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Assessing Flood Damage
Once your home has been ravaged by a flood, it is important to take the proper steps to assess the damage that has been done. It is impossible to begin any repair and restoration job without having an idea of the extent of the problem and developing a roadmap for results. Understanding the extent of the flood damage to your home or business will assist not only you but also your insurance adjuster when it comes to processing the claim.
A professional flood damage restoration company is ideal for such a job, since they are experienced in providing fast and accurate assessments. This allows you and your family to get back to normal life as rapidly as possible.
The process starts with a closer inspection of the damaged area, walking around the structure and taking notes on areas and items that were damage, as well as the water levels on each wall for later reference. Photo or video records are also invaluable in this area, as it will provide proper documentation long after the memory of the event has become hazy and questionable.
When making your visual record, begin outside with the roof, and make note of details such as collapsed areas, missing or damaged shingles or flashing, damage to the gutter system, cracks in the chimney, or any other stained or cracked exterior surface.
Walls may also be completely or partially collapsed, with broken windows, and other signs of water intrusion, while the front and back yards may be flooded over with damaged landscaping and flora.
Once the outside has been taken care of, move indoors, checking the attic for any signs of water on the ceiling, walls, or floors, and the same goes for each interior room, taking care to examine power outlets and phone jacks. Wood may be warped or damaged, and windows broken.
Bathrooms may see damage to bathtubs and sinks, as well as countertops and flooring (which may become lumpy and uneven following cases of water damage. In the basement you may find wet or cracked foundations, walls, and flooring, as well as damage to the home’s duct work and piping.
Once you have accounted for the structure, then you may wish to move on and start documenting the level of damage to various individual items in the home. If possible, provide receipts for each item, as this will make the adjuster’s job easier.
Do not switch on any appliances that were exposed to water, and list every piece of damaged furniture you can find. Open all cabinets and dressers and check inside, since mold may be present in these locations. Also list all carpets, rugs, fabrics, curtains, and upholstery. Paper products such as books, documents, photographs and paintings may require special care. Same goes for electronic media such as CDs DVDs, hard drives and other computer equipment.