Posts Tagged ‘flooding’
The same adjuster has treated three of my customers with similar circumstances the same within the last year, and it hasn’t been to the customer’s advantage. One customer had a very high deductable and not very much damage so he didn’t challenge the insurance company. Another customers’ policy was very recent and some of the damage happened before the policy was in force. The other customer I thought was going to hold the insurance company accountable.
Each of these customers had homeowners insurance policies with the same insurance company, and their policies actually had coverage for mold. Each of these customers had water damage in their home from what should have been a covered water damage event. Mold was also discovered on some of the wet materials in each home. Each had insurance for water damage and mold, but this adjuster denied all three claims using the following rational: The adjuster said “because there is mold present the current leak started much earlier, went undetected and allowed mold to grow.” Policies have language that says if there is long term seepage that is undiscovered, the damage is not covered.
Let me tell you more about the case in question. The homeowners came home one day and found their entire basement flooded. The water was from a leaky pipe in a wall. There was also some evidence (mold) that suggested that the leak may have started as a very small leak some time before. If this leak had been going on for awhile, it would have been very small because the homeowners never noticed any dampness or puddles on the floor in the area. We also found mold in the bottom of some other walls that were not near the leak. This mold could not have been from the current leak, the dampness could not have reached those walls undetected. So this suggests that some of the mold or maybe all of it was not related to the recent leak. And even if the leak started smaller earlier, there was clearly “an event” that took place, a sudden event that flooded their entire basement. This “event” should have been a “covered event” for insurance purposes. It was clearly an event and not long term seepage. This is where the adjuster really tried to stretch things. He said “because it is from the ‘same source’ as the alleged seepage the damage is not covered”. So to summarize: Even though there is little or no evidence that there was any long term seepage, the water damage from the pipe leak which should have been a covered event is not going to be covered because there is mold present, which they also should have coverage for.
I have been looking forward to going to small claims court in support of this customer as they sued their insurance company. We have coached this customer on what they needed to do. Only they can sue their insurance company, we cannot do it for them. We can coach them, advise them, show up and testify, and be an expert witness, but we cannot sue their insurance company for them. We have been waiting for a few months for this customer to get the paperwork filed with the court. They have procrastinated and just haven’t gotten it done. Just recently they took out a lone and paid our bill in full. I hope they still follow through and hold their insurance company accountable, but I fear that they may not which would allow this adjuster and his insurance company to get away with fraud once again.
We have seen nearly identical circumstances many times and the damage has always been covered by insurance. The damage adjusting process is not consistent, and is sometimes not fair or ethical. The best way to protect yourself is to hire a restoration company that is loyal to you and able and willing to be an advocate on your behalf.
I went out to a new flood in Alpine, Utah not to long ago. About 85% of the basement was flooded. turns out one of their kids happened to leave the hose on for a long time near a window well and it was not long before the window well was flooded enough to allow the water to begin gushing into the basement. It was one of those unexpected things people just can not really plan on. I would be giving my kids an iou when they turn 18 for all the turmoil. Unfortunitely this was not these peoples first flood and due to previous floods there was more damage to unseen places of the home no one could have really accounted for. Like mold. So maybe this flood came at a good time because during our mitigation process we were able to make them aware of a problem they would not have been able to see otherwise. And there youngest daughter was already suffering from breathing problems because of her lungs. So sometimes you have to see the cup half full.
When water damage occurs timing is crucial. A delay of even 48 hours can result in significant water damage compared to an immediate, timely response. This is why our personnel are on call 24 hour a day, 7 days a week. Your initial response is very important as it helps to prevent further damage. Once the flood begins to dissipate the task of water removal and water damage restoration starts immediately.
There are three categories of water damage…
Clean Water - Originate from a source that does not pose substantial harm to humans. Examples: tub or sink overflow, broken water supply lines, melting ice and snow.
Gray Water - Unsanitary water contains some degree of contamination that would cause sickness if consumed by humans. Examples: Aquariums, water beds, a dishwasher overflow, toilet backup with no feces present.
Black Water – Highly contaminated water that could cause death or serious illness if consumed by humans. Examples: sewage backup, ground surface water or rising water from streams or rivers that carry silt and organic matter.
Water Damage Inspections – We have over 17 years of experience with Water Damage Restoration and Clean up. Because of our experience and training we know what to look for and what we are looking at to help you get it cleaned up as quickly as possible. We are licensed, insured and certified in water damage, water damage restoration, water removal, flood damage, and sewer cleanup. We use a variety of instruments, tools and meters to diagnose and detect water damage including, moisture meter, moisture probe, non penetrating meter, penetrating meter, hammer probe,humidity sensors, and infrared cameras.
I’ve always shared with customers that although I’ve never had a flood in my own home, I can sympathize with them through their ordeal. Well that just changed recently. I am moving to Kaysville, found a great place, but before renting, I noticed that the rain gutters had been damaged. The owner confirmed that during the wind storm a few months ago, they were damaged, and she intended on replacing them. While the rain gutters were missing, rain had eaten away at the soil by the foundation, causing a depression in the soil. Once the rain gutters were fixed, the gutters directed the water right to the ground, but because the grading of the soil was reversed, the water was pooling up by the house and seeping in through the foundation. As I went to move in, the first person to carry a box in came back out saying ‘hey, you got a flood’. At first I thought they were just joking, since they knew where I worked. Alas, that was not the case, and the family room and bedroom on the west side of the house were soaked. Carpet, pad, walls, all had to be taken care of. Everything is dry as of yesterday, and repairs are soon to be underway as well. The owner wasn’t happy about it, obviously, but now that it’s fixed, it shouldn’t be a problem in the future. In addition to re-grading the soil, we also put down spout extensions on all of the rain gutters, to get the water further away from the foundation.
Recently, I got a phone call late at night from someone that was house-sitting while their brother was on his honeymoon. They had stopped by to check on the property, and what they found was pretty overwhelming. A sink had been left running on the upstairs level of the home. Needless to say, there was water everywhere! It affected most of the upstairs, the main level, and the unfinished basement. Luckily, they hadn’t moved all of their personal possessions into their new home, so most of the damage was structural, and nothing irreplaceable was lost. The water even missed the Christmas tree and all the presents underneath. The homeowners just got back into town today, and I was able to walk the job with them and show them everything that had been done. Luckily, they had good insurance, and all of the damages are being taken care of. It’s not the best time of year to have a loss like this (not that there is ever a good time!), but before long, they will be back to life as normal. A good lesson here is to always have someone check on your property when you are out of town; had this gone undetected until they returned from their honeymoon, the damages would have been much more extensive, and possibly could have led to mold growth and other, more complicated issues.
Insurance coverage that protects losses caused to property because of floods is called flood insurance. If your area is prone to floods, buying flood insurance would be a wise decision. Floods cause a great deal of water damage to millions of homes. Having a flood insurance means you are spared the damages that are caused by flooding.
You might not want to purchase because of the expense you would incur, but it is better to pay for the insurance than to spend even more rebuilding your home if it is damaged by floods. Remember, homeowner’s insurance policy will not pay for the damages caused by floods to your home; this is a misconception that some people have.
What is excess flood insurance?
Excess flood insurance can be purchased from an excess and surplus carrier or can also be purchased from certain flood insurance companies.
If the value of your real estate exceeds the amount provided by the National Flood Insurance Program, you will be safe if you get an excess flood insurance. If you have property located in a flood prone zone, you are eligible for excess flood insurance.
Other things you need to know
You can go for quality and low cost flood insurance coverage. A licensed insurance agent should be able to offer discounts in comparison to other coverage plans. If the flood insurance coverage is recognized and approved by a Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), it will imply that you are receiving flood coverage similar to everyone else but for a lesser cost.
This will cover your home for a wide range of flooding cases. The main reason for having flood insurance is when an area receives very heavy rainfall in a short period of time causing a flood and hampering your property. Other events that can cause flooding and call for flood insurance include water damage to the home due to melting snow, a swimming pool leak, clogged storm drains, and other such calamities.
The cost of the flood insurance will depend on the coverage plan that you have selected. You need to do your research for getting the coverage you require and at a low price. Arming yourself with flood insurance will save you from the aches and pains that could be caused by heavy losses incurred because of the ravages of a flood. So be safe and not sorry. Get a flood insurance coverage as soon as possible.
It May Be A Lot Easier Than You Think
Would you like to understand the FEMA flood vent regulations that apply to your home? And reduce your flood insurance premiums by a sizable amount?
This document makes the regulations easy to understand, points out the benefits of installing flood vents, and will help you decide what kind of vents to install.
Properly positioned and installed flood vents in your home’s foundation walls will not only help you protect your investment, they can help you save money. And, despite what you may have heard, the regulations governing their type and placement are easy to understand.
These regulations were stipulated by the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP), a program of the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA).
Requirements: the Basics
1 – Openings must be installed in foundation walls so that water can flow, unimpeded, in and out of the crawl space without damaging the walls’ integrity. The regulation is easy to remember: one square inch of opening in the foundation wall for every square foot of the area of your house. For example, a 2,000-square-foot crawl space would need 2,000 square inches of opening. The number of flood vents you need to install depends on the size and type of vent you buy. (More on that later.)
2 – Each enclosed area must have a minimum of two openings. If there are multiple enclosed areas within the foundation walls, each area must have at least two openings in its exterior walls.
3 – Flood vents must be below flood level to work. The bottom of each opening must be no more than 1 foot above whichever of these is higher: the interior or exterior grade immediately under the opening.
4 – Any screens, grates, grilles, fixed louvers, or other covers or devices you install must not block or hinder the automatic flow of flood waters into and out of the enclosed area.
Why Are Flood Vents Required?
The purpose of flood vents (also called “flood gates” or “flood ports”) is to reduce structural damage from flooding. These permanent openings accomplish this objective by allowing water to pass into or out of a building’s exterior foundation walls.
Why is that so important? In a flood situation, if the water pressure inside and outside your home can’t equalize rapidly enough, the windows and doors could blow out. In addition, this pressure can compromise the foundation and make your home unsafe to live in. Studies have shown that houses with proper openings survive a flood; homes without such vents collapse.
Who Needs Flood Vents?
According to its website, the NFIP “requires flood vents for residential basements, crawl spaces, garages, and other enclosed structures that are below the Base Flood Elevation (BFE) in Special Flood Hazard Areas.” BFE is the height of the base flood, usually in feet, in relation to the National Geodetic Vertical Datum of 1929 or other datum as specified.
If your home isn’t mortgaged, you aren’t required by FEMA/NFIP regulations to have flood insurance or flood vents. However, flood insurance is advisable to protect your investment. And foundation flood vents are still a wise move to ensure that flood waters do not structurally damage your home. How Cost Savings Add Up
Properly installed and situated flood vents can pay for themselves very quickly. They allow you to save in two ways. The annual reduction on your flood insurance premiums can be considerable. Secondly, should flood waters rise to your home, flood vents can reduce the risk of structural damage, which can be very costly to repair.
Which Type of Flood Vent Should You Install?
There are two types of flood vents on the market: non-engineered and engineered. Engineered vents have been designed in such a way that they provide a more efficient flood relief system, and thus fewer vents will need to be installed.
The opening size of the non-engineered flood vent is calculated by multiplying the width times the height of the opening. The opening size of the engineered flood vent is calculated using a mathematical formula that takes into account certain coefficients, net area and opening shapes. This formula calculation must be certified by a professional engineer. The main difference between the two types of flood vents is that fewer of the engineered flood vents are required to meet NFIP requirements. For example, a non-engineered 8″ x 16″ vent is rated at 128 square inches while an engineered 8″ x 16″ is rated at 200 square inches.
Other design and performance criteria for engineered openings are specified by the American Society of Civil Engineers:
1 – Engineered openings are to perform such that the difference between the exterior and interior water levels shall not exceed 1 foot during base flood conditions.
2 – Engineered openings are to be not less than 3 inches in any direction in the plane of the wall. This requirement applies to the hole in the wall, excluding any screen, grate, grille, louvers, or devices that may be placed in or over the opening. The 3-inch opening requirement applies to the hole in the wall; not the space between the grates, grilles or louvers.
In a Nutshell: Numbers to Remember
FEMA’s flood insurance requirements boil down to this:
1 – One square inch of opening in a foundation wall per square foot of house.
2 – Vents must be less than 12 inches above the ground.
3 – Two vents per enclosed area, on different exterior walls.
That’s it. Make sure you have the appropriate flood vents installed — or do it yourself — then call your flood insurance company to get a reduction in your premiums. You’ll also enjoy the peace of mind of knowing that you’re not only compliant, you’re safer. Prevent flood damage with flood vents.
When you need water damage cleanup the key is moisture control. Moisture control is important so you don’t get mold in your home. There are many things to think about when it comes to mold. If you had to perform water damage cleanup and you have mold in your home then you most likely didn’t get the home dry enough. When moisture still lingers in the home then mold will begin to grow. If you have mold then it needs to be cleaned up immediately and the moisture problem needs to be remedied.Water damage cleanup needs to happen within a day or two from the flooding. You should not put off the cleanup efforts because mold grows quickly.
The water damaged areas need to be cleaned up and completely dried. This may require a professional if you cannot get the areas dry. The areas cannot contain moisture as this is just a feeding ground for mold. If you have more than two feet of mold then you should have a professional perform the cleanup. This is because it is common for people to have severe allergic reactions to mold and you can also become very sick. You cannot just kill mold. The mold must be entirely removed. You also need to get to the source and cure what is causing the mold from growing. This might require a professional service. When you need water damage cleanup you need to be sure the job is done right. If you decide to clean the water damage yourself then you must be sure the structure is entirely dry and there is no moisture. Mold will grow if there is moisture in the structure anywhere in a home. This can be dangerous to all of the occupants of the home.
Cleaning up different kinds of damages in your house is very much necessary. Damages can be created due to a number of reasons. Water, fire and molds are some of the worst enemies of your house. They can damage each and every item present in your house.
At certain point if time it becomes quite difficult to prevent these kinds of damages but you can always act fast and prevent further damages. When the disaster strikes your house you might be clueless about what to do. Your brain might not work very fast at this point of time.
This is the reason why you should always be ready for such situations. There are certain companies which can help you come out of this situation and repair and renovate everything so that they are not destroyed by the disaster. Water damage cleanup Utah can help you save your house from the worst disasters.
These companies have grown in number but it is very important to find the company which provides the best service. Flood damage cleanup Utah is not possible by companies which do not have the essential equipments required for this purpose.
Salt Lake City is one of the most popular cities of this state. This city is the capital of the state as well as the largest city. This is one of the reasons why most of the popular companies are located in this city. Water damage cleanup Salt Lake City companies have branches in the leading cities of Utah.
It also offers services to various other cities of the state. Other than this, you will also find some popular names in water damage Ogden Utah. Other than water damage these companies also offer mold cleanup Utah.
Molds are usually small fungi that grow in places which are moist and dark. These molds are quite harmful and they are usually responsible for creating different kinds of diseases. Sometimes these diseases might even become quite fatal.
So you need to contact the best mold cleanup company to get the best results. It is always important to learn about the company well before choosing it. During the time of disaster it is not possible to search for the best company in the market.
This is the reason why you should prepare yourself before the disaster strikes your house and your property. Molds are usually the results of water damage which needs to be cleaned as soon as possible.
You should understand one thing that you do not have much time to waste in this case. Faster you act better for you and your property. Water damage cleanup Utah companies will charge certain amount of fees for the purpose. Different companies offer different quotes.
It is your duty to choose the right quote. You will find various customer testimonials on these websites of these companies. It is important to bring out the impure water from the house so that it does not create any kind of harm to you and your family.
Water Damage Repairs brought about by floods
Floods in Utah
Water damages are everywhere in your household. They may be caused by different factors but their effects are usually the same. They can be as big as property losses or as small as a water spot. But then again, these damages can be frustrating and tedious when they evolve into a bigger problem.
Floods are usually one of the causes of water damages. And the kinds of floods would entail the intensity of the damage that can be done. For instance, there are many types of floods that usually flood Utah: urban, flash and river flooding. And most of the floods in Utah are caused by snow melt and mountain runoff which can be considered disastrous.
When residing in a place like Utah, it is important to be aware of what you can do to be prepared. The first thing that you should prioritize is the strength of your own homes. Having a strong home would entail having a safer place to stay in times of these scary disasters. But if your house cannot really handle the strength of the catastrophe, it would be wise to evacuate and find a safer place.
There is worse condition in the home after result of the heavy flood. Flood water is the source of bacteria & mold growth in house & it is important you to start water damage repair procedure immediately to prevent damage to your home.
It is very important that you throw out the thing that are damaged by water; and ensure that make a list of all the damaged things for insurance. Getting rid of house hold & personal items can be a painful experience. It should be done to protect your health. If there is water damage to your walls & floors, you must repair the damage. It is best to call an expert to perform the cleanup & restore your home to a living condition once again.
There are a few tips to apply during a flood:
Never plug in electrics or try to turn your electricity off in standing water. Call a qualified technician.
Never try to do work without the proper knowledge as it can do more damage to the house.