Recovering from Flood Damage to Your Home

The weather can be unpredictable. Take Hurricane Sandy for instance. The level of flood damage that occurred was unprecedented. Many people had so much flood damage westchester that they had to temporarily move out of their homes until they were able to get back in and clean up. Should you be in the unfortunate situation where you have flood damage, here are some tips on what to do to get you on your way to recovery.

Call your insurance company
The first step to recovery is filing a claim with the insurance company that holds your homeowner’s policy. Once you have filed a claim, your insurance company will send out an adjuster to assess the damage so they can determine the monetary value of your losses. Depending on your insurance company policy, it can take up to 90 days to receive your money. Be patient. Once you get your check, then you can start to fix the damage and move on.

Check for structural damage
If the damage was severe, you want to make sure you check for structural damage before entering your home again. If you are unsure if your home is safe to move back in, you should seek the opinion of a professional general contractor or home inspector that is familiar with these types of situations. Don’t risk being trapped should your structure be weak and give way to a collapse.

Take photos
Once you are safely back in your home, you will want to document the damage. Take pictures of all damaged furniture, cabinets, appliances, clothing, and anything else in your home that no longer can be used. You also want to make sure you take pictures of any water that is still left as well as any water marks on walls that were left behind. Water marks can show how deep the water was before it receded. These photos will be helpful in backing up the claim you filed with your insurance company.

Make a list of damaged or lost items
In addition to taking pictures, you should also make a list of your damaged and lost property. If you are able to retrieve or salvage receipts, you should keep those handy as well for your insurance claim.

Don’t turn the power on right away
Safety should be number one when you return to your home. Once you re-enter your home, do not turn on the power right away. You should seek the professional opinion and an inspection from a licensed electrician. Turning on the power when it’s not deemed safe can pose too many potential hazards.

Mold clean-up and prevention
When you are ready to clean up your home after a flood, you should always protect yourself with gloves, a mask, and proper clothing to avoid contamination and breathing in mold spores. Since mold thrives in wet and damp areas, make sure you dispose of any items that are damaged.  Any other items that you intend to keep should be washed properly with bleach or pine and hung to dry so that mold cannot continue to grow on the surfaces.