Don’t Overlook These Important Hurricane Damage Markers!
The official hurricane season has wrapped up, but that doesn’t mean that the damage caused by previous storms hasn’t continued to wreak havoc on your property. Hopefully, you have already documented your property before it’s been damaged, but even if you haven’t yet, it’s important to keep monitoring your property for damages to get the maximum payout for your claim. There are some common specific damages to look out for after a hurricane.
Short-term and Immediate Damages
Some damages are very obvious after a hurricane and need immediate attention. If there is a fire or exposed power lines, your first reaction should be to get to safety and call emergency services. Even if you are not in physical danger, there are some damages that will require immediate attention.
- Pipe Breaks – If you can, turn off your water supply to prevent additional damage. Take note if the damaged pipes are managed by your municipality, as they may be responsible for the damage caused to your property.
- Flooding – Flooding may take days or weeks to clear, and even longer to clean up. The water level may not have risen enough to reach the walls of your property (and leave obvious signs of damage), but may have left structural damage below. Examine the foundation, and if safe, the crawlspace to make sure the home is structurally sound.
- Physical damage – Trees and debris are dangerous during a hurricane and frequently cause substantial damage. The damage might be obvious, such as a broken window or a tree may fall onto your property, but some damages may be more subtle and you may not notice them right away.
One of the most commonly overlooked issues is roof damage. Unless the damage is severe, it can go months, even years, without notice! Even a small leak can wreak havoc over a long period of time, leading to dozens of other issues. The gentle tapping sound above you while it rains might be more than just raindrops on your roof. Be sure to climb up into the attic with a flashlight and a camera to take a peek at any water stains, warped wood, or actively wet spots. A major obvious indicator of a roof leak includes discolored drywall or swollen and falling patches of popcorn-textured ceilings. On the exterior of your property, you may notice warped shingles or mossy, bloated siding, which indicates that water is leaking into the walls.
A dehumidifier or two is a solid investment for humid weather, but is also an excellent way to prevent the development of mold after water damage. Mold is a costly and sometimes dangerous outcome of water damage. You may find visual indicators of mold such as the telltale black splotches on walls, ceilings, and grout… but you may also notice changes to your health! Shortness of breath, allergy symptoms, headaches, fatigue, and dizziness are some symptoms to look out for after prolonged exposure to mold spores.
Don’t risk your health by waiting. After any hurricane emergency, your very next call should be HLA! If you have questions about what to do after a hurricane in Florida, contact Honest Lion Adjusting. We can explain what insurers are looking for in submitted claims so you can ensure that you get the highest possible payout. For more information, please call 844-LION-100.