For most North Carolina homes, it’s only a matter of time before severe weather results in exterior damage requiring repairs. For homeowners, this damage can cause significant stress, especially when the damage renders your home uninhabitable.
This is true even when you have home insurance to cover the repairs. To address the damage, restore your home and return to regular life, you’ll want to act soon after the storm—especially if you’re competing with other homeowners looking for storm repair and restoration services in your area. Here’s a brief overview of what to do after storm damage, and how to find the right repair and restoration service providers to work on your home.
Common Types of Storm Damage in Charlotte NC
North Carolina residents may be subject to a wide range of severe weather, depending on the season. The most common types of severe weather include thunderstorms, tropical storms, hurricanes, and tornadoes. In some parts of the state, flooding may be a threat to your home. In less common cases, severe winter storms can cause snow and ice damage.
Since September 2010, roughly 80 percent of the state’s population has resided in a county where a federal weather-related disaster was declared. Given the high rate of severe weather damage over time, local homeowners should be prepared to act when damage strikes their own home.
Addressing North Carolina Storm Damage
When severe weather causes damage to your home, homeowners should be proactive in starting the process of home repair and restoration. This process will include working with your insurance company and lining up a residential storm damage restoration service that can make timely repairs to your home.
To make this process as smooth as possible, homeowners are encouraged to take the following steps:
- Assess the safety of your home after a storm. Some types of damage, such as lost shingles or siding, don’t immediately compromise the integrity and safety of your home. But a fallen tree on a roof or flooding on your main floor may render your home uninhabitable until repairs are made. Your first step should always be focused on keeping yourself safe. If you need to vacate your home and find alternative shelter, do this first.
- Document the storm damage to your home. Photos and videos of the damage can be used to process an insurance claim, and they can also help repair and restoration services assess the scope of the damage and make plans for repair. The more documentation you provide, the faster insurance claim processing will go, which speeds up the process of repairing your home.
- Contact your insurance company. When severe weather damages your home, experts recommend filing a claim within 24 hours. This fast response is necessary to start the claims process. The longer you wait, the further back in line you might be, which slows down processing and repairs. A delayed response could result in additional damage to your home.
- Contact a Charlotte storm damage repair service. Don’t wait for your insurance company to process and approve your claim. As soon as the claim is filed, you want to start talking to local repair and restoration services to find a company that can provide the service you need on a timeline you deem acceptable. The repair service may also offer guidance in the insurance claims process to make sure insurance fairly covers the cost of repairs your home requires. After making initial contact, keep the service provider updated on the status of your insurance claim—especially if you’re holding off on repairs until your claim is approved.
- Find out if federal disaster assistance is available in your area. Federal disaster assistance may offer low-cost loans or other resources to help you repair your home. Like insurance, this process will require documentation of the damage and other supplementary information. Your insurance company and/or repair service provider may be able to direct you to federal aid.
How Do I Find Services for Storm Damage Repair Near Me?
While homeowners are often eager to secure a repair service after a storm has damaged their home, you should also be wary of signing a contract with service providers that canvas your neighborhood trying to win over clients. While some of these canvassers may be reputable sales professionals, others may be attempting to scam homeowners by getting them to sign unfair but legally binding contracts that lock you into terms that may not be in your best interest.
Instead, seek out a storm repair specialist based on their local reputation. Ask friends, family and neighbors which companies are handling the work on their home and use online reviews to vet local service providers based on overall customer satisfaction. You may also want to contact multiple candidates to find out what their availability is for repairing your home—if damage in your area is widespread, some providers may be experiencing project backlogs that could delay the repair and restoration of your home.
Severe storm damage to your home can be panic-inducing and destabilizing, taking away your shelter and creating large expenses that threaten your financial security. While you can’t control the weather or its effects on your home, you can control how you respond. With a proactive approach and a willingness to work the phones, you can kick-start the claims and repair processes and lay the groundwork for a full recovery.