There are hundreds of different sources of water damage San Diego CA which can flood your home, causing catastrophic damage. A copper plumbing pipe leaks in the attic. An air conditioning condenser drain clogs and overflows. Your condo neighbor’s 50 gallon water heater cracks open in the middle of the night in the unit above you. A child’s bathtub is turned on to fill and forgotten. A toilet overflows – all day long.The worst of these often times originate from an attic or second story, causing a top-down damage pattern designated in the industry as a “Class 3” water loss. Any type of water damage should be taken seriously and inspected by a certified water damage technician, however, Class 3 floods especially require highly specialized attention to ensure that no trace of moisture is left unattended – leading to a dangerous mold problem. The initial reaction from homeowners upon the discovery of waterfalls cascading out of their ceiling is usually a frantic phone call to one of two entities: an insurance claim center, or the first flashy ad in the Yellow Pages from a flood company which promises a response time of “30 minutes or less – guaranteed!” As difficult as it may be to remain calm in such a situation, taking a few extra minutes to research your options in order to make the right call may save you an even bigger headache down the road.
The very first step in any major water damage occurrence is to locate and cease the source of water. This may be as easy and turning the tub handle, or it may require shutting off the main water supply to the house. Once the source has stopped, the very next phone call should be to a certified, professional, and highly reputable water damage restoration company. Resist the allure of implausibly fast response time claims, especially if you live in a metro area. The most common factor in a company’s ability to respond immediately at any time is usually due to a low volume of work, or a dispatch structure that consists of a single designated on-call technician who works from home with very limited resources. A “crew” who can arrive within 30 minutes of your phone call is often under-resourced and ill-prepared to handle a large flood properly. Keep in mind that damage of this severity is not reversed overnight. It may be weeks before your home is fully dried out and repaired back to normal, which emphasizes the importance in taking time to research local companies to find the best available to you before hiring someone with whom you may end up being stuck with for an extended time. Most legitimate water damage companies should be able to respond within an hour – a more than reasonable time frame to begin mitigation of the water damage.
The next phone call, but by all means not your first, should be to your insurance claims center to begin the insurance claim process. In the instances of minor water damage, it is best to have the damage assessed first by a certified technician to determine if the amount of damage exceeds your deductible, thereby making it worthwhile to file a claim. Major floods, including most Class 3 scenarios, usually cause thousands of dollars in damage and almost always justify an insurance claim. Once a claim is filed, if you do not already have a restoration contractor or water damage mitigation company hired or en route, your claims adjuster will usually assign you to a “preferred” vendor from the carrier’s pool of providers. Your adjuster will read you a script outlining the benefits of using one of their preferred vendors, but the reality is that these companies are generally on this list for the corporate-level discounts they offer the insurance carrier, and not due to customer-level reputation or performance. At the end of the day, these companies work for the insurance company, and may not have your best interests in mind. For what may be an extended relationship, you want a company working on your behalf for your best interest to ensure the utmost in cleanliness, thoroughness, and customer service. Even if the vendor dispatched to you by your insurance adjuster is satisfactory, wouldn’t you rather make your own decision when it comes to strangers working in your home?
Remember – it is state law that you are allowed to choose who works in your home – not your insurance carrier!
Most professional, water damage service providers (excluding some “30 minutes or less!” outfits) are equipped to work with your insurance adjuster in supplying documentation and invoices in an insurance-friendly format. The best way to find a quality restoration provider is usually through online service review and watchdog sites, such as Angie’s List, BBB, Yelp, and Google Places. Look for several testimonials of customer service and check multiple web-sites to gauge reputation. A few minutes of research may make a world of difference in helping you find a quality, well-established, local company who can make the best of a stressful situation through friendly crews, clean work, and excellent customer service communication. Representing San Diego County, Gold Coast Flood Restorations is the area’s highest ranked provider of water damage and mold remediation services. A family-owned and operated business serving homeowners and property managers for over 25 years, their single-location, non-franchised operation and customer service-oriented philosophy translates directly into a positive experience for the customer – especially in stressful situations. With a stellar reputation in the local community, you can rest assured that they will work with your insurance carrier on your behalf in quickly and thoroughly assessing and mitigating any level of water damage to your home. The next time water damage strikes your home – make the right call – Gold Coast Flood Restorations (619) 449-9611. But don’t take their word for it; check them out at Angieslist.com – the results speak for themselves!