How to reduce water damage in flooded homes
As the flood waters subside and reveal the damage from the inundation we move into the next phase - the clean up and recovery.
The stories of community spirit are emerging as our wonderful city shows why it is such a great place to live and do business.
Image from on site at our current build underway in Railway Estate. The slab was built to the Q100 level to withstand a one in 100 year flood.
The rainfall and resulting flood has been unprecedented and it's left many wondering what to do next.
Martin and our team have been contacted by many of those affected asking what to do to address their damaged properties.
The first crucial advice is to immediately contact your insurer to lodge a claim. They will likely send an assessor when possible. If your house is inhabitable, you may be eligible for temporary accommodation under your policy, but again ask your insurer.
Here is some additional practical advice direct from Martin on how to reduce the damage to your home - IT IS IMPORTANT TO CHECK WITH YOUR INSURANCE COMPANY FIRST BEFORE TAKING ANY ACTION:
Good Insurance companies will work with you, and you should look to do the same with them. There are things you can do now, that I believe will assist in minimising the repair damage.
For those who have had water through, after taking numerous photos and videos of damage, AND AFTER CHECKING THIS WITH YOUR INSURER FIRST I would do the following:
- While the mud and tiles are all still wet in the house, hose, squidgy, wash out all the mud and silt that is sitting on tiles, and clean as much as possible now. (If there is a chance to save the tiles, then you should) While there is a chance the tiles may become de-laminated and ‘drummy’ from being submerged in water for a long duration, by using a high quality glue, and ensuring you get them clean and dry asap, there is a good chance they will be saved and no long term damage will be done. Either way, you want to clean the floors now while everything is wet anyway.
- Pull up and remove carpet and underlay (keep a sample for future reference)
- Remove skirting boards throughout the home as the first step to getting air into the walls and framework
- Depending on how much water you have had through your home, will determine how much plasterboard to remove. But the main thing here is to expose the wet ‘bottom plate’ of timber framing as a minimum by cutting approx.. 50mm of plasterboard above the floor.
I would be surprised if any insurance company would not want you to do this, as the main aim right now is to clean and dry out the home as much as possible.
Martin Locke Homes will be focusing first on assisting our current and past clients and will also be making our team available to complete rectification work as part of insurance claims for the wider community, should we have the capacity to do so.
Early indications are that assessors will be extremely busy, for those who we are working with, I have offered to work together with the assessor at the time of inspection. I believe this will save everyone time and ensure both the Builder and the Assessor agree on what is required to repair the home.
When seeking quotes for your insurance work, we recommend checking the provider is a certified professional individual or business and that they are QBCC registered. Personally, I believe you should do all you can to ask your insurance companies to use local trades and suppliers who share a sense of community. Also try and use the same builder who built your home, especially if it is still under warranty with that builder.