- Severe storms can cause significant damage to homes, resulting in economic loss and a struggle to find a safe shelter.
- Assessing the damage is crucial to determine the repairs needed and if the insurance needs to be claimed.
- Consult the insurance company to document the damages and receive compensation.
- Start the recovery process by finding experienced contractors and obtaining necessary permits.
Storms can cause extensive damage to people’s homes, leaving them without shelter and needing urgent solutions. According to the National Severe Storms Laboratory, strong winds associated with thunderstorms and tornadoes can reach over 200 miles per hour, quickly destroying buildings, trees, and power lines.
The United States experienced over 1,500 tornadoes in 2020, resulting in over $5.5 billion in economic losses. Additionally, severe thunderstorms caused over $20 billion in insured losses, with hail damage alone accounting for over half of the total losses.
Unfortunately, your home might be one of the many recently suffered from storm damage. It can be a traumatic event that leaves you feeling overwhelmed and vulnerable, but there are a few steps you can take to recover from the storm. Here are a few of them.
Assess the Damage
After a severe storm, assessing the damage to your home is an essential step in the recovery process. Doing so can help you determine the extent of the damage and what needs to be repaired or replaced. Additionally, it can help you decide whether you need to file an insurance claim and how much compensation you could receive.
Here are the steps you can take to assess storm damage to your home:
Check for structural damage
The first step is to inspect the overall structure of your home. Check for any cracks or gaps in the foundation or walls and any bent or broken roof trusses. Look for signs that the house has shifted, such as uneven floors or doors that won’t close properly. Call a licensed contractor to assess the situation if you suspect structural damage.
Evaluate water damage
Water damage is one of the most significant risks associated with severe storms, as it can lead to mold and other health hazards. Begin by checking the ceilings, walls, and floors for water stains or discoloration. Open windows and doors to air out the house and prevent mold growth. You may also need to use a dehumidifier to extract excess moisture from the air.
Check for electrical damage
Inspect your home’s electrical system to ensure it is still safe. Look for frayed wires or sparks, and check your fuse box for blown fuses or tripped breakers. If you notice any damage, turn off the power to your home and call an electrician to make repairs.
Evaluate roof damage
Finally, check your roof for any signs of damage, such as missing shingles, dents, or cracks. Call a professional roofing company to assess the situation and make necessary repairs if you notice any damage. Not addressing roof damage can lead to leaks and structural issues in the future.
Documenting the damages will help you identify the necessary repairs and replacements. Having this information to submit a successful insurance claim is also essential.
Consult Your Insurance Company
Claiming insurance is crucial when it comes to recovering from storm damage. It can make all the difference between a quick resolution and prolonged distress. Insurance coverage can provide financial support to help cover the costs associated with repairing or rebuilding your home after a storm. It can help you get your life back on track immediately.
The insurance claim process typically requires documentation of the damages incurred, but this step is crucial to ensure that you receive the proper compensation. However, it is essential to note that not all types of damage will be covered by insurance policies. For instance, flood damages usually require a separate policy. Therefore, you must check your coverage or talk to your insurance provider to ensure you know what is or is not covered.
In cases of severe storm damage, insurance claims can be complex and timely. It takes time for insurance providers to assess the claims made, and they may need to settle claims from many people at once. Nonetheless, having no insurance coverage means paying for everything yourself, which can be significantly more costly.
Start Recovery Process
Once you have received compensation from your insurance, it is time to repair or replace your damaged property. It can be daunting, and finding contractors available for the job may take some time. Be sure to research and schedule a meeting with a contractor with experience in storm damage repair services.
You can also find companies that offer comprehensive repair services, such as roofing and electrical repairs. Finding contractors that provide multiple services can help speed up the process of recovery after a storm.
Finally, ensure all necessary permits are obtained before starting any construction or repair work on your home. This is essential to ensure the safety of those living in the house and ensures compliance with local building codes.
Storm damage can be devastating, but knowing what steps to take in recovering from it makes the process easier and faster. Assess the damage, consult your insurance company, and start recovery as soon as possible to get back into your home quickly and safely. With these tips, you’ll be one step closer to rebuilding your home following a storm.