How To Prepare for Flood Recovery

rain from outside of windowA flooded home is an extremely hard and stressful event. There may have been a storm that resulted in local flooding or perhaps something like a mudslide. However, even if some of the contents and the home itself have been damaged, if you do things the right way, you may be able to restore your home and some of the belongings.

Being in a position where the home can be cleaned, dried out, and rebuilt will mean that you’ll be able to reoccupy it sooner than you might have thought.

First, though, it is important to be safe. Even if the rain has stopped or the water level has stopped rising or even receded, there are still hazards or dangers to be aware of. The foundations of the home can potentially be weakened or damaged, as well as ceilings or walls within the home. The home’s electrical system may be damaged. It’s even possible that bacteria and hidden floating objects in the water could hurt you or make you sick.

Flood Recovery

One of the first steps that you need for your home’s flood recovery is to protect yourself as well as your family and anyone else in the home, such as pets. The best ways to do this are:

  • Avoid entering the home if the floodwaters are high, such as taking over the first floor
  • There can be hazards and creatures brought into the home through floodwaters, so wear thick shoes and be alert if you reenter the home
  • Don’t consume anything that has come into contact with the floodwater, such as food or drink
  • Look out for any hazards, such as electrical sockets covered in water, broken glass, damaged gas lines, and potentially explosive materials

The next step is to look at protecting your property once it has been flooded.

  • Closely inspect the home, for example, looking for cracks in the home’s foundations.
  • Don’t pump all the water out at once. If there is wet ground, it can affect the floors, which could lead to floors buckling and walls collapsing.
  • Look out for cracks and peeling on walls, as there could be falling plaster.
  • Get in touch with your home insurance agent as soon as you can. Let them know where you are and how to get in contact with you if you had to vacate the home.
  • Along the same lines, take pictures of the damage for your insurance provider, and if you have any work done for repairs, keep the receipts

Dry Out Your Home

When a home is flooded there will be a lot of damage, as well as contaminants left behind, even if the waters have receded. If not dried out correctly, this can lead to mold growth. By thoroughly drying out your home, you will reduce these potential hazards.

Restore Your Utilities

Drying out a flooded home and trying to get it all back to normal will be much simpler when you have the use of your utilities, such as electricity, clean water, heat, and waste disposal. These should be inspected by a professional if there has been extensive damage or the flood was because of a storm, so get in contact with your utility companies to help.

Start the Clean Up

The clean-up process can now start when the home is back to a safer condition. Look to save any valuable documents, such as insurance documents, birth certificates and passports. It is important to remember to throw out any food that will have come into contact with the floodwater, including things like canned goods or items in a refrigerator.

Any area of the home that came into contact with the floodwater should be cleaned, as well as disinfected, to reduce the spread of germs or bacteria. If you’re not sure if something is clean or not, presume it isn’t! Be as safe as you can.

Rebuild and Flood Proof the Home

Unless your home has been damaged beyond repair, the next step will be to rebuild and repair the home, making sure that it is protected from flooding in the future. It is important to not rush the process and take work from the contractor offering the lowest price. Look for reputable companies to work with. Getting personal recommendations can be one of the best things to do. Just check to make sure they have insurance and the right training for the job.

Prepare for Future Flooding

There are areas in New Jersey that are more prone to flooding than others. So even if you think your home is flood proof, you can never be too sure. You need to make sure that you protect yourself and your home for the next potential flood. The way to do this is to have a home that is as flood proof as possible, perhaps repairing weaknesses that let flooding in before.

You should also protect yourself and your home with flood insurance. This means that if you are going to face a flood, and you live in an area where flooding could happen, then you will be covered for much of the damage and repairs. Having an inventory list of the items in your home should be part of this, so you know what could get potentially damaged and later reimbursed.

Get Your Flood Insurance Today

Anderson Insurance Agency is here to help you with your flood insurance so that your home and your belongings can be repaired or replaced in the event of a flood. Get in touch with one of our experienced team members today who can discuss your needs.