There are many things that can ruin a day really fast, but there is nothing like a flood to top the list. I guess it’s because of the multitude of things that are going on at ounce. You have to try to salvage your belongings, personal items, keepsakes, etc. You have to stop the water from doing more damage, all the while asking yourself how to do this. What to save and what to let go because of the time constraint. Who to call, do I need a professional or will you call your local carpet cleaning company? These are just a few questions going on when someone’s dealing with a flood. The last thing you need is a company that has no experience, entering your home or office and taking charge of what could affect a great deal of your most valuable thing you’ve ever purchased in your life, your home. Let’s discuss some warning signs to watch out for and what to expect from a professional company.
First things first, how did they address the emergency during your initial phone call? Where they vague in their response to your questions? Did their answers make sense? When they showed up at your door, where they in uniform, clean and professional? What did their vehicle look like? Was it dirty, unmarked, in disarray? What about their equipment coming into your home, was it clean, clearly marked? Or was it dirty and disgusting looking. When you see their equipment, ask yourself if you would want this in your home. Please look at the pictures below closely. These pieces of equipment were removed from a water damage emergency we took over because of the gross miss-management of an in-experienced restoration company. They are disgustingly dirty, and a poor representation of what one should expect during an emergency. In the picture above, you can see staples on the front of one of the air mover; this is due to them stapling carpet directly to the machine. They could have bought a machine with a clip to hold the carpet in place or purchased clips, then attached them if they wanted. The fact that they did not tells me this company (we took care as to not show their name) cares little about their equipment or the effect on the homeowner’s property. Would you want these machines in your home?
When you call a restorer, the first thing to do is respond ASAP, when they arrive they will investigate everything, including areas that would seem otherwise untouched by the flood. This overstep is to document what is wet, and what is dry. No guess work is allowed here.
They will offer you choices if available to ease the process of drying you home out. A conscientious restorer will always take into consideration the homeowners circumstances at the time. For example, will you be able to stay at home or should you leave during the dry out? Is it even possible? How can we make this so you can stay home with the least amount of disruption? A seasoned restorer will know what is allowed giving the type of water damage, the length of time the water has been left unchecked, and all the other items that complicate flood losses.
So what should you do to prevent calling the wrong company in the first place? Don’t wait for a water damage to happen before you find the right company. Call around, ask your neighbors for recommendations, search reviews online. Just like calling around for insurance every year, you should call around until you find a reputable, qualified company to represent you, your home and belongings in a time of emergency. Having their phone number, and info checked and ready to go will save you a lot of headaches.