Insurance Claims: Natural Disaster
The strongest El Nino ever! Huge storm batters California with heavy rain, snow and possible mudslides.
Insurance claims associated with a natural disaster can be a bit more complicated than other home insurance claims. While your basic homeowner's insurance policy covers you for a variety of natural disasters and unexpected occurrences, there are others that are excluded.
A basic homeowners insurance covers:
- Fire or lightening
- Windstorm or hail
- Damage caused by an airplane/vehicle
- Vandalism/malicious mischief
- Damage caused by a falling object
- Weight of ice, snow or sleet
- Accidental overflow of water or steam or bulging, cracking or tearing from a fire sprinkler system, air conditioning system, heating system or appliance
- Freezing of air conditioning, heating, plumbing, appliance of automatic fire sprinkler system
- Accidental damage from artificially generated power surge
A basic homeowners insurance excludes:
- Other earth movement (sink holes, landslides, etc.)
- Other water damage (back ups or an overflow of your septic system or sump pump)
- Hurricanes (check your policy if you live in a hurricane prone area)
- Nuclear war or nuclear accident
In the instance of a natural disaster event, your entire community could be affected. When this happens, you may face additional stresses and complications not typically associated with other types of losses. We've compiled a few things every homeowner should know regarding natural disaster claims.
FEMA will only pay for temporary living expenses
If your home suffers damage from a FEMA declared disaster, claims still need to be made through your primary homeowner's insurance company. FEMA aid may be made available to help homeowners with temporary living expenses, but it is not meant to help individuals rebuild homes.
One disaster can be categorized as multiple events
If your home sustains damage from a natural disaster that occurs over several days, your insurance company may categorize these occurrences as multiple events and apply separate deductibles to each. Be aware when considering your funds for emergency situations.
Flood insurance has a 30 day waiting period
Flood insurance must be purchased separately AND has a 30 day waiting period. So, if that heavy storm system is headed your way, it's already too late.
Claims following a catastrophe take a long time
Following a large scale event, insurance companies are inundated with claims and processing may take a bit of time.
Following a catastrophe, insurance companies often contract temporary adjusters to help deal with the high volume of claims. This means that you may deal with a variety of individuals throughout your claims process. Keep track and document everything so that your claims process can be as smooth as possible, regardless of who you deal with.
You may be underinsured
Get at least two opinions on the replacement value of your home so that you can be sure that your policy will cover the cost of rebuilding should disaster strike.
Wildfires = Home fires
Insurance policies don't differentiate between a wildfire and a regular home fire. The difference, unfortunately, is that wildfires often result in a total loss.
SOURCES: insure.com, homesite.com
5 Things To Understand About Mold
Mold damage in a Redlands,CA commercial building
How to Keep Your Company Mold Free
Keeping mold growth out of company property can be an area of concern for many Redlands,CA, business owners. Fortunately, the more that’s understood about this fungus the better the precautions that can be taken. Here’s what you may want to know to keep your company mold free.
1. Where it Grows
Mold grows best in areas of high humidity. It is also likely to grow where water damage has occurred. This is why it’s important to clean up flooding as quickly as possible. In most cases mold tends to prefer to grow on organic materials such as drywall or carpeting.
2. How it Spreads
Mold releases spores which can latch on to damp material and begin new growth. In damp or humid conditions it can spread quickly.
3. What it Looks Like
In many cases the appearance of mold growth can vary. The texture ranges from splotchy and fuzzy to long and threadlike. Colors may vary between brown, orange, white, grey, black, and green. The appearance of the mold may be determined by the growth location and the age of the mold.
4. Why it Smells
Mold is a fungus meaning it gives off mycotoxins as it grows. A mycotoxin is a toxic organic compound than can lead to a number of issues if the mold is left uninhibited. These compounds are the reason for the musty smell.
5. What to Do
In the event you have mold, it’s best to get it cleaned up as quickly as possible. A mold remediation specialist may be able to help. It’s best to contain the moldy area to prevent spreading, and thoroughly clean and sanitize anywhere where the mold has appeared.
Understanding mold growth can be the first step to preventing its growth. Mold should be dealt with quickly whenever it’s found. Remember, if you have any questions, a professional may be able to help.
3 Ways FEMA Can Help After a Storm
Flooding caused mold damage to this home in Redlands Yucaipa,CA
Three General Type of Assistance That FEMA Provides
After a severe storm, hurricane, or flood, the Federal Emergency Management Agency may offer assistance to residents of Redlands Yucaipa, CA. There are three general types of assistance that FEMA can provide to homeowners affected by storm damage or flooding.
1. Financial Assistance
Homeowners affected by floods may qualify for the Individuals and Households Program if the president declares their region a federal disaster area. Repair and Replacement Assistance is a one-time payment to support damage mitigation, but is not sufficient to restore a property. Complete mitigation and restoration require coverage under the National Flood Insurance Program or a homeowners policy for other types of storms or disasters.
The NFIP does not cover additional expenses associated with disaster recovery. FEMA also cannot duplicate benefits for any losses covered by insurance. Homeowners have up to 12 months from the application date to submit insurance settlement records or file a claim for an insufficient settlement.
The Federal Emergency Management Agency also sends out inspectors and adjusters to assess the extent of damage caused by flooding. These experts can facilitate filing NFIP or homeowners insurance claims.
3. Temporary Shelters
Transitional Sheltering Assistance is available immediately after a disaster to reduce the cost of a hotel stay. Thereafter, Temporary Housing Assistance is issued for an initial period of one to three months. In order to qualify for extended assistance, residents must prove that they have spent any funding received in authorized ways. The maximum period for housing assistance is 18 months.
These are just a few ways that FEMA can help residents and homeowners who are affected by floods, storms, and other disasters. Many types of assistance and services fall under each of these broad categories. These measures are intended to supplement homeowners and NFIP coverage, and are not a replacement for insurance. Insurance coverage can offset the costs of residential damage restoration in Redlands Yucaipa, CA.
Key Information Every Tenant Should Know About Renters Insurance
Apartment fire in Mentone, CA
Every Tenant Should Purchase a Renter’s Insurance Policy
Renting a residence may be an ideal situation for many people in Mentone,CA. What many tenants may not realize, however, is that a landlord’s insurance policy only covers the rental property. The tenant’s personal possessions are typically only covered under a supplemental renters insurance policy. For example, the landlord’s insurance may cover fire damage restoration costs, but an uninsured tenant may have to pay out-of-pocket to replace belongings destroyed in an apartment fire.
For financial peace of mind, every tenant should purchase a renter’s insurance policy. Understanding key policy concepts can help you make the best decisions about your specific coverage.
1. Personal Property Protection
A key aspect of many policies is personal property protection. In the event of a fire, this coverage helps you replace damaged or destroyed possessions. This can be an extremely useful component of your policy because replacement costs can add up quickly.
2. Liability Coverage
Some leases may include a clause that requires the tenant to pay the landlord’s insurance deductible if the tenant’s actions cause damage. Liability coverage can help protect you financially if investigators determine you are responsible for igniting an apartment fire.
3. Temporary Living Expenses
If fire damage makes your apartment temporarily uninhabitable, renters insurance may cover the cost of temporary housing, sparing you additional out-of-pocket expenses.
4. Relatively Inexpensive
The cost of coverage varies depending on the insurance company and policy you choose. However, you may be able to find a policy that costs as little as $13 a month, a relatively inexpensive fee for enhanced financial security.
5. Review Policy Terms
It’s important to carefully review the terms of any renters insurance policy you are considering. Some policies may, for example, offer lower compensation limits, which may not provide adequate funding to replace expensive items such as televisions and computers.
An apartment fire can be a devastating and extremely destructive event. Every tenant should understand that their belongings are not protected under their landlord’s insurance policy. Because of this, purchasing renters insurance may be the best way to protect both your possessions and finances.
How To Avoid Space Heater Fires
Stay warm with your space heater through the cold, fall and winter in Mentone,CA
As a homeowner in Mentone,CA, the last thing you want to worry about during chilly seasons is a burned space heater. It can be hard to remember to carefully operate and maintain such a device when you are just focused on staying warm. Here are three safety tips that can help you be better prepared to keep the unit and your home free from fires.
1. Avoid Overheating
Do not plug multiple devices or an extension cord into the same outlet where the heater is plugged in. This could cause the devices, cords or outlet to overheat, creating a fire risk. It is a good idea to plug the unit into an otherwise empty power outlet to avoid a burned space heater.
2. Turn It Off
If you are not using your space heater, make sure to turn it off and unplug it. Consider doing this anytime you leave the room or go to sleep for the night. Pull the plug straight out of the socket and check it for any damage. If damage is found, dispose of the unit and purchase a new one.
3. Leave Ample Space
Leave a space of three or more feet around the heater to account for pets, children and combustible materials found in the room. It is also important to never use a space heater in a child’s room. Often, kids may not understand the fire danger involved and may not be able to properly inspect a unit for damage or other issues. This could potentially lead to a fire in your Mentone,CA, home.
Take these three safety tips seriously and try to remember them to have a greater chance of avoiding a burned space heater and the smoke cleanup that could result from it. Then you can focus on staying warm and cozy through the cold fall and winter months.
There Is a Leak Under the Kitchen Sink
Water damage due to pipe line break behind kitchen cabinets in a Redlands, CA home
If the water in your home stays where it belongs, it may be a homeowner’s best friend. When it is set free by a burst pipe or comes flooding in from the outdoors, it can be one of the homeowner’s worst enemies. Even the damage caused by a simple leak could be extensive, costly and a major inconvenience.
Check the Sink Enclosure
The pipes in the cabinet enclosure beneath a kitchen sink are a perfect example of a plumbing failure waiting to happen. In that cabinet, you will often find some combination of:
- Hot and cold water supply pipes for the faucet
- A hot water supply pipe for the dishwasher
- A hose for the sprayer
- A water supply pipe for a hot water dispenser
- Water supply for a filtered water dispenser
A leak under the sink could go unnoticed for days or even weeks. In that time, the damage could look like it was caused by significant flooding. Even if the leak is small, don’t be fooled into thinking that it can wait.
Prevent Additional Damage
The simplest way to prevent more damage is to shut off the water supply using the valves under the sink. If you are looking at a long wait for the plumber to arrive, you might be able to find other ways to capture the leaking water and reduce the inconvenience.
Call Your Insurance Company
If your insurance policy covers water damage, an adjuster may open a claim and evaluate the damage caused by the leak. By notifying the company of the leak, you can begin the process.
Proceed With Restoration
Whether your sink area has been damaged by significant flooding or a simple leak, your kitchen repair often requires the attention of water remediation specialists who can restore the area quickly and completely. You may find such specialists in Redlands,CA, who are prepared to quickly come in and deal with your problem.
Beyond Flooding: Understanding Different Types of Storm Damage
Cooling temperatures can lead to frozen pipes in Yucaipa,CA
From hurricanes to blinding blizzards, there are as many forms of potential storm damage as there are different types of storms. While most business owners anticipate damage from the standing water of flooding, the truth is storm damage can include
- Ice dams
- Wind impact
- Burst pipe damage
and more. Here are just a few of the more unique ways storms can cause damage to your Yucaipa,CA business.
Are you prepared?
Hail is a form of solid precipitation comprised of bits of ice. Hail stones can be as small as a pea or as big as a baseball and can come down with significant force. The result can be most pronounced on your roof, where hail can leave pock marks and even knock roofing granules away leaving dark spots. The former is unsightly, while the latter can lead to leaks and cracks that are costly to repair.
Sometimes damage a storm causes around your building can inadvertently affect your business. High winds during a storm can knock down tree limbs and in extreme instances, turn signs and mailboxes into projectiles. These can crash into windows or, in the case of limbs, onto your roof.
Some of the most unexpected forms of storm damage can come from ice and snow. Rapidly cooling temperatures can lead to frozen pipes, resulting in burst pipe damages and a disabled business. Ice can also wreak havoc on your drainage system, freezing in gutters and forming harmful ice dams. The weight of heavy snow, meanwhile, can be enough to damage or even destroy a roof.
Preparing your business for a storm means considering more than just flooding. Hail, wind and even ice can be formidable foes, causing burst pipes and more. Prepare by learning about all the risks and connecting with a seasoned storm restoration firm if the unthinkable has already happened.
My Home Has Flooded - How Do I Prevent Mold?
Flooding caused mold damage in a Yucaipa, CA home
If you have recently experienced flooding in your house after a Yucaipa, CA, storm, you may be worrying about mold. After all, most homeowners know that water damage can lead to other problems, including the appearance of fungus. Following these three tips will help you to be in a better position to prevent mold growth from becoming a problem.
1. Address Water Damage Quickly
Water damage after a flood can often lead to more problematic mold damage. Low levels of spores are not uncommon, but the kinds that can develop as a result of extensive moisture are cause for concern. A storm damage company can help you take care of any excessively wet areas and even prevent existing moldy spots from becoming a larger issue.
2. Turn off Air Conditioning
This may not be something you would naturally think of, but air conditioners are actually one of many sources that allow mold spores to spread through the air, especially if the equipment itself has become infected with moisture-related colonies. Simply turning the unit off as soon as you notice a water issue can stop mold growth before it starts.
3. Throw out Water Damaged Goods
It can be painful to throw away beloved objects and investment pieces, but if they are damaged beyond repair, you will do yourself a favor by disposing of them before they create a mold problem. The Yucaipa, CA, restoration specialists that help with your larger storm destruction matters should be able to help you with removal of this nature, as well.
Remember that mold growth is actually a natural process, and finding some in your home is normal. What you want to prevent is amounts that threaten your property’s structural stability or cause odors, and following the tips above will help you to avoid having to worry about such mold removal concerns in the future.
SERVPRO of South Redlands/Yucaipa Provides Power Washing and Pressure Cleaning Services
Cleaning a roof after a fire damage in Redlands, CA
Is your home or property in need of a good wash? Do you have unsightly staining or mold? We are here to help! Whether you have a large commercial property or a residential home, we have exactly the right treatment for you!
Being a family owned and operated business, we understand the importance of commitment and care. Our experience and trained technicians arrive at each and every job prepared to give you the best possible treatment available.
Our specialized treatments are formulated to clean almost any surface that you may need taken care of. We can clean pool aprons, tennis courts, vinyl, aluminum, stucco, EIFS, brick and stone siding, paver patios and walks, rust stains, algae streaks, roof treatments and so much more!
Give us a call at the office to speak with our staff about your needs.
Experience the innovative difference and prepare to be WOW-ed!
Water Damage in Redlands, CA
Water damage and flood damage is quite common in the communities of Redlands and Yucaipa in California (CA). There are numerous old buildings and houses in the area with old drainage, sewerage, and pipelines. Whenever they break down or leak, people end up with water in home or water in business. Also, the people of these two places sometimes face flood damage as well. However, there are a number of professional services in Redlands and Yucaipa in California (CA) with cost-effective mitigation or solutions for water damage and flood damage. They have been helping people with their quality services for a long while, and very recently they have given away some advice to the residents who might face water in home or water in business issues.
According to the experts, when the residents can realize that there is a water issue in the house, they shouldn't panic at all. The very first thing they should when they face such issues they should stop the water leakage. They can do so by turning off the water valve from the main water sources. After this, they should try to locate the leakage by looking at wet floors or walls. If possible, the residents can try to stop the leakage with DYI tools and waterproof tapes. However, they always suggest that people shouldn't try any major repairs on their own. This way, they might even make the situation worse.
The experts also advise the residents to open up all the doors and windows to allow enough air movement in the room. This will allow the room to dry up easily. Also, proper air movement in the room will prevent in odors as well. People may also remove any sensitive items i.e. books, electronic appliances from the room which are effected with water. In such time, people should stay away from electronic appliances to avoid any kind of accidents. If possible, the house and office should be evacuated so avoid any personal injury or accident. There should be some regular drills on this as well.
If the residents are ready, they should also allow the water to drain out. Opening up the doors will allow the water to go out. They can also wipe up water from the furniture as well. If they can't move the furniture, they can put wooden planks under the furniture. They may also use a pump motor for water cleanup. If there is an AC, they can also turn it on with the highest drying setting. This will accelerate the drying process in the room.
They should also call the water cleanup and drying mitigation professionals in Redlands and Yucaipa in California (CA) without making any delay. It is always a good idea to keep their number in nearby so that they can be called right away in case of any emergency. They can also found through the local directory as well or simply call the emergency helpline. According to them, these tips will come in really handy for the local people when they are affected by any kind of water issues in their home or office. Visit http://www.SERVPROsouthredlandsyucaipa.com for more information on water loss.