Take quick action to alleviate water damage

Sometimes an ounce of prevention doesn’t feel like it’s worth anything – because accidents just happen. You installed a backup sump pump kit. You even re-graded your yard, trimmed all the trees, and keep your belongings off your basement floor. And you’ve taken the steps to prevent ice dams from causing water damage to your walls.

But water can be an unstoppable force. So you have damage to your home. Now what?

1. Pretend you’re a photographer and take lots of pictures. Chances are, a claims adjuster or restoration specialist won’t need them upon inspection, but it’s good to have evidence of where things started.

2. Find your homeowners insurance policy number. It will be on your policy’s declarations page.

3. Call your insurance agent or company as soon as possible. They’ll want to move quickly to file a claim if you’re insured for the water damage. Someone probably will be over to inspect your property within several days. If you’re a SECURA policyholder, you’ll receive a call within eight business hours of reporting the issue.

4. Start bailing and drying. Clean up as much of the water as possible, and dry things out with dehumidifiers and fans. Unfortunately, mold still can grow, but these steps still help.

* If you have standing water or damage near electrical sources, exercise extreme caution. Disconnect power if necessary.

5. Wait. This is the hardest part because you just want to feel whole again. If a major storm caused the harm to your home, chances are it impacted others in your area. That means contractors get a little backed up, and it could be weeks before they start repairs.

What’s covered?
There are numerous types of water damage, and not all of it’s covered. For example, most standard insurance policies don’t protect against floods.

Because every policy is different, you’ll want to read the language in yours carefully. Or contact your insurance agent or company to ask where you’re protected.