As a homeowner, the words “Water Damage” probably make you break into a cold sweat. What may look like a small amount of damage can turn out to have significant structural repercussions. In recent years, the number of Insurance Claims due to damage from water has increased substantially. Now, more than ever, it is important to be alert to any potential damage water may cause to your home.
Should you discover water damage, here are the steps you should take immediately to limit the amount of harm and the severity of any insurance claims that you need to make.
Stop the Water Flow and Shut Off The Power
If the source of the water damage is still an active threat, the first step is to stop the flow of water if safe and feasible to do so. Typically, this will involve shutting off the main water valve. By stopping the flow of water, you prevent further damage from taking place. If there is standing water, you will also want to turn off the power to that area to prevent electrocution. Once you’ve taken care of the immediate threats, then you’re ready to look into an insurance claim.
Call Your Insurance Company or Agent
Time is of the essence when it comes to water damage. You only have so much time before mold sets in, and if the water is contaminated with bacteria or sewage then you could have a health hazard concern on your hands as well. It’s important to contact your insurance provider as soon as possible, so they can advise you on how to proceed properly and get the process started on any claims that you need to file.
Depending on the source of the water damage, it will fall under either Homeowners Insurance or Flood Insurance. You will need to submit any insurance claims accordingly. The two different types of policies are purchased separately from one another. Contact your insurance company or agent in advance if you have concerns about whether you have the proper coverage in the event of damage.
Remove Any Valuables
Before moving anything, it is a good idea to take photos of all the damage to provide to your insurance company. You’ll also want to document the damage, extract any valuables from the affected area, including items that are at risk of being damaged and items that have already sustained water damage, to prevent further destruction.
As public adjusters, we at PICC are here to make sure that you are getting a fair deal for your insurance claims. We work for you, not the insurance company, and we will go to bat for you to ensure that you get the settlement that you deserve. Even if you contact us after the insurance company has already paid or closed the claim, we can still reopen it. Call us at 305-956-3666 for a free consultation.