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Understanding Your Commercial Storm Insurance

10/26/2020 (Permalink)

Things You Should Know When Choosing Your Policy

A storm can strike anytime in Phippsburg, ME. While you can't control the damage it causes it your commercial building, there are things you can do to protect your business. Having the right storm insurance can save your company a lot of money. Here are some things you should know when choosing your policy.

Check What it Actually Covers

It is important to know exactly what your insurance coverage looks like. You want to make sure that the structure of the building is covered, as well as all office equipment. Flooding is one of the biggest problems caused by storms, so all electronics are vulnerable and should be on your policy.

Get Enough Coverage

One of the biggest issues business owners face after their building has been damaged is that they don't have enough coverage. A lot of times people want to save money by having a lower premium, so they underestimate the value of their business. Oftentimes, this ends up costing them way more than it would have to pay for full coverage. If you aren't sure about the full value of your business, consider working with an insurance adjuster.

Understand What Is Not in the Plan

While your storm insurance typically covers all damage caused directly by the storm, it may not cover problems that could have been prevented in the first place. For instance, if you end up with mold growth from flooding caused by the storm, you may end up paying for it out of pocket. This is why it is vital to call a restoration company to handle the cleanup process immediately following the storm.
If you have questions about your policy or aren't sure what kind of coverage you have, talk to your insurance company sooner rather than later. Storm insurance is not something that you want to figure out after the threat has already hit. Having the right plan in place can help ensure that your business in Phippsburg, ME, survives any disaster.

4 Ways To Avoid Bathroom Mildew

10/7/2020 (Permalink)

Mold and scale on old bathroom walls Bathroom mildew in a Phippsburg, ME home

Avoid A Humidity Problem In Your Bathroom

One of the best ways to avoid bathroom mildew is to keep excess moisture from forming in your home. When areas are left damp, mold can begin forming in as little as 24-48 hours. Luckily, mold and mildew require moist environments and cannot take hold in dry areas. For this reason, bathrooms are a common place for mold to and mildew to begin forming. However, bathrooms are not the only source of moisture. If you have a swamp cooler, it could be contributing to the problem. By following the four steps listed below, you can help ensure that you do not end up with a humidity problem in your bathroom.

1. Clean the Swamp Cooler
Prevent mold from spreading around your home by cleaning your swamp cooler on a regular basis. Otherwise, water could gather along ducts and drip pans and mold could begin forming.

2. Repair the Swamp Cooler
If you notice a leak or if your swamp cooler is acting unusual, have it fixed immediately. Left unrepaired, any extra moisture could wind up as bathroom mildew.

3. Let Some Moisture Out
Swamp coolers work by releasing evaporated moisture into your home. This moisture can build up over time and lead to mold problems. You can cut down on the moisture that accumulates in your home by opening a window or running a dehumidifier.

4. Switch To an A/C Unit
If you cannot seem to get rid of the excess moisture accumulating in your home, you may need to consider switching to an A/C unit. Swamp coolers are ideal for dryer climates, but they can lead to continuous problems in wetter climates.
If you have bathroom mildew in Phippsburg, ME, a professional mold remediation company can work to identify the source of the problem and clean any moldy areas. By working with a team of experts, you can have your home back to its pre-mildew condition as soon as possible.

3 Important Things To Understand Sewer Damage Cleanup

10/7/2020 (Permalink)

Sewer water Sewer damage in Georgetown, ME

Take The Following Measures During Sewer Cleanup Process

When external flooding happens or the sewer line backs up, your home is exposed to hazardous fluid. Known as black water, this liquid is a problem as it's filled with high levels of bacteria. The longer it sits, the more opportunity it has to seep into your porous substances. Bleach and soapy water won't be able to effectively kill the microorganisms since they're buried deep within materials. In order to effectively sanitize the house, homeowners in Georgetown, ME, should take the following measures in their sewer cleanup procedures.

1. Eliminate Contamination
Because traditional cleaning formulas act at the surface level, effectively disinfecting the space means to take out things that absorbed the tainted moisture. This reduces the number of spores. Using a moisture monitor and close observation, test the walls, flooring, and objects. Locate the range of impact. Then, begin extracting anything that has been harmed. Keep in mind that non-porous pieces can be treated, and some valuables could be saved through content cleaning methods. If you need assistance, a water restoration company would have the necessary equipment to handle any sewer backup complications.

2. Dry Out the Area
Lingering dampness poses several concerns: It can lead to a musty odor, structural warping, and mold growth. Part of your attention during the sewer cleanup should go to airing out the affected locations. This starves the microbes out and assists in maintaining the building's integrity. Therefore, run fans, vents, and dehumidifiers until normal humidity ranges are restored. Keep in mind that the air conditioner vents move things throughout the residence. Avoid using this device as it could make the situation worse.

3. Replace Anything Ruined
Chances are the flooded toilet created quite a wet mess. The final stage of remediation is to bring everything back together. Purchase new fixtures and flooring. Patch and repaint the drywall.
Be proactive, and work quickly in your sewer cleanup efforts. Concentrate on minimizing water damage and spore accumulation.

Top 5 Grilling Safety Tips

9/24/2020 (Permalink)

Scrubbing utensil used for cleaning a dirty grill. BBQ Grill Background Theme Clean your grill after every use

Ways To Prevent a Fire Grill In Your Home

According to the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), outdoor grilling is responsible for an average of 10,200 residential fires every year. Don't let yourself become part of that statistic. Abide by the following safety tips to help prevent your home in Woolwich, ME, from succumbing to a grill fire.

1. Never Leave Your Grill Unattended.
Grills generate open flames, which can quickly spread out of control if they aren't carefully monitored and maintained. Always stay with your grill while it's on and keep a close eye on the fire.

2. Only Use Your Grill Outside.
A good way to prevent a barbeque fire is to only use your grill outside in an open area. Never grill underneath overhanging structures or on an enclosed balcony or porch.

3. Clean Your Grill After Every Use.
Grills accumulate grease each time you use them, especially if you're cooking meat. It's vital that you take the time to scrub excess grease and fat from the grill to prevent a grill fire.

4. Wear Proper Clothing While Grilling.
Loose or dangling sleeves can accidentally come in contact with the grill and quickly catch fire. Prevent this from happening by only wearing tight-fitting clothing that won't dangle over the flame.

5. Regularly Check for Propane Leaks.
This is an especially important task to perform before your first barbeque of the season. You can check for gas leaks by applying a light soap and water solution to the hose and turning on the gas. If the solution bubbles, then there's a propane leak. Likewise, you might be able to smell a gas leak.
Following proper grill safety protocol is the best way to prevent fire and smoke damage. A grill fire can quickly spread out of control and consume your house if you aren't careful. Contact fire remediation experts for more information, or if your home has recently suffered any type of fire damage.

Tips to Keep Your Commercial Building Safe After a Fire

9/21/2020 (Permalink)

How To Keep Looters Away During The Restoration Process

Oftentimes, fires cause such destruction that your commercial building is not able to be as secure as it was. Windows break due to the extreme heat, and the structure sometimes becomes less secure, which allows thieves to enter more easily. Although there may be a lot of fire damage to deal with, it is important to remember to protect the valuable items that are still salvageable. Here are some things you can do to help keep away looters during the restoration process.

Board-up and Tarp Services

One of the biggest mistakes business owners make after a fire is not boarding up the building properly. A restoration company should be able to do this for you right away to help keep looting to a minimum. They can also find ways to enter through the roof, so it is crucial to cover those areas that have been affected.

Lock-up or Remove Valuables

While it may not be feasible to remove all valuable items from your building during the fire cleanup, you should take or lockup what you can. If the fire damage isn't too bad and you are still up and running, have employees take laptops and other important items home with them at the end of each work day. You may want to consider keep important documents in a safe that is secured to the floor as well.

Hire Security

Hiring security is one of the best ways to ensure that your building won't be robbed. While it can be expensive to hire someone to be there at night, it can be worth it to have the peace of mind that your assets are being protected.
If you are unsure where to begin, consider hiring a professional fire damage restoration company in Woolwich, ME, to help you with the details. You can also speak to your local authorities to see what they recommend as well. Just remember to stay vigilant during this time and try to cover all of your bases.

Suing Your Landlord for Mold Problems

9/1/2020 (Permalink)

a lawyer in his office showing a document with the text lawsuit written in it Suing your landlord for mold problems

Suing Your Landlord for Mold Problems

If you have had to have mold removal professionals come into your business lately, you may also face extensive damage to your rental building in Topsham, ME. This damage could have been caused by the toxic black mold. If this is the case, you will want to contact your lawyer and have the mold tested for toxicity in case you should sue your landlord for your mold problems.

Insurance Coverage
Before you decide to sue your landlord, you should contact your renter's insurance immediately if you face black mold damage to your commercial property. Your renter's insurance may cover the cost of replacing or repairing any damaged items you have, depending on your policy and the cause of the mold. For instance, certain policies may exclude mold that occurs from leaky plumbing that has allowed the mold to grow over time. If you do not have renter's insurance or your policy does not cover your losses due to mold, you should consider suing your landlord.

Small Claims Court
The first step to suing your landlord is to determine if the mold is something they should have prevented. Fortunately, if you face under about $10,000 of black mold-related damage due to their negligence, you can sue your landlord for your losses in small claims court. The steps for suing for mold damage include:

  • Determining if you have a strong case
  • Writing a demand letter to your landlord
  • Preparing evidence on your mold-related losses
  • Presenting your case in small claims court
  • Collecting a court judgment

If you have recently had to have mold remediation performed on your commercial building, you could be facing thousands of dollars in damage. The first thing you should do is see if your mold-related losses are covered under your renter's insurance. If you do not have a policy or it is not covered, you should consider suing your landlord in small claims court.

What Is Category 3 Water Damage?

9/1/2020 (Permalink)

Water flows out of road sewage hatch Category 3 water, also known as blackwater, is the most dangerous type of contamination

While all floods of all kinds can be devastating, certain types of flood water are significantly more dangerous than others. Water can cause heavy damage, so the best way to protect your property is preventing the accident from happening in the first place. Arm yourself with knowledge to help protect your home in Topsham, ME.

Types of Floods

Flood water is categorized based upon the types of contaminants present. As such, there are three primary types:

Category 1: This type of water is completely free of contaminants and biohazards. Theoretically, it is completely safe for human and animal consumption, but you definitely still should never attempt to drink it. Category 1 water can evolve into a different form if it comes into contact with outside contaminants.
Category 2: Category 2 water has a mild amount of contamination. It usually comes from used washing machine water or dirty dishwater. It can result in a few health issues if consumed.
Category 3: Category 3 water, also known as blackwater, is the most dangerous type of contamination. It's categorized as flooding that has either come into contact with raw sewage, human feces or some other type of biohazard. It commonly emerges from toilet overflow and sewage back flow.

Preventing Category 3 Water Damage
Because blackwater is so dangerous, you should absolutely never attempt to handle the situation yourself. If your home does become flooded, remediation should be left to flood experts. Instead, you should focus on preventing the incident from happening in the first place.
There are numerous ways to prevent flooding. Proper maintenance of gutters, toilets and other pipes is essential to preventing Category 3 water damage. Establish a regular routine that involves cleaning out pipes and gutters to help prevent clogs.
Category 3 flood water is a serious issue that's best left to the professionals. If you find that your home has fallen victim to this issue, you need to contact flood remediation experts immediately.

How to Claim a Tax Deduction for Office Storm Damage

9/1/2020 (Permalink)

Damage to the roof and ceiling of an office following a violent storm Office storm damage in Harpswell, ME

Businesses located in violent weather zones face the likely prospect of eventual devastation. When environmental trauma occurs, hiring a storm restoration service to commence repairs becomes requisite. The upside to this scenario is that you may request a Storm Damage tax break.

Natural Disaster Coverage

To receive a deduction, an insurance claim must be filed, so have an appropriate policy in place before your office in Harpswell, ME is stricken. Not limited to storms, protection options also exist for other forms of weather phenomena, including:

Floods
Blizzards
Tornadoes
Earthquakes
Hurricanes

Depending upon your locale’s susceptibility, one or more of these coverage styles may suit your needs.

Filing Loss Deductions
Assure your approval by becoming knowledgeable regarding the collection request process. Always complete paperwork within a timely manner, as missing deadlines can bring about eventual rejection. Generally, Storm Damage declarations must happen with the same year as the destructive weather event, although expenses endured within federally declared disaster areas are sometimes deemed exceptions.
Subtract the insurance funds you receive from the overall cost of damages. Note that this figure is adjusted differently depending upon whether the property in question was purchased or acquired through other means. Also, you will be required to determine the building’s decrease in fair market value as a result of the environmental impact. You may need to consult a property specialist to determine this figure.
Rules for tax deductible losses pertaining to businesses are more relaxed than for those concerning personal properties. However, normal building deterioration is not covered and requests for reimbursement regarding future profits or income are similarly prohibited. Seek Form 4684, Casualties and Thefts, for your official declaration. The deductible amount is to be listed within Schedule A, Itemized Deductions.
Building repairs are expensive so don’t jeopardize receiving the government assistance you deserve with improper filing. Be certain your Storm Damage claim is handled correctly and relax knowing your financial burden will be lessened.

4 Tips for Drying a Building

8/15/2020 (Permalink)

When your building in Woolwich, ME, floods, you likely have trusted water mitigation specialists you can call. What you do before they arrive can make a difference in how much damage your building ultimately has. Here are some damage tips to minimize the problem caused by flooding.

1. Schedule Remediation

The first thing you do, of course, is call your local technicians. They can give you a timeline for their arrival and answer any questions that you have. If they cannot arrive right away, they may have cleaning tips or a task list for you to complete before they do.

2. Increase Air Flow

One simple way to start drying out your building after a pipe burst is to improve the air flow throughout it. If your HVAC unit is not part of the flooded area, keep the fan turned on to constantly circulate air. Opening windows can give you a nice cross breeze that helps evaporate water on surfaces. Follow secondary damage tips to prevent mold and additional problems.

3. Start at the Top

Some flooding affects more than one floor. If you need to pump water out of your building, start at the highest point where standing water is located. That way, if the process inadvertently displaces some of the water, it won't be in an area you have already dried.

4. Stay Safe

Finally, always use appropriate safety precautions. Wear rubber boots and gloves. If you suspect the water has become contaminated, don other protective clothing such as coveralls or a face mask. Always turn off the electricity to the affected area before entering it to avoid shock.
You may not have the tools and expertise to completely mitigate the flooding in your building, but you can stop the water damage from getting bigger. By following these damage tips, you can be ready when the certified technicians arrive to repair and restore your building.

Nor'easter Preparation and Restoration

8/13/2020 (Permalink)

A storm wave crashes over a front house A Nor'easter can do major damage to your Bath, ME, home

A Nor'easter can do major damage to your Bath, ME, home. Fortunately, knowing some basic facts about these storms as well as information on the restoration process can help you keep your home safe.

Preparing for Nor'easters

Understanding a storm is key to preparing for it. The following are some helpful Nor'easter facts:

  • Occur along the East Coast from the Mid-Atlantic up to Canada
  • Most devastating in the winter
  • Bring heavy snow, rain and ice along with strong winds

If a strong storm is predicted to hit your area, make sure to stock up on non-perishable food, potable water and other emergency supplies. To prepare your home, make sure your roof is in good condition. Repair or replace any missing or damaged shingles. Make sure the shutters and gutters are secure. Clean out the gutters if you have not done so recently. Trim back any limbs that are too close to the house.

Storm Restoration
Unfortunately, even well-prepared homes can suffer extensive damage from a Nor'easter. After the storm has cleared, there will be a lot of work to do. Too much snow can cause a roof to collapse under the weight, so use a roof rake to clear the roof of built-up snow. If you experience flooding, it is important to act quickly to prevent mold growth. Take a detailed photo or video evidence to document the damage, then begin drying out the property. You can use buckets, pumps or specialized vacuums to remove standing water. Turn on fans and a dehumidifier to dry out remaining moisture. Then disinfect all affected items. When everything is clean and dry, you can begin repairing and replacing the damaged items.
Whether your home has damage from a Nor'easter or another strong storm, the cleanup process can be overwhelming. Fortunately, a certified restoration service can help you get your home back to normal quickly and safely.