Whether your water heater fell over, the kids forgot to turn off the bathtub faucet, the normally serene river down the road has burst its bank, or a 24-foot storm surge in Lampasas has wiped out your home, Water Damage happens. In fact, that’s why many homeowners carry insurance – to protect their homes from unpredictable catastrophes.
Unfortunately, one man’s catastrophe is another man’s problem. This is true especially when dealing with your insurance company over Water Damage Restoration claims. Is it a catastrophe or is it your problem? Is the flood event covered or not?
Most homeowners in Lampasas insurance policies exclude certain types of flooding so it’s useful to review your policy before and during the water restoration claims process. If you have National Flood Insurance, you should be prepared with that information as well.
Water damage and restoration claims are subject to all kinds of rules and loopholes and your insurance company knows exactly what they are doing – do you? If you’re getting the runaround from your insurance about a restoration claim, don’t take their word for it. Read your insurance policy and find out exactly what is covered. You pay your premiums for the service that the insurer provides. When it’s time for restoration for a covered loss, you don’t deserve to be short changed.
While many water claims are specifically excluded from an insurance policy, not all are. During hurricanes and major storms, some water damage is specifically excluded such as water damage from a storm surge. However, if your roof blows off and the rain damages the interior of your home, then the water restoration would likely be covered. Beware of the insurance agent that wants to classify damage as something other than it is. For example, if the agent claims the water damage is due to storm surge when it’s clear that the reason the home is water damaged is because the roof blew off, then stick up for yourself and demand that the adjuster look at the obvious.
In these cases, restoration compensation could be less than what’s needed thanks to an insurance adjuster whose eyes are on the bottom line, not what you are entitled to under the terms of your policy. Get a professional involved if you need help. Public insurance adjusters can act on your behalf and get a better settlement offer while specific contractors, such as roofers and rebuilders, can document the damage, make reasonable efforts, and back you up when you’re filing a restoration claim.
Your insurance company wants to save a few bucks while you want to make sure that you can restore your property. You are at odds with each other even though you are business partners. Get a third party involved and ensure that your restoration goes the way it should.
Water Damage Defined
Water damage can be defined as the damage to real estate or personal property by the encroachment of water. Flooding is a somewhat common occurrence with homes and businesses. Whenever flood damage happens, it can be a traumatic experience for the resident. In some cases, the resident is required to leave their business or residence until the restoration work is completed. This can, at times be a large inconvenience to the resident and can result in loss of income to the business.
How Water Problems Occur
There are many reasons that a home or business could become water damaged. One way water damage can occur is because of flooding due to rainstorms or other water accumulations. A second way that water damage can occur is due pipes and interior plumbing in buildings breaking and leaking water. This kind of damage can occur quickly, as in the case of a pipe breaking and suddenly discharging water or slowly due to a slow leak in a pipe that leaks for weeks or months until it's discovered. Whatever the initial cause for the water damage, it is important that the leak is stopped and the property is dried as soon as possible. Otherwise, additional damage may occur in the form of mold.
What To Do When an Emergency Occurs
When the property owner discovers that flooding or discharge of water has occurred on their property, the first thing they should do is, if possible, stop the leak by turning off the water. They should then contact a professional plumber immediately if the cause of the flooding is because of a pipe leak. If necessary, the plumber might need to call in a water damage restoration company to dry and remove the water from the property and restore the property to its original condition. It is absolutely critical that the property owner not delay in calling in professionals as the longer the water is allowed to remain, the higher the probability that mold will grow. If mold is allowed to grow on the property, the scope of the damage is greatly increased as is the cost to repair the damage.
Water Damage to Your Ceiling
Getting Water Damage Invoices Past Insurance Adjusters
When dealing with water damage to your home or business, it doesn't matter if the spill is large or small. The basic goal is always the same, to clean up the water and dry everything out. This should be done as soon as possible after the damage has occurred. The water is continuing to cause problems for as long as it stands, and more serious issues such as mold are only about 48 hours away. It is imperative that you act quickly.
Of course acting quickly does not mean acting ignorantly. Much of what is required to properly address water damage can be taken care of right now, before disaster strikes and leaves you hip deep in raw sewage. Taking the time to make sure your insurance covers water related problems is wise. Remember that if the problem can at all be traced back to homeowner negligence, then it will not be covered.
You can also rearrange your home to be more prepared in the event of a flood or other water damage event. Move appliances and valuable items to higher floors, an elevate power outlets and electrical boxes to higher wall positions. Of course none of this will guarantee less damage to your home, but then it can't hurt either.
Restoration - this is the process of taking care of the fine detail elements designed to return your home to its pre-loss condition. At this point the home is ready to welcome its inhabitants back.
Of course the process may be much more difficult than described, especially in larger cases of water damage, but the overall concept and direction remains unchanged. The process may also take place over a period of days or even weeks, again, depending on the size. The scope of the project alone makes it beyond the abilities of most homeowners.
This is why you should contact your local IICRC certified water damage restoration professionals. They are available 24/7 to service all of your flood restoration and water damage needs. A phone call gets a technician to your home within the hour, ready to assess your situation and begin water restoration procedures immediately.