How to recover from flooding, scams to watch out for
BATON ROUGE, La. (WAFB) - Baton Rouge is dealing with the aftermath of severe weather sweeping the region. The Better Business Bureau of South Central Louisiana is urging all homeowners to be careful when it comes to choosing businesses and contractors to help them with cleanup work.
If your house is flooded and you’re going through water damage restoration, you should be making a list of things. Check your insurance policy and know that flood damage is not covered by standard homeowners or renters insurance policies. In some high-risk flood areas, home and business owners may be required by law to carry flood insurance.
You should repair the damage and not make any permanent changes to your property until you get approval from your insurance provider. They may not fully reimburse you for repairs made without their permission. Remember to take photos of the storm damage to show your insurance company.
Also, get multiple opinions by shopping around and getting at least three different estimates before deciding on a contractor. Make sure the estimates are broken down the same way. Watch out for high-pressure sales tactics and less than trustworthy businesses. You can research company profiles at BBB.org to find reputable contractors.
The BBB said to ask for proof of liability, workers compensation, and licensing. Verify to make sure the contractor has the correct license to do work in your state. This protects you in case something happens while working on your property.
Also, get everything in writing by demanding a written contract from anyone you hire. Written, detailed proposals broken down into separate line items indicate that the contractor is thorough and has prepared an accurate estimate.
Lastly, beware of scammers looking to take advantage of an owner’s haste to repair the damage. Red flags include door-to-door workers who claim to have leftover materials and a contractor who shows up unannounced and claims your home is unsafe.
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