How Do Hurricanes Destroy Houses?

Posted on May 9, 2024


Frances Badayos | author

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ICHQ | Site Author

During hurricane season, tens of thousands of homeowners in and around New Orleans brace themselves for the potential onslaught of these dangerous storms. However, you can only do so much to prepare for these unpredictable and destructive storms.

Can hurricanes destroy houses? Unfortunately, hurricanes can wreak havoc on your home, but our team at Insurance Claim HQ can help you assess the extent of the damage, negotiate with your insurance company, and weather the storm. Contact a hurricane damage lawyer serving New Orleans today.

How Can Hurricanes Destroy Houses?

Hurricanes are powerful and devastating natural disasters, and they have the potential to damage or destroy just about anything in their path.

So, how do hurricanes destroy houses? A variety of different destructive forces come into play.

High winds

The National Weather Service considers wind threats in Greater New Orleans to be “extreme” when they exceed 110 mph. At this speed, hurricane-force winds pose a serious threat to lives and structures, and they can also uproot trees and cause debris to fly around.

Flying debris

Flying debris caused by high winds can include everything from branches and patio furniture to roof shingles and other construction materials. In the chaos of a strong storm, virtually anything can become a projectile, creating major risks for property and personal safety.

Storm surge

Storm surges occur when high winds and low atmospheric pressure raise the sea level to dangerous levels, and they can cause serious damage and devastation in low-lying areas.


While tornadoes during hurricanes are relatively rare in and around coastal Louisiana, when they do occur, the high winds and potential for destruction they bring with them can make an already dangerous situation even more dire.

Even when a hurricane leaves a home still standing, they can cause considerable damage and destruction.

Effects of a Destructive Hurricane on a Home

Hurricanes can damage many aspects of a home’s interior and exterior, costing homeowners time and money while potentially rendering their properties unusable. Depending on the state of your home and others in the area after the storm it could take months or even years to fully repair your home.

Roof and deck damage

Few parts of a home are more important than its roof, but hurricane-force winds can tear off shingles and roof panels, exposing the interior of the home to damage. Hurricanes can also rip apart outdoor patios, decks, and porches, leaving even more devastation in their wake.

Damage to exterior features and utilities

Hurricanes can also damage outdoor utility systems, potentially harming your plumbing, electrical, or HVAC systems. These powerful storms can also damage outdoor grills, hot tubs, and turf and cause power outages, gas leaks, and water damage.

Siding and exterior damage

Strong, powerful storms can also damage your home’s exterior. They can damage the siding, exposing the house’s interior to hazards. They can also detach gutters and downspouts, which can cause water to collect, raising the chances of foundational damage. Another way hurricanes can destroy houses is by breaking glass doors and windows and ripping doors entirely from their hinges, leaving the inside of a home vulnerable to storm damage.

Foundational damage

Hurricanes often cause foundational damage, especially in areas with storm surges or soil erosion. In some cases, the forces from the storm can be strong enough to remove smaller homes from their foundations altogether.

Structural failure

Hurricanes can also lead to structural failure depending on a home’s structural integrity and the storm’s strength. Walls can collapse under pressure, and other weak points in construction can also fail under the force of high winds.

This is especially likely in homes not constructed with high wind loads.

How Can Our Team Help?

Hurricanes can displace you. If a hurricane’s aftermath makes you feel overwhelmed, you are not alone. The insurance company’s damage assessments and negotiations with their adjusters may be on the horizon. You may also be grappling with finding a new place to live and replacing your damaged belongings.

Our hurricane damage lawyers have extensive experience helping Louisiana homeowners navigate complex claims and can help you sort through your options in the aftermath of a major storm.

Was Your Home Destroyed by a Hurricane? Contact Us

Hurricanes have destroyed many Gulf Coast homes. When your house is impacted, we can step up. If you need a hand assessing property damage, reviewing your insurance company’s offer or navigating your hurricane damage claim in the wake of a storm, Insurance Claim HQ can help. Contact us online or call 844-964-0778 to explore your options with a knowledgeable attorney.