A few Questions Answered For You.
A: Before reporting your claim, make sure you have taken reasonable measures to dry the affected area. Document the damage to the exterior by walking around the property and marking the water levels on the walls. You should also keep note of any fallen trees or other damage to plant life, and of any flooding that is still present. Only upon determining the safety of the structure should you enter the building to begin gathering information. Note structural damage as well as damage to personal belongings. For this step it is recommended that you hire a professional restoration company to help expedite the process. Damage documentation will involve all affected areas of your property including the yard, bathrooms, basement, attic, roof, foundation, and damaged possessions. Where home renovation is concerned, look out for cracks in walls or the foundation, sagging floors around toilets, wet or stained ducts and vents, warping of wood, stains on walls or ceilings, damage to electrical cords and phone jacks, cracked or broken doors and windows, or anything still wet such as insulation and drywall. Also note the condition of the roof. Is it sagging or collapsed in certain areas? Note missing roof tiles, wet portions, bent or broken gutters, or damage to the chimney. Once the structural damage has all been accounted for, begin documenting damage to your belongings. Professional restoration personnel will start by assessing the damage to your furniture, appliances, carpets, upholstery, cabinets, dressers, paper products, computers, hard drives, cds, DVDs, and other electronics. Keep account of all valuables and their cost. Determine whether repair or replacement is necessary and make a list that includes pictures of everything. It's recommended, in the cases of flood or fire, that you take pictures of everything before disaster occurs, if at all possible. A professional restoration company will know exactly what to do and will often bill your insurance company directly. Your coverage depends on the type of policy you have and the cause of the damage.
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