris. If there is any major damage detected, our in-house Luxury Simplified Renovations team is readily available to make necessary repairs. In a matter of days, our properties are right back to where they were prior to the storm and it’s business (or vacation) as usual!
Our number one goal for owners is peace of mind while we manage their property. This comes every day of the year, but especially if Mother Nature looks to throw something our way. Fortunately, Hugo was the last hurricane that had a devastating effect on the lowcountry – so don’t let that deter you from owning a home in this charming, coastal city.
From storm prep whenever needed, to routine maintenance and booking management, have a look at all we offer as a locally-based, boutique vacation rental management company.