Rebuilding After Hurricane Sandy
Hurricane Sandy, the largest Atlantic storm in history, has affected millions of people along the northeast coast of the United States. Many have lost their homes and possessions, and a large number of those whose homes are still intact have been without electrical service since the hurricane hit. A severe gas shortage prevents many employees from getting to work even if their businesses are still operating. In addition, as the winter season and cold weather approaches, another storm is predicted that will further compound the human suffering and property damage.
For the fortunate people who still have homes, returning can be bittersweet. Flood and wind damage need to be accessed and repaired before it is safe to resume living in the homes. Many homes may have structural damage to the foundations that present crucial safety issues. Power lines and trees may still be down and damaged trees that are still standing create safety hazards. The moisture from flooding creates black mold if everything is not thoroughly cleaned and sanitized. If there is no electrical power, it is almost impossible to live in the homes until the power is restored and the necessary repairs and cleaning are completed.
Insurance Claims Should Be Filed Immediately
In situations like Hurricane Sandy, it is best to file insurance claims early. With the volumes of claims being submitted to the insurance companies, it will take some time to receive reimbursement. Thus, it is best to get the claim started while the evidence is still fresh. This will ensure you receive the funds you need. Ample documentation is required to receive prompt payment from the insurance company.
Beware of Rogue Vendors
Unfortunately, rogue vendors prey on unsuspecting victims of natural disasters. Hurricane Sandy is not different. Rogue vendors may offer to help you restore your home. The problem is that they are not licensed, bonded or insured. These people may or may not provide the type of service that will restore your home to its original luster. If this is the case, you will spend money
Preparing for the Future
Once the initial emergency has passed, people who have returned home need to think about preparing for the future. It is good to have emergency kits that can be located quickly and have the necessary supplies to be used in a disaster situation. Flashlights, extra batteries, water, non-perishable food and blankets are some of the items that need to be included. It is good to have money that can quickly be accessed as well. More items can be added to provide for specific needs.
A great resource for emergency planning is your insurance company. They will assist you in determining the proper liability coverage and advise you on procedures to safeguard your family and your possessions. A natural disaster cannot be avoided, but preplanning can help you survive the after effects.
This article includes information regarding damage control immediately following Hurricane Sandy. Erik Braunitzer is a writer for Douglas Elliman, brokers for NYC, Long Island and Hamptons Real Estate.