Recent Posts

How does Sewage Damage Work?

11/2/2022 (Permalink)

Sewage back up Sewage damage is caused by a backup of sewer water.

How does Sewage Damage Work?

When you are dealing with sewage damage in your Prescott, AZ home, you want to make sure that the job is done right. That's why we have highly trained technicians who will assess the damage and determine whether you need to call your insurance company. We will remove any damaged materials and contents that are non-salvageable while our crew is drying out the area. We use fans and dehumidifiers to completely dry out the affected area as quickly as possible so that mold won't grow.

What is Sewage Damage?

Sewage damage is caused by a backup of sewer water. This can be caused by several things. One of the most common causes is tree roots that have built up over time and are clogging up your sewer line. Other materials such as grease or food particles can also cause blockages in your pipes, causing sewage damage to your home.

Where does it come from?

Sewage damage can occur in your home, basement, or garage. When you have a sewage backup, it's called sewer backup. Sewer backups happen when water enters your pipes and mixes with the waste that is waiting for the sewer service to collect it.

When this happens, the water will push all the waste up through your pipes until it comes out onto your flooring or even into walls/ceilings.

The possible causes of sewage backups include:

  • A broken pipe allows water to fill up these areas of your home.
  • A storm or heavy rainstorm causes an overflow.

How do you clean it up?

To begin the cleanup of your flooded home, you will need:

  • Remove all damaged materials. For example, if drywall or insulation is stained by sewage water, remove it, and dispose of it properly. 
  • Remove non-salvageable items such as carpeting/flooring and cabinets in order to give yourself more space for clearing out excess moisture from your home's structure.

First, our highly trained technicians will assess the damage.

Our technicians will:

  • Check the area for any additional damage.
  • Check for signs of mold and mildew.
  • Check for signs of water damage, including standing water, pools, or puddles of water.
  • If there is evidence of sewage backup, we'll recommend that you contact a plumber to fix your plumbing system before we proceed with cleanup services.

Then we will determine whether you need to call your insurance company.

If you have insurance, it is best that you call your agent and let them know what has happened so they can help with the claim process. If you don't have a policy, we can help find one that fits your needs and budget.

If there was sewage damage in your home because of someone else’s negligence or carelessness, then the person responsible should pay for any damages caused by their negligence. 

While our crew is drying out the area, you should turn off the power to the room.

  • While our crew is drying out the area, you should turn off power to the room.
  • Turn off power at the circuit breaker or fuse box, not just at a single switch.
  • Do not use the room until it is completely dry.

We will shut off the water valve to prevent sewage backup.

The first thing we will do is shut off the water valve to prevent sewage backup. We can then shut off power to affected area. After that, we'll remove all contents from affected area and clean up any sewage backup before using fans and dehumidifiers to dry out the wet area.

We will remove any damaged materials and contents that are non-salvageable.

Our technicians will carefully remove all items from the affected area, including carpets and pads if necessary.

Our crew will use fans and dehumidifiers to completely dry out the affected area.

The fan will be used to circulate the air and help dry out the carpet faster. In addition, we will place a dehumidifier inside your home to remove excess moisture from the air. This prevents mold growth and mildew growth that can occur when there is excessive moisture in your home.

By using fans to circulate air throughout your home and dehumidifiers to remove excess moisture from it, we can prevent bacteria growth, mildew growth, or other types of unhealthy conditions that may occur if left untreated after sewage damage has occurred.

SERVPRO of Yavapai County is here to help you with any sewage damage, so feel free to give us a call at any time. Our team can be reached 24/7 by phone or e-mail.

Who Pays for Fire Damage in a Rental Property?

10/21/2022 (Permalink)

Are you covered? Make sure your rental property is covered by the appropriate policy.

Who Is Responsible for Fire Damage in a Rental Property?

If you've ever experienced a fire in a rental property in your Prescott, AZ area, you know it can be incredibly stressful. It's not just the potential loss of your belongings that worries you—you also must consider how the landlord will respond and what they're liable for. But what is your legal responsibility as a tenant? And how do insurance laws affect things like who pays for repairs, cleanup, and relocation costs? Here's what you need to know about dealing with fire damage in rental properties:

A landlord is responsible for providing a safe, habitable living space.

This means the landlord must take care of structural damage to the property and make sure it is up to code. For example, if there's faulty wiring or plumbing that causes a fire, then you will not be held responsible for the cost of repairing it.

Tenants are responsible for content damage in their rental unit (such as furniture or clothing). However, if you have renter's insurance and file a claim after an incident like this occurs in your apartment building, then you can get reimbursed by your insurer.

But what happens when a fire destroys your home?

If you're unfortunate enough to experience a fire in your home, you'll need to be aware of how fire damage is categorized. That's because the costs for repair or replacement of your property depend on whether the fire caused structural or content damage, or both.

Structural damage is caused by the fire itself—it's what makes things like walls and floors unsafe to use after a blaze has been extinguished. Content damage includes anything that was inside the building at the time of the fire—like furniture, clothing, appliances, and other belongings. Structural and content damages are often grouped together under one category called "casualty," but each type has its own implications for liability payments and insurance claims.

What are you and your landlord responsible for?

Your landlord is responsible for many aspects of fire damage repair, but there are some things that you should take care of as well.

If you're the tenant, here's what you can do:

  • Make sure that all electrical appliances are properly grounded and use a surge protector.
  • Keep flammable objects away from heating equipment and open flames.
  • Test smoke alarms at least once a month to make sure they're working properly. If the alarm doesn't work when tested, replace it immediately! 

In addition, not all states (or even individual counties) follow the same insurance laws.

If you're a landlord, you'll want to make sure that your rental property is covered by the appropriate policy. In some places, landlords are held liable for damage caused by their tenants; in others, they aren't held responsible at all.

It's important to note that there are no blanket rules regarding property damage cases—they vary from state to state and county to county. Some states have laws that favor landlords; others favor tenants; still, others protect both parties equally. The best way for you to know what kind of laws apply in your area is by contacting an experienced insurance agent or attorney who can inform you about how things work locally.

Conclusion

As you can see, fire damage in a rental property is complicated. If you’re in the middle of your own dispute over who pays for fire damage, it’s important to understand your rights—and those of your landlord. If you believe that he or she isn’t living up to their obligations as spelled out by law, contact an attorney and set up a consultation. They can help ensure that both parties are on equal footing when decisions are made about how best to move forward. 

How To Estimate Commercial Fire Damage

8/28/2022 (Permalink)

How To Estimate Commercial Fire Damage

commercial fire is devastating, and after a fire, you may feel confused, frustrated and scared. In many cases, the insurance companies have adjusters that will do the actual calculations, but you still need to tell them exactly what was lost in the fire. After contacting your insurance agent, you will need to estimate what was lost. This may seem like a difficult task, but there are very basic things that you can do to make it easier.

Take an Inventory

The first thing you want to do is take an inventory of everything that is damaged. Write it all down, even if it seems inconsequential. You should write down:

  • Damage to the exterior and interior of the structure
  • Inventory loss
  • Equipment loss, particularly electronics
  • Supply loss

Knowing what you lost is the first step in getting an accurate estimate of the damage caused by the fire and firefighters. Fighting the fire sometimes causes more damage than the fire itself.

Evaluate Structural Damage

You should only enter the structure when it is safe to do so. If the structure is damaged beyond repair or the damage is extensive, you can use the formula, square foot cost to rebuild or repair multiplied by the total square footage of room or structure to approximate the cost of rebuilding or repairing the damage. You will also need to add in the cost of water damage and fire damage restoration in Prescott, AZ for your calculations to be accurate.

Approximate Equipment Loss

Approximating damages in a commercial fire also includes damage to equipment, inventory, and supplies. You can do this by performing a reverse inventory. Take an estimate of what you had before the fire and subtract what you have now. This is what you lost. It is particularly important in a commercial fire where inventory and supplies are damaged.

Remember, insurance companies have adjusters that use formulas to estimate the value of what was lost. You should only need to give them an accurate picture of what was lost.

How To Remove Mold From Your Company's Carpets

8/23/2022 (Permalink)

Flooded office Water damage in Prescott Valley, AZ

When businesses suffer an infestation of mold, it often gets inside walls and ceilings. It may also appear within carpeted flooring, in which case a carpet cleaning specifically targeted at killing spores is required. What follows is the proper procedure for getting rid of foot-level fungi in Prescott Valley, AZ.

Carpet Mold Removal Safety

Any form of contact with mold contains risk. Protect yourself by using the following equipment:

  • Rubber gloves
  • Safety goggles
  • Respirators
  • Hazard suits
  • Disposable foot and head covers

Besides the possible effects to one’s health, eliminating carpets of mold spores can be time-consuming and laborious. An alternative to handling the task on your own is hiring a team of mold remediation specialists to tackle the job for you.

Carpet Mold Removal Procedure

To execute a proper office carpet cleaning, start by increasing the room’s ventilation. Open windows and doors near the affected area. Additionally, you want to quarantine the contaminated zone, preventing others from accidentally exposing themselves to mold’s potential health effects. Use plastic sheeting and floor signs to signal that the space is temporarily off-limits.

Take a stiff brush and sweep away as much mold as you can into disposable bags. Vacuums outfitted with HEPA filters can be used for an even deeper clean. Follow this step by scrubbing the area with a non-bleach cleaner and then allowing the carpet to dry. Once your rug has been de-moisturized, run your vacuum over the carpet one more time to rid yourself of any remaining spores.

Anti-fungal coatings can be sprayed to aid in the prevention of mold problems from reappearing. These helpful deterrents can be found at hardware stores or purchased online.

Steam cleaners may likewise be employed to rid carpeting of mold, although the level of success this method achieves varies. If musty odors linger, applying a mixture of vinegar and baking soda is a good strategy for ridding your company of unpleasant smells.

A thorough carpet cleaning is required wherever mold appears. When embarking upon the task, follow these comprehensive steps to thoroughly defeat the problem.

Important Information on FEMA Payments

8/11/2022 (Permalink)

FEMA web site Anything that is not covered by your insurance company could be paid for by FEMA disaster assistance programs

Information on FEMA Payments

If you have recently experienced a flood, you will have a lot of expenses, from finding a remediation company to renting a home. The good news is that anything that is not covered by your insurance company could be paid for by FEMA disaster assistance programs.


Making a Claim
After registering with FEMA, you need to start the claim process for your home in Prescott Valley, AZ. Here are the steps you must take:

  • Contact your insurance company and file a claim
  • Take photos of the damage to your property
  • Meet with your insurance agent
  • Collect documents related to your damaged property
  • Get proof of loss
  • Fill out your application for relief


Average Claim Payments
The amount of relief you receive is based on your individual loss. However, you can expect to receive several thousand dollars from FEMA if you do not have adequate insurance.


Eligibility Information
If you have the ability to acquire temporary housing on your own, you will not be able to receive a place through the program. However, if you cannot afford a hotel or rental property, the relief program can offer you temporary housing. Additionally, if you do not have enough insurance to replace all of your home and personal belongings damaged, you can receive funds through the program.

Waiting Periods
Before you can get paid, you will need to provide adequate documentation of your losses. Once you have turned in your proof of loss and finished your application, your information will be reviewed. This process can take a while and is known as the waiting period.

If you have recently experienced flooding or another natural disaster, you may want to know more about the disaster relief programs offered by the government. If you are eligible for relief and have made a claim, you will likely receive a chunk of money to pay for disaster-related expenses.

Is Mold Covered by Commercial Insurance?

7/23/2022 (Permalink)

Mold damage on wall Mold damage in Prescott Valley, AZ

What Is Covered In Your Commercial Insurance

Mold growth can cause major damage to your Prescott Valley, AZ, business. Understanding how commercial insurance addresses mold is key to protecting your property.

Mold Insurance Coverage
Most commercial policies do not cover mold damage in most circumstances. Many policies include a fungus exclusion, which specifically states that damage is not covered if it is caused by the following:

  • Fungus (including mold and mildew)
  • Bacteria
  • Wet rot
  • Dry rot

Some policies do, however, state that mold damage is covered if it is caused by certain specified events, such as fire or lightning. Make sure that you read and fully understand your policy. Speak with your agent if you have any questions.


Mold Prevention

Because most commercial insurance policies do not cover mold, the best way to protect your business is to prevent the mold from growing in the first place. Mold needs three things to thrive: warmth, food and water. Most indoor locations are sufficiently warm and have multiple food sources available. The presence of moisture is the variable over which business owners have the most control. Keep indoor humidity below 50%. It may be necessary to run dehumidifiers in particularly humid areas of the building. Clean up spills and repair water damage as soon as possible. An experienced restoration service can help ensure the property is fully dry after flooding.

Another tactic for reducing the likelihood of mold growth is minimizing the number of spores present. Mold spores are invisible to the naked eye and present almost everywhere. Air purifiers with HEPA filters can trap a significant number of these spores before they have a chance to colonize. HEPA filters can also be installed in the HVAC unit. If your building has carpet, routine deep cleaning kills the spores that get trapped in the carpet fibers.
Commercial insurance generally does not cover mold damage in commercial buildings. However, understanding your policy and taking steps to prevent fungal growth in the first place are important steps you can take to protect your business.

4 Steps of the Fire Damage Restoration Process

7/14/2022 (Permalink)

Severe kitchen fire Fire damage in a Prescott Valley, AZ home

Fire Damage Restoration Process

If you have recently experienced a fire in your home in Prescott Valley, AZ, you might be at a loss about what to do now that the flames are out. Fire restoration is a serious undertaking. You can make sure the job is done right by hiring damage cleaning experts that follow a proven process.

1. Assessment
The first step in restoration is understanding the task at hand. The restoration company will inspect your home for any issues that were caused by the fire. Professionals inspect not only the immediately affected area but any rooms that might have suffered smoke damage, too. They also look for signs of water damage that resulted from the fire. Afterward, these experts use their findings to create a plan, cost estimate, and timeline for your cleanup process.

2. Property Protection
Depending on the severity of the situation, your home may need further protection. Holes in the roof and walls leave your property open to more problems. If needed, the company will seal and tarp the house to prevent further damage.

3. Cleanup
Cleaning is the most time-consuming step in fire restoration. There are many steps in the cleanup process, including:

  • Removing burned materials
  • Drying and repairing any water damage issues
  • Air filtration and odor removal
  • Inspecting, cleaning and restoring belongings
  • Moving out and storing your property in a safe location

The amount of cleaning needed depends on the situation, but even a small fire can create a lot of mess.

4. Restoration
Repairing your home is the last part of the process. A fire damage restoration company can replace any building materials that your home lost so that it is structurally sound. Remediation professionals can also complete cosmetic restorations such as carpet installation and painting.

Fire restoration is a daunting process. Having a professional to keep you informed along the way can ease your mind while the work is done.

How Aid is Assessed After a Flood

7/7/2022 (Permalink)

Flooded house When your home is flooded as the result of a natural disaster, FEMA can probably help.
How Aid is Assessed After a Flood

When a natural disaster causes widespread destruction, the Federal Emergency Management Agency often steps in to provide assistance and aid to those displaced by the aftermath of the storm. If your home in Yavapai County is damaged by flooding, FEMA may send a housing inspector to assess your property. What follows is a thorough walkthrough that can result in receiving federal assistance for putting your home back together.

Initial Assessment

When inspectors arrive at your home, they document everything that needs to be repaired or replaced. If there is a lot of damage, this could take a while. They make a detailed list of problems, such as:

• Soaked carpet
• Ruined walls
• Damaged cabinets
• Destroyed items, such as furniture

They take pictures of your home and write down the extent of the problem. For example, if is completely soaked through, they include how many square feet of carpet was affected. The more details they can report, the better FEMA is able to assess your need.

Documentation Requirements

One thing that the inspector will need from you is proof that you own the home. This can be problematic if your deed was destroyed by the storm and you don't have a copy on hand. Getting the paperwork from the appropriate office will have to happen before you are eligible to receive any of the aid that the inspector says you qualify for.

Inspector Advice

The government inspector is not the only person who needs to assess your property. Your insurance company will likely send an adjuster, and if there are repairs to be done, you should call a flood remediation company so that repairs can begin as soon as possible.

When your home is flooded as the result of a natural disaster, FEMA can probably help. All that is needed is a thorough inspection and proof that you own the home for the inspector to determine whether or not you qualify for aid.

These 4 Qualifications Are a Must for Your Preferred Vendors

6/17/2022 (Permalink)

IICRC Institute.of Inspection Cleaning and Restoration SERVPRO of Yavapai County is trained according to IICRC standards in fire and water cleanup restoration.

For Your Preferred Vendors, These 4 Qualities Are Required

When you, as an insurance agent in Bagdad, AZ, have a client with damage from a flood or fire, you need a list of qualified professionals who can restore your client's property "Like it never even happened".

SERVPRO's team of professionals has a solid reputation as the undisputed leader in fire and water cleanup and restoration. Here are some reasons they should be a part of your vendor program.

1. Damaged Property Is Restored Quickly

Professionals are fast to arrive on the scene and pretest the area to determine the extent of the damage. They then provide a plan for the most cost-effective way to restore that property. By doing this, they save your insurance company money. They also communicate with you throughout the process using an electronic system. You, the insurance agent can see it as soon as it's entered into the data bank. 

2. Specially Trained Professionals Help Your Client 
Restoration professionals are trained according to IICRC standards in fire and water cleanup restoration. They also receive continuing education in the best cleanup techniques. They have the professional skills you and your clients need. 

3. National Accounts Guidelines Ensure Standards Are Met 

National Accounts Guidelines ensure that background checks are done on every employee. Your clients can be assured of safe, reliable help. Professionals keep detailed records so that completed jobs are filed as proof of work. The staff communicates with you every step of the way.

4. As an Insurance Agent, You Need Qualified Professionals on Hand 

When your client contacts you about damage, rest assured that a team is on hand to get there quickly.
Damage from a fire or flood can be expensive if testing and remediation aren't done quickly. By relying on the help of professionals, your client's home or place of business can be safely restored in a way that saves money for your insurance company.

Flood Risks

6/9/2022 (Permalink)

Destroyed House After Mirror Reflection Of Flood Hurricane Harvey Disaster Area Knowing what kind of flood zone you live in can also be helpful for storage options and emergency preparedness.

Flood Hazards

If you’re in the process of buying a house in Prescott Valley, AZ or you’re looking for a new home owners insurance policy, you might be familiar with what a flood zone is. If you don’t know what they are, you might want to start reading up on them.

Zoning for Floods?

A flood zone is an area in a specific geographical space that the Federal Emergency Management Agency has determined has at least some risk of flooding. There are four primary types of zones, which correlate to the severity or category of excessive water events that can occur in that area.

  • Moderate to Low Risk Areas
  • High Risk Areas
  • High Risk – Coastal Areas
  • Undetermined Risk Areas

How to Find Your Zone

Each area’s zones are depicted on a community's Flood Insurance Rate Map, also known as FIRM, which can be found online at https://www.fema.gov/flood-insurance-rate-map-firm. You can also contact your local municipality or look on their website, most of cities will have zoning information available online. You can try searching for the term “flood elevation certificate” for faster results.

Some people may think that these zones can only be found next to a large body of water or along a river or stream, but that’s not the case. Houses that are nowhere near a body of water can experience a flood if there’s a large rain storm.

Emergency Preparedness

Knowing what kind of flood zone you live in can also be helpful for storage options and emergency preparedness. If you live in a high-risk zone, for example, you probably don’t want to put boxes directly on the floor, and you might want to increase the number of your emergency supplies.

If you weren’t aware that your home is potentially at risk for a flood, and a storm causes water related damage, you should contact a storm damage specialist in your area to determine your best course of action and get the damage repaired as quickly as possible.