In Alabama, severe weather is a fact of life. While the peak of tornado season is in the spring, the fall also brings increased tornado risk, and sudden thunderstorms can be just as devastating at any time of year. So what do you do if your property suffers storm damage?
The first thing you should do after a storm is make sure that you and your family are safe. Look for any downed power lines, standing water and overhead hazards like dangling tree limbs or pieces of roofing that could fall. If you smell gas, leave immediately. Turn the gas off at the meter if you can do so safely. If your home has sustained severe structural damage, you may need to make other plans for shelter while repairs are made. Once you’re safe, you’ll need to assess the damage that was done to your property.
Notify Your Insurance Company
- Contact your insurance company as soon as possible. You’ll need your agent’s information and your policy number. Best to store those items in a safe place and in your smartphone for quick access. You may need to be persistent as many people may also be calling and overwhelming the phones. Try email or contacting your agent through social media if you’re not having luck.
- Take photographs or videos of the damage before you do any cleanup.
- If you have to stay in a hotel or temporary housing, check to see if you can receive reimbursement for lodging and/or incidentals.
- Minimize any further damage by covering leaking roofs and broken windows, but don’t do any permanent repairs until you get the clearance from your insurance company. Save all your receipts for any temporary repairs.
- Remember damage from floods, sewage from backed up drains and other items may not be covered by standard homeowners’ policies. Check with your insurance agent for complete details before a storm hits to make sure you understand your coverage.
The Bottom Line
Most storm damage is beyond the average do-it-yourself project. A contractor can restore your home to its previous condition after a storm devastates it. They can also work directly with your insurance adjuster to help speed up repairs. But be mindful. Major storms sometimes bring individuals who want to make a quick buck by doing subpar repair work before they move onto the next homeowner. You can protect yourself and your money by making sure you hire a licensed and reputable contractor. Read our article, Tips & Tricks for Choosing a Contractor Who’s Right for You.
If you have questions or concerns about damage repair contact Mike at Allied Construction Services in Montgomery, Alabama by calling 334-281-3001. You can also email Mike here.