Florida’s climate is a humid subtropical, meaning they experience hot, humid summers, mild winters, and are susceptible to tropical storms, plus more. Surrounded by water on three sides, it creates the perfect place for severe thunderstorms, heavy rainfall, cyclones, hurricanes, and other tropical storms. So what do you do if a severe storm rolls through Central Florida and you sustain damage to your home? We have a few steps that you should take starting from the second the storm passes, to finally getting your damage repaired.
Step 1: Safety First
After a major storm, you first want to make sure you are safe in your home. Look for any standing water, broken windows, exposed wires, dangerous debris, etc. Get yourself and your family to safety always. After a hurricane, it’s important to stay out of floodwaters, and don’t use any electrical devices that are in standing water. Cut your breaker to your home and wait for an electrician.
If You Lose Power
Make sure to save any food or drinks from the refrigerator if your power is out. Collect flashlights with extra batteries in case of any power outages. Candles can work as well, but be mindful of any fire hazards.
If You Have Broken Windows
Safely clean up any glass that has blown into your home with a vacuum or broom and dustpan. Do not pick it up with your bare hands. Hang a tarp over any open windows with exposed broken glass.
Downed Trees or Loose Debris
If you can safely do so, pick up any debris that has blown into your house or yard. If a downed tree has damaged your home or roof, leave it to the professionals, but ensure there are no downed power lines on your house or near the property.
Step 2: Help Others if You are Able
Check-in on your neighbors after a major storm. If you’ve lost power, chances are it’s widespread to your neighbors as well. Make sure everyone is safe and has enough food and water to last until power is restored. If it is safe to do so, clear roadways of any large debris or tree branches that can obstruct a safe path for people and emergency vehicles.
Step 3: Assess the Damage to Your Home’s Exterior
You can quickly assess some damage to your roof just by walking around the property and taking a visual look at the gutters, downspouts, and the shingles. You should easily be able to notice any apparent damage such as lifting shingles, missing shingles, or large debris on the roof. If you can’t see anything from the ground, it doesn’t mean you didn’t sustain damage, but you should be able to tell if you need a better look from a professional.
Step 4: Assess the Damage to Your Home’s Interior
Look for any dark spots on the ceiling of your upper floor that could indicate roof damage and rainwater got through into your attic. Also, check for any water damage in the basement, any visible structural damage, and any damage to windows or window wells. These can be signs of more significant issues with your roof or your foundation.
Step 5: Contact Your Insurance Company
Now that you’ve done your brief assessment, it’s time to call your insurance company. As you did your initial walk-through, it’s important to note and photograph any damage you see as soon after the storm as possible. This will come in handy when you file your claim with your insurance company. They will walk you through the steps of filing your claim, collect the damage report, and get to work.
Step 6: Get a Damage Assessment
The insurance company will now send an insurance appraiser to your property to view the damage and do an assessment. This will be used to determine how much they may cover for damages and use it to submit your claim. It is also a good idea to get your own damage estimate from a professional contractor. They can compare what the insurance company estimated vs. their own, and you might get a better idea of what coverage you can get.
Step 7: Sort Out Financing and Payment
After you have the claim solidified, you can get ready to find a contractor to repair your home. Some contractors offer financing, which, if your insurance claim doesn’t cover the full cost, you may want to have. Severe storms can bring a slew of critical repairs that need to be addressed quickly to keep you safe. Find yourself a contractor that will work directly with your insurance company on your behalf to sort out the repair coverage and payments.
Step 8: Complete Repairs
Now you can get your roof damage, wind damage, or water damage repaired quickly and correctly. Secured Roofing & Restoration is well versed in storm damage repair, and we know that it’s important to not only repair quickly but ensure your home is left even better than we left it.
For a FREE estimate, give us a call at 407-986-ROOF right away!
Frequently Asked Questions
What should I do if a tree falls on my home?
If a tree falls on your home, do not try to remove it! It is very possible for you or someone you love to be severely hurt in the process. Wait for the things to clear out, call a professional, and get in touch with insurance who will be able to help cover repairs.
How can I tell if my home’s exterior was damaged by a storm?
Oftentimes severe storm damage is blatantly obvious. Tearing, cracking, and puncturing of shingles or siding are sure signs of damage. However, not all damage is as obvious so we recommend having your roof inspected thoroughly after any heavy storm.
Will insurance cover the storm damage to my home?
Whether or not insurance will cover the storm damage to your home depends a lot on your location, the type of damage, and the specific insurance you have. We do our best to help our customers navigate the complicated insurance process, and keep the financial burden to a minimum.