Reach Out to These Four Entities if You Don't Have Flood Insurance
Floods are the root of many serious problems if it's not treated on time.
Unless you are located on a specific flood plane where having flood insurance is a requirement, you likely do not have coverage for any damage caused by a storm surge or flood. While that might not be the news you were hoping to hear, you might still have options. Before you dial your local storm restoration service in New Bern, NC, contact your insurance company to discuss the specifics of your policy. If you are not covered for external flooding, then reach out to four organizations for help.
The Federal Emergency Management Association might offer some relief if your area is deemed a site of natural disaster. However, without a formal declaration from the president, FEMA cannot provide access to grants. If a major disaster is declared, you can apply for a grant only for your primary home; as it is a grant, you will not need to pay the money back.
2. State or Local Government
Those without flood insurance can also reach out to state and local governments for assistance. While local municipalities might not offer grants, your local emergency management department might be able to give information on other resources.
3. Nonprofit Organizations
You can also reach out to the different nonprofit organizations in the area. Many nonprofits step up after natural disasters. Some might offer food and water, and others might provide temporary shelter to those in need. You might even find organizations like United Way, which can assist with home repairs and cleanup.
Finally, if you cannot find help from the above resources, try the Small Business Administration. During times of crisis, the SBA often opens up low-cost loans to those in need. SBA disaster loans typically have low-interest rates, between 4% and 8%, with loan caps of $200,000, depending on your needs.
While flood insurance is not a requirement in every area, it is something worth considering. However, even with coverage, there are ways to find assistance.
3 Ways SERVPRO Helps With Claims
Our team is ready when you need us.
SERVPRO is an industry leader in fire and water cleanup and restoration. Claim services help insurance agents reduce costs, while also providing superior service to their clients. These are three of the ways the company can help with your claims.
1. Fast Response
The priority of our team is to provide an immediate emergency response to customers. Our team acts quickly to assess the damage and begin taking steps to prevent future damage, such as mold growth. This helps you keep costs down and helps your clients restore their property as quickly as possible. Wherever your clients are located, there is probably a franchise professional in New Bern, NC, ready to assist them.
2. Emphasis on Restoration
Restoring property costs less than replacing it. Our claim services team works to restore property whenever possible. Pretesting is completed for every loss so that we can quickly identify which property can be restored and which needs to be replaced. Our professionals have the latest training and equipment needed to clean and restore valuable documents, photos, and other fragile contents. We can also deal with odor removal and sewage issues, in addition to cleaning and restoring carpets and upholstery.
3. Electronic Claims Service
Our electronic claims service makes it easy for you to access all of the information about your clients' claims. You will be provided with an Excel formatted report and photos of valuable items and an itemized loss inventory. The electronic job file includes the first notice of loss, loss photos, estimates, and scanned forms and paperwork. You can access all pending and completed jobs and new assignments online. Additionally, you have access to job cost data and performance comparisons to industry standards.
SERVPRO claim services are designed to meet the needs of adjusters and clients. Working with our team will make the claims process as hassle-free as possible for you and your clients.
How Long Does It Take for Your Home To Dry?
If a broken pipe is not repaired as soon as possible, the water can cause big damage.
One of the most common issues that homeowners face is water damage. Sadly, the longer the water stays, the worse the problem becomes. Whether bursting pipes or a leaking roof is to blame, an immediate response is vital. The drying process of putting your home back in order may take several days or longer, so you need to get started right away.
Factors That Affect the Drying Time
It's hard to determine exactly how long it will take to recover from the damage caused by burst pipes. In many cases, it takes between three to five days, but if there are wood floors or other special circumstances, the drying process may take a couple of weeks. Some of the factors affecting the length of time include:
Source of Water - Water from a clean source, such as the kitchen tap, doesn't require the same level of specialization as flooding from a sewage backup.
Amount of Damage – Naturally, the more water from the pipes and the further it spread, the longer it will take for repairs and cleanup to be complete.
Availability of Equipment – If you have the right tools to fix the broken pipes and set up fans, you can get the drying process started almost immediately. Without the right tools, you'll have a delay as long as it takes to find those supplies.
One reason homeowners reach out to SERVPRO is that local New Bern, NC, franchisees have access to all the equipment necessary to complete the job. Water damage cleanup and repair technicians arrive Faster to Any Size Disaster because franchises are owned and operated locally while supported by corporate offices.
A Quick Start for Success
Without the right equipment, it can be difficult to determine whether the home is thoroughly dry. However, taking factors into consideration and working with professionals is a good way to get an estimate. As soon as you realize there are bursting pipes, get started on the drying process.
Should Mold Damaged Belongings Be Cleaned or Thrown Away?
Personal belongings with water damage.
Some of the things people own have a useful purpose. Others mostly have sentimental value. Some have a little bit of both. One of the most difficult decisions homeowners face after having mold cleaning done is whether to keep the mold-damaged property or throw it away.
What Property Should be Thrown Away or Kept After Mold Damage
Property That Should Be Thrown Away
If you hire a restoration company in New Bern, NC, it will try to save as much of your property as possible. However, some types of property will usually need to be thrown away because of mold damage:
- Items with porous surfaces
- Items with visible mold
- Items exposed to floodwater
Common items in these categories include carpet, cardboard, mattresses, stuffed animals and upholstered furniture. Most moldy paper products will also need to be discarded. However, some items with sentimental value, such as family photos, may be able to be saved by using a freeze-drying process.
Food that is moldy or has come in contact with floodwater should be thrown out. Most food preparation items will need to be discarded because the cost of mold cleaning often exceeds the cost of replacing the items.
Property That Can Be Saved
Items that are made from materials with a solid surface, such as glass, plastic or metal, usually can be saved with mold remediation. Most fabric clothing can be washed in your usual laundry detergent unless the fabric has been damaged. Leather items usually need professional cleaning.
A HEPA vacuum can be used to preserve clothing and paper materials that did not get wet and have no visible mold. Electronics and appliances that were exposed to mold, but were not underwater may be able to be saved.
Keeping an inventory of your personal belongings on hand can help you identify which items are particularly important to try to save after mold cleaning and which can be easily replaced. Talk to your insurance company before you make any final decisions to ensure they are willing to cover the cost.
How the Fire Restoration Process Works
Water damage in residential home.
After a house fire, things can be extremely stressful and confusing. Knowing the fire restoration process can help calm some of the anxiety.
Fire can leave you with several types of damage. These are:
A good fire remediation company in New Bern, NC, can help you with each of these types.
The Fire Restoration Process
The very first thing that a cleanup company will do is assess the damage. Some companies even work with insurance companies to make sure your damages are taken care of as quickly as possible. When you are ready for a fire rebuild, you will know exactly what is necessary.
The first part of a good restoration service is the boarding and tarping. This protects your property from further water or vandalism damage.
Water Damage Restoration
It might seem strange, but water damage remediation is a big part of fire restoration. Even if a storm didn't cause the fire, there is still probably water damage. Firefighters often use water or other chemicals to put out the fire. Things that are water damaged need to be cleaned and thoroughly dried before rebuilding can begin.
Smoke and Soot Cleanup
Smoke and soot damage are some of the worst parts of the fire cleanup process. Your restoration company will remove and clean anything damaged by smoke or soot. This includes the black film it leaves behind and the strong smells. Unfortunately, this damage is more than a simple airing out can handle.
Once the cleanup is underway, but before rebuilding services can begin, everything needs to be sanitized. This leaves your home smelling better and will protect your belongings from molds and mildews. Most companies will utilize various chemicals and techniques to make sure your home is safe to return to.
After all of this is done, true fire restoration can begin. Each step is vital to getting your home back to its original condition.
How To Get Rid of Odors After Flooding
Flooding can cause damage to your building.
Your property in New Bern, NC, can take on a lot of damage if it floods during a storm. Between sewer overflows, mold growth and other problems, the storm damage restoration experts you hire probably have a lot of work to do. Because flood water is contaminated, a vital part of the cleanup process will include disinfecting and deodorizing every surface and item that remains in your building.
Getting Rid of Odors After Flooding
Just because items are soaked from flooding, that doesn’t mean they automatically have to be thrown away. Your restoration team is trained and equipped to salvage many items damaged in the storm:
- Office furniture
Some of the odor that lingers after a storm is likely from mold growth. Fungus can start to gather and spread on surfaces in as little as 24 hours after a flooding event, particularly if the humidity levels in your building are high. By incorporating mold testing and remediation into the overall cleanup process, technicians are able to stop this secondary damage before it gets out of hand. Once the mold problem is resolved, the smell that accompanies it will be gone, too.
Standing water and sewage loss can compromise the structural integrity of your building. It is possible that part of your flooring, walls and ceiling will have to be torn out and replaced. After all the materials that can’t be saved are removed and the affected area is dried, the remaining structure must be sanitized to get rid of any bacteria that the water left behind.
Contaminated water in your commercial building can lead to many problems, including structural damage, mold growth and ruined belongings. Certified cleanup professionals can not only disinfect your building but also deodorize it. A thorough restoration process ensures that your space is free from all the effects of the storm damage so that you can get back to business as usual.
Cleaning Up After Category Three Water Damage
A toilet overflow can lead to category 3 water damage.
A flood in a commercial facility is problematic. Not only can the flood water damage equipment, property, and inventory, it can result in business interruption. The key to resolving flooding issues, especially those stemming from category three water sources, is to hire an effective, licensed, and insured restoration service in New Bern, NC. These companies will use a proven five-step method to restore your building, allowing you to return to full operations.
5-Step Clean up Method After Water Damage
1. Turn Off the Source
The primary concern in a category three or black water crisis is terminating the source of the flood. If a toilet overflow is the culprit, the water supply or waste line needs to be shut off or sealed to prevent any more water from entering the facility.
2. Remove Black Water
When the source of the water is under control, the restoration team can get to work removing the flood water from the building. Most disasters will only require shop vacs or pumps, but in significant floods, the company might use a pump truck.
3. Thoroughly Dry the Affected Area
With the water removed, the restoration service can begin drying out the property. The service team will probably open all windows and doorways as well as use fans and air movers. Depending on the time of year, dehumidifiers might be brought in to reduce the risk of mold development.
4. Clean and Disinfect
The crew will need to disinfect any and all surfaces that came into contact with the category three water. Some items will not be salvageable, so you might need to get comfortable with disposing of some things.
5. Restore the Area
With the area clean and disinfected, the team can begin restoring the facility, replacing carpets, drywall, insulation, anything flood-affected. When the crew is finished, you will not be able to tell there was ever a disaster.
Flood water can lead to significant interruptions and costs. The key to surviving the crisis is to bring in a restoration team as soon as possible to repair the damage.
4 Steps To Take To Prepare a Fire Evacuation Plan
Prepare a Fire Evacuation Plan
Although hundreds of thousands of house fires occur every year, most people don't think it will ever happen to them. Having a fire escape plan in place can be the difference between life and death for you and your family. This guide will provide an overview of how to create a fire evacuation plan.
4 Step Guide to Prepare a Fire Evacuation Plan
1. Include Everyone in Your Plan
If you have any household members with special needs, such as children, pets or elderly or disabled family members, it is important to include their needs in your emergency escape plan. Assign a family member to assist them and a second family member as a backup.
2. Identify at Least Two Escape Routes
Fires are unpredictable and your first choice of escape route may not be accessible. Identify at least two ways to get out of every room in your house. Make sure all escape routes open easily and that emergency release devices are installed on any security systems.
3. Choose a Meeting Place
Your fire escape plan should include a place where your household will gather once they get out of the house. This will make it easier to account for anyone who may be trapped in the home. Choose a specific location such as a neighbor's house, mailbox or stop sign. Emphasize that if someone is not accounted for, emergency personnel should be notified. No one should return to the house.
4. Make a List of Contacts
Make a list of people you may need to contact after a fire, such as your insurance company or a fire restoration company in New Bern, NC. Store it in a safe location outside of your home.
A fire in your home can quickly create chaos and confusion. Your family will have a much better chance of escaping without injury if you have planned and practiced a fire escape plan before a fire occurs.
3 Reasons Not To Wait for an Insurance Adjuster
Storms in New Bern, NC, don't allow homeowners much time to prepare. They can come without much warning and leave a lot of water and flood damage in their path. When large storms roll through the community, it is often difficult for the flood insurance adjuster to get to your home before water and mold damage occur. Begin your flood claim as soon as possible after the flood, but don't wait for the adjuster before you begin repairs and cleanup.
Don't Wait For an Insurance Adjuster
1. Damage Gets Worse With Time
Water is notorious for causing damage that worsens over time:
- The structural components of your home may deteriorate and weaken.
- Mold growth takes place within just a couple of days.
- Secondary damage may not be covered by your insurance policy; this includes damage that happens while you wait for the adjuster to arrive.
Don't risk increased damage and costs by waiting.
2. There's Work You Can Do
Instead of watching the damage and mess get worse, be proactive about addressing the restoration of your home. For example, you could document and take pictures of the damage. You can move belongings to dry areas of the home or sort your possessions according to whether they should be tossed or cleaned and repaired. You can also contact water, mold, and flood damage professionals for cleanup and restoration.
3. Cleanup Experts Work Closely With Insurance Providers
Many insurance companies prefer that cleanup experts handle the repairs and other restoration efforts after flooding. This is because the professionals prevent further damage, keep careful records, work to keep costs low, and generally avoid damage that untrained homeowners may cause.
If a storm has caused damage to your property, and the flood insurance adjuster won't make it to your property for several days or longer, don't put off cleanup efforts. An immediate response is the best way to mitigate further damage and get your family and home back to your normal routines.
Reasons To Consider Professional Water Damage Mitigation in New Bern
Don't let complications from a water damage send your money down the drain - call the professionals at SERVPRO.
The internet has an answer for most any question we can come up with, DIY or otherwise. Yet, contrary to what this wealth of information might suggest, there are some jobs that are best suited to certified professionals. Water damage remediation is an excellent example. The technicians at SERVPRO of Craven/Pamlico are skilled and proficient at not just getting the job done, but doing it the right way. Armed with the specialized tools and know-how of over 2 decades worth of experience, SERVPRO of Craven/Pamlico is a locally owned and operated leader in water damage mitigation. Some of the many benefits of hiring professionals to take care of your water damage needs include:
Safety: The nature of the source of water that may have damaged your home or business can greatly impact the way things are taken care of. There are three different classification of water; clean water, grey water, and black water. Black water is the most concerning type of damage and can absolutely be a health concern if not taken care of properly. This is water that could have been in contact with human waste, such as toilet water and sewage. Black water is a breeding ground for harmful bacteria and pathogens.
Discreet Damages: Water will flow and pool into any area it can. This will commonly lead to water that is hidden from the naked eye, such as inside of walls and underneath of flooring. DIY water mitigation can sometimes fail to find all water and potentially lead to significantly more time consuming and costly repairs.
Less Stress: The professional restoration process means you can rest easy knowing that every effort has been made to get the job done right.