According to the National Weather Service, thunderstorms cause several hundred million dollars in property damage each year.

If you have a business with a brick and mortar store and inventory, this can be troublesome, especially when considering the other types of weather your area may face.

Whether you sell patio sets or stoves, there are steps you can take to protect your inventory from the wind, hail and water damage severe weather can bring. Protect your inventory with these three tips:

  1. Trim trees —Hire a professional to trim branches away from your inventory and buildings. This prevents limbs from falling and damaging your building or goods. Trimming your tree branches also prevents them from falling on power lines, which can delay your business’s operations.
  2. Move your inventory. If you know a strong storm is coming, place as much inventory as possible indoors. If there is a risk of flooding or your building has flooded before, move items on higher shelves or delay delivery shipments. If feasible, consider moving your inventory offsite.
  3. Cover your inventory. If your inventory is composed of large outdoor pieces that cannot be moved, cover them with thick blankets or tarps. This can prevent hail damage.

In the event of serious weather, ensure you have a plan in place. If your area could have a tornado or hurricane, have a plan in place should your employees or customers need to take cover or evacuate.

It can also be beneficial to decide ahead of time how customers, employees and deliveries will be notified of any potential delays and who will be the point of contact for client communications.

Even the most prepared business may be exposed to damage from summer weather. Take steps to protect your inventory from damage or loss on location, in transit and in storage.