GENERAL CONDITION OF FLOODING:
Minimum requirements: See the attached. A street or sidewalk can be considered a property. Seepage and sewer backup is covered if there is a general condition of flooding in your area.
Mud flow is covered, but landslides are not. If the soil is like a milk shake it is mud flow. If like cake it is a landslide.
Collapse or subsidence of land on the shoreline from undermining during above cyclical tides is covered.
Policy Link:FLOOD DEFINATION A DP
MUDFLOW A DP
ACM Link: DEFINATION FLOOD A ACM
SEEPAGE AND HIGH WATER TABLE A ACM
DAMAGES UNRELATED TO FLOOD
If a fire or freeze up occurs during or after the flood contact your Agent with your other Business Insurance Company as damages would not be covered by the flood policy. The policy provides coverage “by or from flood waters” only. Example is if there is a short circuit that causes a fire it is not “by or from flood waters”. If the heating system freezes up and burst this also was not “by of from flood waters”.
Link: ICE AND DEBRIS COVERAGE A ACM
Diary of all the people you speak to including the date, name, phone number w/ext, and content of the call. This is a good time to start a file to store all your flood related documents.
EMERGENCY MECHANICAL REPAIRS :
– Contact a licensed electrician and/or other mechanical contractors to shut off gas lines and disconnect all electrical appliances that were affected , test circuits and make repairs.
– Start calling your various contractors to get on their list to repair or replace the mechanical items.
– Flood Insurance cannot pay to repair an item, then replace the item. Unless the cost to replace would be reduced to reflect reuse of item in the replacement
– First take photos of rooms and items damaged. Two shots in each room. One from a corner showing other two walls, and reverse corner of other walls. In each room also take photos of the major contents items damaged and close up shots of damage. Hold up a ruler on the flood line, and take a photo to show height of the water.
– One photo each of mechanical items damaged. Also jot down make/model/serial numbers
– Exterior damage of the damaged siding ect. If the A/C condenser, floor insulation or duct work is damaged also take photos.
The policy stipulates it is your responsibility to prevent (mitigate) against further damages.
If you or your family members perform the cleanup you will receive the Federal Minimum wage. Some adjusters will allow for clean up by the sq ft to benefit you.
Most people you have spoken to at this point have probably told you not to do anything until the Adjuster inspects the house. If it’s a big storm that could be weeks.
If destroyed, Wall to Wall carpet and pad should be removed and disposed of. Save a 2 ft square piece of different types to show the Adjuster.
DRYWALL AND INSULATION:
I have adjusted many claims where the drywall and insulation have been removed with no consequences. I always told policyholders to remove affected drywall and insulation. If water was less than 4ft remove to 4ft. On the other hand if water was higher than 4ft drywall can be removed to 8ft.
ITEMS NOT TO REMOVE:
It is best to leave doors, kitchen and bath cabinets in place until the adjuster inspects the home.
DO NOT DISPOSE OF:
Do not dispose of any appliances or mechanical items. If these items need to be replaced move the damaged items in the back yard or garage for the Adjuster to see. If moved outside make sure to cover items with a tarp.
Companies that will come to your house or business to remove carpet, drywall, insulation, then provide drying equipment to dry out your structure. Service master and ServPro are the two biggest franchises.
LARGE COMMERCIAL LOSS SERVICES:
If you have a large commercial claim here are a few restoration companies :
US Belfor USA: www.us.belfor.com/
US Paul Davis: www.pdrestoration.com
NY, NJ & CT Maxons : http://www.maxons.com/
Do not let them start up their drying equipment until the wall cover, carpet and insulation has been removed. Flood Insurance is not going to dry out items that will be replaced. Flood pays for fair and reasonable cost, not price gouging. Be careful.
When hiring a restoration company, you need to provide them this FEMA memo explaining emergency restoration guidance and limitations including Water extraction, Other equipment, sealers and preservatives, drying prior to building’s and HVAC restoration, Drying logs, Extraneous equipment charges, Overhead and Profit and Non covered items
W-13025a Dry out Guidance
3RD PARTY PAYMENTS:
Flood insurance also does not pay the emergency service company directly. If the work they perform is covered by the policy that portion of their estimate will be included in your claim.
CAUTIONS BASEMENTS OR ELEVATED BUILDINGS:
Be careful when they may be working in a basement or area below the lowest elevated floor in a Post Firm Elevated Building as the adjuster may not be able to include some cost for work performed. See above Caution paragraph. Also Building Guidance issues Basements and Elevated Buildings exclusions to learn more.
MORTGAGE COMPANIES & BANKS:
The Flood carriers are required to include the bank or mortgage companies name on your building settlement check, not the contents check since they have no interest.
Link: MORTGAGE CLAUSE A DP
Mold is excluded unless it was a result of your inability to mitigate against further damage. Example is that the community will not allow access to your property while utility, town and FEMA assess and make it safe to enter the area.
This could take 1-2 weeks. In this case the Adjuster has more leeway to cover Mold. Normally the Adjuster will always allow a Mildew side treatment and drying equipment.
Policy Link: MOLD EXCLUSION A DP
ACM Link Mold: MOLD EXCLUSION A ACM
WYO Link: MOLD COVERED A WYO-08070
POLLUTANT LIMITS AND EXCLUSIONS:
Pollutants can be in the form of toxic chemicals, sewage or oil that damage your home. There a $25,000.00 limit in the GP policy to clean the pollutants inside your building, but cannot exceed policy limits. The pollutant damage outside to your lawn or plants is not covered. The monitoring or testing is also excluded unless it is required by law.
Policy Link: POLLUTANTS DEFINATION A DP
Policy Link: POLLUTANTS EXCLUSION A DP
Policy Link: POLLUTANTS TESTING A DP
FEMA Memo Link:FEMA Memo Link:POLLUTANTS IN OIL WYO 10065A