8 Things To Do After Storm Water Damage: The Ultimate Guide

If you have suffered property damage due to a storm, you may be wondering what to do next. This blog post will guide you through the steps you need to take to file a claim and begin the process of repairing your home or business.

Remaining calm is key, as well as setting realistic expectations for the road ahead — it’ll be a long and complicated process of cleaning up, hiring help and navigating insurance claims. However, no matter how bad it looks, you’ll get through this.

8 steps to a Successful Restoration Project:

First, you will need to assess the damage and determine the extent of repairs that will be necessary. It’s important to document the damage after a natural disaster by taking photos of everything, including the roof, the exterior and interior of your home, and the flood line to show how high the water went. This will help when filing a homeowners insurance claim.

Once you have a clear idea of the damages and repairs that need to be made, you will need to file a claim with your insurance company. It’s important to file an insurance report as soon as possible after a disaster. Insurance companies are usually overwhelmed with claims, so the sooner you file yours, the better. You can usually file a report online or over the phone. While you wait for your insurance company to send an adjuster to inspect the damage and determine the amount of your coverage, you should focus on cleaning up and making sure your property is safe.

It’s important to protect your property from further damage after a disaster. Most homeowners’ insurance policies state that it’s the policyholder’s responsibility to protect what’s left as best you can. Early cleanup comes down to stopping additional damage. Leaking holes should be covered with a tarp. Board up broken windows. Get the tree off the roof. Prevent mold by mopping up water and removing wet items like books or mattresses.

It’s important to find a good, reputable contractors to help with water damage. Make sure to do your research and watch out for high-pressure sales tactics. Many scams happen after a disaster like this, so be sure to find someone established and trustworthy.

The Restoration company that you hire should take initial action (extract all water, cut walls and ceilings, etc.) and then work with you and your insurance company to develop a plan of action that will be approved by your insurance company to get your repairs underway as soon as possible.

When you drain the standing water, your belongings, as well as the floors and walls of your home, will still be soaked, especially if you have carpeting. To dry the water-logged areas, you’ll need to use professional equipment such as dehumidifiers and air movers to help dry out the affected areas.

You and your adjuster will work together to come to an agreement on what to keep (salvageable), what to throw away and how much money you’ll receive to repair or replace your belongings.

Drying the area, especially the walls and carpet, can prevent mold growth. The last thing you both want to do is have black mold spread throughout the affected area and have to file another home insurance claim for mold remediation and removal.

Mold can develop quickly after a flood, and it can be really tough to get rid of once it’s started growing. The faster you remove items from the water and start drying them, the less chance there is of them being ruined by mold.

Documenting all interactions with insurance companies will be crucial, so be sure to log every conversation. Make sure to include who you spoke with and their title, as some claims adjusters are outside contractors. Always track the date, time and content of the conversation for future reference. If you can get it in writing much better.

If you’ll need to move out until your property is habitable; your insurance should cover some additional living expenses for “loss of use” of a property. This could include the cost of a hotel, rent and even dining, depending on your policy. Keep detailed records and all receipts for the insurance company.

Send your insurance company copies of every estimate with a note asking if they approve of the work – even if they don’t respond, you’ll have a record that you communicated with them.

Please be patient as it might take a week or two for the insurance company to get around to inspecting your property after a catastrophe. As stated before, if you have any immediate needs, reach out to a reliable storm damage restoration company that can tarp your roof, board up any openings, and take other measures to prevent further damage. These services will likely be covered by your insurance.

Most importantly, stay safe. Do not take a risk if it is not safe to do so. If you have any questions or concerns, reach out to your insurance company or a qualified attorney.

“Even the darkest night will end and the sun will rise” – Victor Hugo

Additional Resources for Flood Cleanup information is available in the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency:

“Resources for Flood Cleanup”

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