Types of Disaster Assistance Available to Flood Victims
Types of Disaster Assistance Available to Flood Victims
Flooding in Smith Village, OK, can severely damage your home. While flood damage is a major hassle for everyone, it can be particularly devastating if you do not have flood insurance. Fortunately, there are other sources of aid available.
If you are in a federally-declared disaster area and are uninsured or underinsured, you may be eligible for a FEMA grant through the Flood Mitigation Assistance Grant Program. These grants can be used for disaster expenses, including the following:
- property repairs
- temporary housing
- disaster-related medical and funeral expenses
If you are eligible for a grant, you will receive a letter detailing exactly what the funds can be used for. Additionally, the grant money may be distributed to reimburse you for disaster-related expenses that you have already paid for out-of-pocket. In this case, it is important to have photo or video evidence of the damage before you began making repairs.
If your flood insurance and any grant money are not enough to cover all of your expenses, you may qualify for a loan from the Small Business Association. Despite the name of the loan-provider, these low-interest loans are available to home owners and renters. Like grants, these funds are only to be used for disaster-related expenses and are only available to those in officially-declared disaster areas.
For individuals who need more immediate assistance or are not in a federally-declared disaster area, the Red Cross may be able to help. The Red Cross is a charitable organization that primarily helps with shelter, clothing, food and water.
Due to federal regulations, many people living in a flood plane will likely have flood insurance. However, some people may be uninsured or underinsured. In those cases, the federal government, the SBA and the Red Cross can all provide assistance. Whether your home-repair funds come from your insurance company or another source, a certified restoration company can help you get your home back to pre-flood condition.
What You Need To Know About Commercial Flood Insurance
Flooded entrance of a commercial building in Valley Brook, OK
Hurricanes and major rainstorms can cause severe flood damage to your Valley Brook, OK, commercial building. If you do not have the proper insurance coverage, you could be forced to use your business' money to pay for the repairs. Here are answers to some common questions about commercial flood insurance.
Who Needs Commercial Flood Coverage?
Just as a regular homeowners insurance policy does not usually include flood coverage, regular commercial insurance does not cover storm damage caused by flooding. If you are worried about the cost of flood cleanup, you need to purchase a separate flood policy. In fact, companies with property in high-risk flood areas must buy flood coverage for that building in order to obtain a mortgage from a federally regulated lender. Check out online flood maps to see which areas are most at risk.
What Is Covered by a Commercial Flood Policy?
A flood policy will cover flood damage caused by a variety of disasters, including storm surge, heavy rain and melting snow. Flood insurance also covers flooding that results from flooding problems, broken dams and blocked storm drains. The policy should cover the cost of repairs and help you pay for storm cleanup and restoration services.
However, not all water damage to your business is covered by a flood policy. Most policies do not include coverage for landscaping or vehicles. You also won't get reimbursement for loss of use or business interruption damages, unless you purchase excess coverage.
How Do I Get a Commercial Flood Policy?
Your private insurance provider may offer a flood policy. Otherwise, you can contact the National Flood Insurance Program, or NFIP. The policy typically goes into effect 30 days after you buy it. A typical policy includes $500,000 of coverage for a building structure and another $500,000 for the contents inside.
As natural disasters become more common throughout the country, you need to make sure your business is properly protected. This means purchasing a flood policy, especially if you are in a high-risk area.
Not All Water Damage Is the Same
Water damage in an Oklahoma City, OK
Not All Water Damage Is the Same
People sometimes think that the damages left behind by a broken pipe under the kitchen sink and the damage caused by flooding are basically the same. This isn't the case, however. In addition to questions about your insurance coverage, there are other differences you should factor in before you attempt to clean up any water:
- Water may be clean or carry contaminants
- Rising water may contaminate your living space
- Your family's safety may be at risk
- Different cleaning supplies may be necessary
One of the most important things to consider is the possibility of black water contamination.
Be Cautious About the Things You Can't See
When water backs up from your sewer system, floods up from your toilet, or seeps in from storm flooding, it may be category 3 water, also known as black water. This water may contain chemicals, pollutants, and feces. Coming into contact with this water can be problematic, even if you don't actually touch it. Additionally, the dark water often hides hazards, such as sharp objects or belongings that you might trip over.
Contact Professionals With the Right Equipment
The handling of contaminated water requires specialized treatments and protection. It isn't enough just to dry up the water in your home if contaminated water is part of the equation. For example, professional sewage cleanup services are important to help you and your family avoid coming into contact with feces and other unpleasant substances. Professionals typically wear specialized personal protective equipment to avoid the risks associated with working in or near the contaminated flooding.
Avoid Unnecessary Hazards
Remember that flooding comes in many forms. If you're not sure whether the water in your home is clean or not, contact water cleanup and remediation professionals. If there's any chance that the flooding in your Oklahoma City, OK, home could be black water, protect yourself, your family, and your home by turning the cleanup and treatment process over to professionals.
Extend the Life of Your Microwave
One of the most important tasks concerning your microwave is cleaning
Extend the Life of Your Microwave
Microwaves are considered a modern convenience that saves a lot of time in the kitchen, but they require maintenance just like the rest of your appliances. This miracle machine is overlooked in countless kitchens in Smith Village, OK. To avoid a smoke smell and the need to call a fire damage remediation company, follow some simple tips.
Keep It Clean
One of the most important tasks concerning your microwave is cleaning. Grease and food debris can be the most common cause of malfunction and fire. Areas such as the vent grill can accumulate a lot of buildup quickly, so be sure to add microwave hygiene to your rotating cleaning schedule. Some areas to concentrate on are:
- the grease filter, monthly
- inner walls and plate, after every use
- steam clean, bimonthly (heat a bowl of water and vinegar to loosen particles)
Use It Correctly
Be sure to read and follow all directions on any microwavable prepared foods that you heat up. Remember not to heat up plastic that will melt, paper or anything with tin foil. If you begin to notice a smoke smell, shut it off immediately so nothing catches fire. If you are unsure what time to set, heat your food item in small increments. It is also helpful to learn how to use the power settings.
Check the Parts
A microwave has various parts that may need replacing from time to time. A lot of over-the-range microwaves have ventilation filters. Charcoal filters work by absorbing pollutants- they usually fill up in about six months. To determine how often to replace a normal air filter, you should consult with your microwave's manual. If you notice the clock or interface acting up, you may need to call someone to replace the battery or keypad.
A microwave that is not at peak performance may begin to fill your home with a smoke smell, or cook your food unevenly. To help make it last as long as possible and keep your property safe, treat it with the love and care it deserves.
5 Tips for Removing Mold From Artwork
From flooding to improper storage, there are a variety of ways that mold can grab hold of paintings in your Valley Brook, OK, home. If you're an artist with a home studio or simply a collector, knowledge is power when it comes to mold cleaning.
Here Are Five Tips for Removing Mold From Your Art
1. Don't give it room to grow in the first place. Mold thrives in dark, moist areas. For this reason, avoid storing your canvasses in basements, attics, and other parts of your home prone to mold damage. To protect against flooding, keep your artwork at least 18 inches off the floor too.
2. Know what kind of media you have. If you're the artist, this should be easy. If you're a collector, however, identifying the type of paint or other media used in the affected art, as well as the type of surface and the finish applied to it, may be much more challenging. Still, it's a crucial mold remediation step because each medium requires different care.
3. Remove the frame and other coverings. Take the frame apart and perform mold cleaning with a gentle cleanser, being careful to test the solution on a small area first. If the artwork was wrapped in a storage cover, dispose of it and eliminate the threat of unseen mold.
4. Gently clean the front and back of the artwork. Spray the back of the piece with rubbing alcohol. This should kill active mold spores. Dab mold clusters on the front of the artwork with a cotton swab that's been dipped in rubbing alcohol. Again, test an inconspicuous area first.
Better still, enlist the help of a conservator. He or she will be able to identify the materials involved and the best way to safely clean them.
5. Dry the artwork in the sun for 48 to 72 hours. While it's generally a bad idea to expose artwork to direct sunlight, three days isn't enough time to do any damage.
Water doesn't have to spell disaster for your artwork. With careful mold cleaning, you can restore your paintings and other pieces of art to their former glory.
Prevent Secondary Water Damage to Your Business
Preventing secondary damage to a wooden baseboard in Smith Village, OK
Learn More About Secondary Water Damage
When a water-related disaster occurs within your Smith Village, OK, business, it is important to act fast. These disasters not only leave behind direct damage, such as broken pipes or water damage, but when not dealt with promptly and appropriately, it can lead to other aftereffects, such as black mold. Continue reading to learn more about this secondary impact.
What Is Primary Damage?
Primary damage refers to all the immediate effects of a flood, a leak or any other incident involving water. This includes wet equipment and decorations, as well as soaked walls and flooring. The water excess can compromise the stability of the building, damage your property and put your business at risk. Water removal and remediation can restore your location into a functional state.
What Is Secondary Damage?
Unfortunately, the potential issues of water damage are not always easily resolved. Even if you have cleared the water from the area, the remaining high humidity may continue to affect it. Between improper cleaning attempts and untreated or hidden areas, the evaporated water can condensate and initiate more damage. This impact manifests in multiple ways.
- Damp and disintegrating drywall
- Cracked, vulnerable sheetrock
- Warped or damaged flooring
- Presence and development of black mold
- Foul smell
This type of destruction does not always appear immediately and can take weeks to appear, which might be too late to prevent.
How Can This Damage Be Prevented?
This secondary damage is prevented through proper cleanup and remediation, as performed by a professional water damage service. These specialists have the right tools and equipment to combat the immediate effects of the initial incident. They will ensure every object and location in the area is properly ventilated, which can greatly reduce the humidity that creates this damage.
No matter the water emergency your commercial location in Smith Village, OK is dealing with, you might need to respond promptly. A timely and proper recovery process can stop potential issues such as drywall rot and black mold from taking place.
3 Reasons Not to Wait for an Adjuster After Your Home is Damaged in a Storm
The best thing to do after a storm is to document the damage
3 Reasons On Why Not To Wait For An Insurance Adjuster After Storm Damage
If you have experienced damage to your home after a storm in Oklahoma City, OK, and you are working on filing a flood insurance claim, you might think that the best thing to do is to wait for an adjuster to arrive. However, this might not be such a good idea. Here are just a few reasons why.
1. You Might Be Waiting for a While
During a large storm or a disaster, there will likely be many people who have suffered flood damage to their homes or buildings. Because of this, it might take a while before an adjuster is able to get to you. There will be quite a few people who are in the same situation that you are, so waiting might not be reasonable.
2. Water Damage Will Only Get Worse
While you are waiting for an adjuster to arrive, the water will continue to affect your house and belongings. If the water is not removed and the building cannot dry out, you will end up with a much larger problem to deal with. When it is exposed to water for long periods of time, wood can begin to warp and may end up rotting which can affect the structure of the building. Mold damage can occur quickly as well and may begin to spread within 24 hours.
3. It Can Affect Your Insurance Claim
In some cases, doing nothing to prevent further damage can affect the results of your flood insurance claim. You might not be approved for as much as you would have otherwise, and your claim might be denied altogether. Paying for repairs on your own can be expensive, so you want to avoid this if possible.
Instead of waiting for your flood insurance adjuster, the best thing to do after a storm is to document the damage. Take pictures and make lists of affected areas and items to provide as evidence. Once this has been done, a cleanup and restoration service can begin mitigation to prevent the damage from worsening while you wait to file your claim.
The Importance of Cleaning Smoke Odor After a Fire
The main concern after a commercial fire is often the building's structural damage from heat and flames. However, it's also important to consider potential secondary damage to electronics, furniture and personal items, as well as the long-lasting odor of soot and smoke. That's why smoke cleaning may be needed after a commercial fire, even after a fairly small one. When a fire happens in Oklahoma City, OK, there is a lot to think about, so calling in the experts for cleanup is a good way to ensure that nothing is overlooked.
Special Equipment Fights Smoke Odor
After a fire, the smell of smoke in the in the walls, furniture, ceiling and equipment can be pervasive. A quick cleaning won't do the trick. Industrial equipment is needed to repair the smoke damage. Remediation specialists use the following machines to eliminate indoor odors and prevent the growth of mold and mildew:
- Air filtration devices
- Thermal foggers
- Ozone machines
- Powerful fans
A thorough smoke cleaning requires specialized knowledge. A smoke mitigation technician will make sure the job is done correctly and help to guarantee that no residual odor remains in the building. The fire damage experts can take care of all of the damage associated with an unexpected fire, whether it is a bad odor caused by excess interior moisture or water damage due to firefighting efforts.
Advance Knowledge Combats Damage
A host of calamities can visit a place of business. These situations might include a large storm that results in flooding, or a lightning strike to an electrical supply that causes a fire. Sometimes equipment fails, or the pipes burst, and raw sewage is let loose into the building. Whenever this happens it's good to know that experts are on hand in Oklahoma City, OK, to help out. The professionals can clean it up "Like it never even happened." whether it is smoke cleaning or some other service.
How To Deduct Storm Losses From Your Taxes
Conference room storm damage in Valley Brook, OK
How To Deduct Storm Losses From Your Taxes
As a business owner in Valley Brook, OK, you are responsible for making sure your building is properly restored when it sustains storm damage. These repairs can be expensive, though, and your property insurance may not cover the whole cost. This may leave you with quite a bit to cover out of pocket. To help ease the burden, you may be able to deduct the amount you spend from your taxes, giving you a little bit of a break. There are a few steps you need to take in order to take advantage of this tax break.
1. Take Action Quickly
There are several benefits to calling storm restoration experts as soon as you know your building is damaged:
- Prevent further water damage
- Prevent secondary damage, such as mold
- Get an estimate for your insurance claim
While you will probably take pictures and make a list of items with storm damage on your own, having the storm cleanup estimate from the restoration company can provide extra backup to your claim.
2. File Your Insurance Claim
Before you can find out how much of the loss is tax deductible, you need to see how much your insurance policy covers. When you contact your agent, an adjuster will be sent to verify the damage and assess your claim. If you don't file a claim, you are not eligible to deduct any amount of the cost of the damages from your taxes.
3. Claim Your Deduction
Once you know the total that your insurance company is going to cover, you can deduct other repairs from your business taxes. If the federal government has declared a national emergency in your area due to the storm that did the damage, you may even be able to choose the year on which you claim the deduction to maximize your savings.
Storm damage is typically covered by your business insurance, but it doesn't always cover the full amount. Talk to your accountant to see if a tax deduction is possible.
What to Do if You Have a Leaking Sink
Leaking sink in Smith Village, OK
Follow These Steps To Prepare For Water Damage Repair
Discovering water somewhere you don’t want in your house can be a huge shock. Whether it’s flooding in the bathroom, kitchen or somewhere else, water in a home environment can lead to damage. The thought may cause some homeowners to panic. However, remain calm and follow these simple steps in order to reduce potential damage and prepare for water damage repair.
1. Shut Off the Water to Your House
You want to ensure that no further damage from flooding occurs, so you need to stop the water completely before doing anything else. Shutting off the main water to the house is the only way to guarantee that no more water comes from the sink leak, so be sure you know where in your house to go in order to do so.
2. Clean Up the Water You Can
While it may be tempting to do this first, if you don’t shut off the water, you’ll just have more water to clean before you even finish. Use a mop and rags to soak up the excess water, and also be sure to remove any electronics and bright colored objects that could stain, such as magazines.
3. Check Your Insurance
If you have homeowner’s insurance, you may be covered for any work that needs to be done, such as kitchen repair, in order to fix water damage. This can be highly beneficial financially and should be checked before making any calls out to repairmen.
4. Find a Restoration Service for Help
Water damage can lead to parts of the house not easily managed, so working with a restoration service is your best bet to ensuring that everything is taken care of properly. Not only can they repair any leaks to stop them, but they also can manage the replacements needed for any damaged wood, carpet, etc.
Being a homeowner in Smith Village, OK, can lead to stress if you find flooding from one of your sinks, but rest assured, if you handle things carefully, you’ll be able to get through the situation just fine.