Renter’s Insurance Covers Mold in Common-Sense Situations
Mold Cleanup Needs to Happen Quickly.
Defense against mold in a multiple dwelling is a team effort. It’s you, your fellow tenants, and your landlord vs. the mold. Your role is to make mold unwelcome in your living space. Rental insurance is your partner but there are some simple but important rules to remember.
1. If You See Mold and Plan to File a Claim, Contact Your Agent Immediately
Relatively speaking, mold damage starts small and gets worse in slow motion. If you deal with a mold problem right away, it’s probably an easy cleanup. If you are slow to file a claim, the mold will continue to grow, and the delay will increase the risk of having the insurance company deny it. Their position will be that any increase in damage from the time that you first observed it to the time you filed the claim is your responsibility. (Hint: When you file the claim, take pictures of the mold so that the adjuster can see the extent of the damage at the time you reported it.)
2. Mold Cleanup Is Covered If the Original Water Damage Was Covered
If your space has experienced water damage, and if the repair of water damage was covered by your rental insurance, then any mold that grows because of the residual moisture is also covered. This, of course, assumes that you report it to the insurance company right away.
3. Some Mold Cleanup Is Not Covered
Not all rental policies are alike. Your agent can help you understand under what circumstances mold removal is and is not covered. One example of mold damage probably not covered is mold that results from flooding. Another is mold that appears in bathrooms and other areas that are inherently moist.
Mold Cleanup Needs to Happen Quickly
It should be removed quickly and completely, and your rental insurance is there to help. Local mold removal specialists are available in Las Vegas to do the work and get it right the first time.
Does This House Come With a Floaty: Understanding Flood Zones
If the concept of a flood zone is new to you, it can be slightly intimidating.
Many homeowners are not familiar with the idea of a flood zone, especially if they’ve never lived in a high-risk flooding area or an area prone to severe weather, and when searching in the Las Vegas
area they may be shocked at the necessities of these zones. As a way of minimizing the shock, it helps to understand the zoning designations and some of the necessary requirements.
1. The Four Main Zone Types
There are four Main zone types, and if you have never heard of these zones, you likely live in a minimal flood hazard area. The four zone types are:
• Minimal Flood Hazard Areas: typically designated as Zone C or X, these areas are considered low risk.
• Moderate Hazard Flood Areas: typically designated as Zone B, these areas likely experience flooding but not frequently.
• Special Flood Hazard Areas: these are the areas with the highest risk of flooding, and they are typically designated as Zone V or A.
• D Zones: these are areas that FEMA has not given a designation to yet.
2. Zone Maps
Every flood zone is designated on maps readily available through the FEMA Map Service Center. FEMA created these maps to offer valuable insights for the creation of flood management plans as well as insurance coverage by compiling information from the statistical research of river flows, storm tides, rainfall, topographic surveys, and even hydraulic analysis.
3. Zones and Insurance Requirements
While many homeowners might be irked at the idea of paying for additional insurance coverage, it is necessary to keep in mind that in specific high-risk areas the likelihood of your home succumbing to a flood is significantly increased. Therefore, FEMA, the government, and insurance companies have your best interests in mind when they require this type of coverage in high-risk areas.
If the concept of a flood zone is new to you, it can be slightly intimidating, but the reality is that FEMA designates the zones to ensure that you and your property are protected. You can check FEMA’s website, your local municipality, or you can reach out to flood and restoration specialists in your area for more information.
Is a Small Business Claim Hiding in Your Pipes?
Water-related damage can take a huge bite out of your profits.
Plumbing problems in your building can hit your pockets hard. Insurance provider The Hartford released a study showing that the eighth most expensive business claim is bursting pipes and water damage. The average claim is $17,000. Any business in Las Vegas is at risk of unforeseen plumbing hazards. Keep reading to learn more about preventing these costly mishaps.
Plumbing Disaster Prevention
A pipe break in your building isn't fun — and neither is filing a business insurance claim. Fortunately, there are steps you can take to reduce the possibility of ending up in this situation. Consider following these simple maintenance tips:
• Place non-waterproof items above floor level
• Seal gaps and cracks in your property's foundation and exterior
• Know how to turn off the building's main water supply after a pipe breaks
• Remove snow and ice from the roof
• Clear drains, downspouts and gutters
• Keep the building's heating at or above 55 degrees
• Cover and insulate exposed pipes
Business Insurance Coverage
Commercial property insurance may omit coverage for water damage, depending on its source. For instance, the policy may cover costs associated with pipe breaks but not rainfall, flooding, or sewage backups. In most cases, mold-related hazards are excluded. However, you can have your insurer add this coverage to your policy, which is known as an endorsement or "rider." So, if you need to file a business claim, you can have confidence knowing your merchandise, paperwork, furnishings, and building are well-protected.
Water-related damage can take a huge bite out of your profits. You need insurance so if you have to file a business claim you'll be covered. Also, take preventive measures to avoid the hassle of pipes bursting. If you do encounter a major emergency, it's ideal to bring in a reputable commercial cleanup company in Las Vegas, NV, to handle the job. By doing this, you can return to the daily operations of your business much faster.
Stop a Leaky Faucet Before It Wreaks Havoc – Here’s How
If you have a leaking faucet you should act quickly.
Stop a Leaking Faucet Before It Causes Damage - Here's How
A leak beneath the kitchen sink is often something that irritates most homeowners, but it is not something that concerns them. It should be, however. A leaky kitchen sink that is not taken care of can result in gradual water damage (which is not covered by insurance), costly kitchen repair and possible flooding. If you notice a leak in your kitchen pipes, you need to take the following steps right away to prevent further damage and to ensure that any damage sustained is covered by your insurance agency:
- Shut off the water valves
- Contact your insurance company
- Reach out to your Las Vegas, NV, water restoration company
Water in the Home Should Not Be Taken Lightly
Serious water damage is not just the result of a sudden deluge of water. Rather, most water damage in homes is the result of ongoing moisture problems. One of the most common problems can be found beneath the kitchen sink.
In addition to structural damage, a leaky pipe can result in mold growth, which can quickly spread beyond the beneath-the-sink-area, and pipe burst. If a pipe burst occurs, your problems become much worse and much costlier, as now you have to deal with flooding and not just a few annoying drips.
How To Spot a Pipe Leak
If you cannot hear the pipes dripping, there are a few signs you can look for to spot damaged pipes. Those include:
- Wet carpet around the area
- Bowing floorboards around the sink
- Soaked items beneath the sink
- Cabinet or floor discoloration
- An unusually high water bill
If you notice any of the above and cannot figure out the cause, check your pipes. If you do not notice a leak when the water is on, the problem may be a faulty seal, in which case you would need to fill the sink basin and wait for it to drain.
If you have a leaky pipe, it is imperative to take proper kitchen repair methods right away, otherwise, you risk flooding. Once you’ve shut off your water valves and contacted your insurance agency, reach out to your Las Vegas, NV, water restoration team for restoration assistance.
How To Approach Mold Safely
Most mold remediation must be done by professionals.
How to Approach Mold in a Safe Manner
When you discover mold in your home, your first instinct is probably to get rid of it as soon as possible. You may want to grab the nearest cleaning supplies and start scrubbing. Cleaning mold without face masks or other proper protective equipment, however, can cause you to breathe in the mold spores. If you are going to get near the mold damage in your home, you need to put on at least three things:
- Face mask to protect lungs
- Gloves to protect hands
- Goggles to protect eyes
Cover the Face
When the mold remediation specialists in Northwest Las Vegas, NV, arrive to remove the mold, one of the first things you will probably see them do is put on face masks. This keeps them from breathing in the spores that are already in the air when mold is present as well as those that will be released into the air as soon as they start the cleanup process. A well-fitting mask can keep mold spores out of their lungs while they work.
Cover the Hands
You should never touch mold with your bare hands. While most of the mold can be washed away with vigorous washing with detergent, some spores may linger under your nails or on your arms. If you must remove items from the area where there is mold damage, always use gloves, preferably those that cover most of your arms as well.
Cover the Eyes
Another place you do not want mold spores to end up is in your eyes. If you are in an area where mold growth is being removed, it is a good idea to wear goggles. Try to find a pair that does not have ventilation holes, as spores may find a way to your eyes through those holes.
Most mold remediation must be done by professionals to ensure the problem is handled thoroughly. If you are around mold, however, face masks, gloves and goggles can help protect you from its spores.
How Long Does Mold Remediation Take?
Mold containment in Las Vegas, NV.
Mold removal is a service available in and around Las Vegas, NV. Building owners can expect the services of a professional to take between 3 and 7 days, depending on the severity of the infiltration and the materials involved.
What Does Mold Affect?
Because all molds, including black mold, is an organic organism, anything that can offer moisture and nutrients is fair game for its digestive process. That can be bad news for anything porous.
• Wooden surfaces infiltrated by mold can be seriously degraded if left unchecked.
• Drywall in moist settings like bathrooms can be subject to rapid mold growth.
• Grout and caulking in bathrooms, especially around tubs, showers, sinks and toilets are materials that can require mold removal.
• Ceiling tiles are another spot mold can take hold if water enters through leaks.
• Carpets and the padding beneath can grow mold if dampness is chronic or if a flood has soaked through them.
How is Mold Remediated?
Because mold is ubiquitous on Earth, it is impossible to rid any building of it completely. Mold remediation involves bringing the level of this organism back to acceptable and non-damaging levels. One of the first steps of remediation is discovering the source of mold overgrowth and eliminating the problem. Moisture can collect because of malfunctioning HVAC systems, plumbing leaks, roof leaks, window and door frame leaks, or humidity levels above 45%. Containment procedures will be undertaken, and air scrubbers will be in place as the work goes on. Mold colonies on nonporous surfaces will be treated with antimicrobial and antifungal substances. Porous surfaces that can be disinfected will be cleaned, and others, such as drywall, will be cut away and replaced.
Discovering mold in a building is no picnic, but with today’s mold removal services, it is far from the end of the world. With a bit of patience, freshness can be reclaimed and discouragement banished.
Top 5 Causes of House Fires
If your Las Vegas, NV home catches fire SERVPRO of Northwest Las Vegas is available 24/7 to assist with your emergency.
5 Leading Causes Of House Fires
Regardless of the cause, a home fire in Las Vegas, NV can be devastating. Still, knowing the leading causes of these fires can empower you to take steps to avoid them. Here are the top five most common fire causes according to the National Fire Protection Association.
1. Cooking Equipment
Nearly half of all residential fires started as a result of leaving cooking foods unattended. Frying food increases the danger of fires because grease is highly flammable. Be sure to monitor your cooking at all times, and call for help should a problem arise.
2. Heating Equipment
Central heat does not pose as great a risk as space heaters and wood stoves. Never leave a space heater unattended and keep all flammable materials at least three feet away from the appliances.
3. Electrical and Lighting Equipment
Electricity is everywhere in the home, which is why it is imperative that all equipment and wiring is installed correctly. Faulty lighting, plugs and cords, or meters and switches all contribute to electrical fires. They account for nearly 13 percent of all home fire accidents.
Arson is a serious crime with serious consequences. Between 2010 and 2014, intentional fires were the cause of 8 percent of residential fires. Unfortunately, children are often held responsible for these fires; 40 percent of arson arrests were individuals under the age of 18.
5. Smoking Materials
Even though smoking only accounts for 5 percent of all house fires, it is the number one cause of fire deaths. The biggest risk factor is smoking near or on mattresses, bedding, or upholstered furniture.
There can be many causes of a home fire, but there are even more ways to prevent one. Using common sense safety measures can help keep your Las Vegas, NV house safe for years to come. In the unfortunate event of a fire, there are companies that can help with fire cleaning and you get back on track.
Get the Facts About Secondary Damage After a Flood
Mold damage in Las Vegas, NV.
Secondary damage is a term used to describe factors such as high humidity and black mold. Water damage can develop fast in Las Vegas, NV and it usually does not take long for significant problems to result. You should be aware of what damage can happen and what to do about it so that you can take the appropriate action.
Understanding Types of Secondary Water Damage
You should know what the different types of secondary water damage are in order to know what to look for following a flood or similar water problem. The following are what you should be aware of:
- Mold growth, which can start to occur in as little as 24 hours
- Corrosion of certain metal components and materials
- Damage to your personal belongings and elements, such as flooring and walls
- Electrical damage if the water is able to penetrate sockets and anything else powered by electricity
- Wood rot when wood is allowed to remain wet for a prolonged period of time
Employing the Proper Cleaning Techniques
Beginning cleanup quickly can be imperative to saving your possessions. If you get started with cleaning up excess water fast enough, you may be able to prevent, or at least reduce, black mold and other damage. Make sure to get all of the water out after shutting off all utilities to the impacted area. Run a dehumidifier and open windows to finish drying out the space. From here, you may want to use warm water and detergent that produces limited suds to thoroughly scrub the space. Once you complete this task, go back over everything with a sanitizing solution, and make sure that it dries completely.
You are now aware of the issues that can result from black mold and other types of secondary water damage. With this information, you have the knowledge necessary to better detect these problems and eradicate them as quickly as possible.
What Items Can You Salvage After a Fire?
Fire damage in Northwest Las Vegas, NV.
What Items Can Be Salvaged After A Fire?
Fires leave behind many different types of damage. From smoke to soot, there are a variety of substances that can damage items in the vicinity of the flames. Homeowners in Northwest Las Vegas, NV need to pursue content cleaning immediately following a fire to attempt to salvage as much as possible. A professional dry-cleaning service can salvage clothes, while other professionals who specialize in fire damage restoration may be able to help you with family heirlooms. Either way, you do not want to automatically throw out precious items.
You want to be careful you do not do the wrong thing when trying to salvage clothes. Attempting to wash the soot out of clothes on your own may only end up driving the soot further into the fabric. Take your clothes to professionals who know how to treat clothes exposed to smoke and flames. This will be your best bet to save them.
2. Family Albums and Books
Similar to how you need to take clothing to a professional dry-cleaning service, you need to take photo albums and books to a professional conservator. Exposure to soot can cause pages to stick together. If you attempt to pry the pages open yourself, you may end up damaging the books beyond repair.
You do not want to get any water on furniture that still has soot on it. Instead, you can try to remove the soot yourself with a strong vacuum. However, you do not want to place the nozzle of the vacuum directly on the upholstery as this will only drive the soot further into the material. With nonporous surfaces, you can use an ultrasonic cleaner.
There are plenty of other items that can be salvaged following a fire. You may need to utilize content storage in Northwest Las Vegas, NV for the time being until a professional can look at your belongings. Although you should still take pictures of your damaged items for insurance purposes, dry-cleaning and vacuuming services can be highly beneficial.
Preparing Your Business for a Winter Storm and Its Aftermath
Start an emergency first aid and food supply in case of a snow-in
A winter wonderland can become winter worrying for your Northwest Las Vegas, NV, business. Fortunately, it can be prevented by your actions and treated by an expert storm damage restoration crew in your city of operations. Knowledge of what to do regarding a storm, however, saves money and time.
Use a Prevention Mindset to Protect Property and People
There are several actions to take before and during winter storms to protect your business and those who keep it functioning from harm:
- Install glass that’s resistant to wind
- Inspect foundation for preexisting damage
- Clear gutters to stop ice dams leading to a pipe break
- Check the roof for damaged shingles and proper sitting
- Keep roads and sidewalks clear of snow
- Start an emergency first aid and food supply in case of a snow-in
- Always check local weather websites or television stations
Establish What to Do Following the Storm
Once a winter storm has passed, it is advisable to check the news or weather once more to decide on your next step. If it’s simply a temporary calm before a major resurgence, you should ensure everything is secure like in the preparation phase before retreating to a safe place.
When the storm has subsided for the foreseeable future according to an expert source, an inspection of the property is advised. Everything should be checked for storm damage and cleared of heavy snow weighing it down. A pipe break is likely from sustained wind and freezing temperatures. Pipes need to be tested by running the sink and going along each pipe looking for visible damage.
Prepare for the Aftermath
If you do not notice damage, it is worthwhile to hire a professional. You may have missed something you didn’t know how to find. Damage identified needs repairs before it worsens. Your business insurance will work out covering any services necessary and getting them started.
Being familiar with winter storm risks at all stages is a strong business practice in cold, snowy climates. You can teach employees and business partners to stay safe. With everything safe, your business can remain operational without major hurdles.