A Tale Of Two Water Damage Losses

A condominium owner in your town has a unit that he rents out during the “season”to help pay his mortgage and insurance expenses. Last month his renter called him to say that the cold water supply hose on the washing machine burst during the night. Before he could wake up, find the main water shut off and stop the flooding there was 1 inch of water in the hallway to the front door, the kitchen and guest bathroom were flooded and water was beginning to soak the living room and guest bedroom carpets.

The owner had the condominium maintenance man pull out as much water as he could with a wet/dry vacuum, open the windows and run the ceiling fans to encourage the unit to dry out. This time of year the humidity is low and there was a nice breeze with temps in the mid 70’s during the day. At the end of the next day the carpets felt almost dry and all the tiled flooring looked as if nothing had ever happened. The renter went home the following Sunday.

The condo sat empty for two weeks before the next renter was scheduled to arrive and when he did arrive the owner got this call. “The condo smells really musty and the walls are black just above the baseboard”. The renter checked into a local motel and the condo owner called a Professional Water Damage Restoration Company.

The Restoration Company removed all the mold affected materials in a containment, made sure the structure was completely dry, cleaned and treated the structural components behind the walls and rebuilt the areas where building materials were removed. The Restoration Company then arranged for a Certified Indoor Environmentalist (CIE) to perform an air (clearance) test to document that the condo had no mold growing inside.

What Happened here?

The original water damage was never properly dried out. Mold spores are present in the air inside our homes and in the outside air all the time. All that is needed for mold to begin to grow in your home is a water source. The food mold likes is cellulose. Cellulose includes the paper on your drywall and wood molding, trim and cabinets. If any of these materials stay wet for more than 3 days mold can begin to grow. The number one rule in the water damage business is to get it completely dry quickly. No moisture, no mold growth.  

So…given that the flooding happened, what action should have been taken to lessen the expense and shorten the time to get this property back in rentable condition?

Scenario #2

A condominium owner in your town has a unit that he rents out during the “season”to help pay his mortgage and insurance expenses. Last month his renter called him to say that the cold water supply hose on the washing machine burst during the night. Before he could wake up, find the main water shut off and stop the flooding there was 1 inch of water in the hallway to the front door, the kitchen and guest bathroom were flooded and water was beginning to soak the living room and guest bedroom carpets.

The owner tells the condominium maintenance man to call the best local Water Damage and Mold Remediation Company. The one a friend recommended because of the way they handled his water damage. This Restoration Company responds 24 hours a day within 30 minutes. This Restoration Company performs free mold inspections and gives free estimates. This Restoration Company helped his friend deal with the insurance company and even helped to pay part of his deductable. This Restoration Company has technicians who are certified by The Indoor Air Quality Association (IAQA).

The Restoration Company receives the call and responds to the flood within 30 minutes. The technicians extract all the water from the carpets and set up dehumidification and drying equipment. Base trim molding may need to be removed to insure that the drywall behind dries properly. The technicians monitor and adjust the drying process as the unit dries out. Typically 3-4 days later the unit is completely dry. The base is reinstalled and the condo unit is ready for the next renter.

The cost for drying this flood properly is less than half of the cost of Scenario#1 and the condo unit has minimal down time and in this case no loss of rental income.

Be smart and choose the best Water Damage restoration and Mold remediation Company in your area. Choose the Water Damage restoration and Mold remediation Company that knows what to do to minimize your costs and down time. Choose the company that operates with a company-wide sense of urgency.

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