Did you know that the average home loses 14% of the water delivered to it through leakage? When leakage occurs, water damage can occur. When water damage happens, many homeowners like to take the do-it-yourself approach. However, this is not a good idea because water can cause health risks and can create significant damage the longer it is left in place. When water damage occurs, it is imperative to begin the removal and cleanup as soon as possible. One very important reason to hire a professional water damage restoration service to handle the work quickly is mold.
Mold can grow indoors and outdoors. It is especially prevalent in locations affected by water or if it has high humidity. If mold is not rapidly remediated, it can spread and cause neurological symptoms such as headaches, dizziness, memory loss, and affect concentration and attention span. It can also cause skin irritations and rashes, and serious pulmonary issues as well. In addition to potentially serious health issues, the damage to your property can be quiet costly, with the average water damage claim running in excess of $5,000. Water is the third largest cause of property owner loss, with nearly 40 percent of all homeowners reporting a loss due to water damage. In fact, between 2007 and 2009, over $9 billion in losses were reported to insurance companies. Many insurance companies now have exclusion clauses for mold. Those that do cover mold may deny the claim if the water damage was not addressed promptly, claiming the homeowner contributed to the damage by allowing the wet areas to fester. Some, insurance companies will offer a mold rider to a homeowner policy, though these can cost you hundreds and even thousands, depending on the climate where you live and other factors. It is important to read your policy carefully.
Mold can be found anyplace and can grow on virtually any organic material. However, since mold needs moisture to grow, the best approach is to help prevent the growth of mold and detecting it early by taking some precautionary steps such as:
· Use interior paints and primers that contain mold inhibitors
· Lower indoor humidity with the use of dehumidifiers and air conditioners
· Check hoses and pipes routinely and fix leaky plumbing as soon as possible
· Keep the gutters cleaned
· Check the roof periodically for leaks
· Do not use carpet around and in wet areas like bathrooms, kitchens, and basements
· Clean and dry wet areas within 48 hours
While taking precautions is wise; with water being the second most frequent reason for filing a claim, it's likely that one day you will have to deal with water damage in your home. When water damage is detected, calling a professional water damage restoration service as soon as possible will help to protect the health of you and others, mitigate property loss, and potentially protect your interests when filing a claim with your insurance company. While one of the joys of homeownership is maintaining and improving one's property themselves, there are times when it's best to leave the work to experts, and water damage is one of those times. Simply put, hiring an IICRC certified water damage restoration service with the right equipment, supplies, knowledge, and experience is the best method for safeguarding health, property, and even peace of mind.