BBB offers advice on preparing for potential flooding and tips on repairs

Severe thunderstorms have passed through multiple parts of Texas this week, and more are expected to hit in the upcoming days.

With the amount of rainfall the last few days, some homes and businesses in Texas are already experiencing flooding conditions. Unfortunately, with more rainfall on the way this coming weekend, others could be affected as well.

Flooding can cause all kinds of damage, particularly mold, which can be a serious health risk. The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) warns that you may have mold in your home if:

Your home smells moldy even if you can’t see it.
Water stains are present.
If you are certain there has been water damage in your home.

It is also important to remember that mold can hide under carpets and flooring, as well as behind wallpaper and drywall. Mold can also form inside walls around pipes, and in roofing materials, so you may need a professional to tell you if you have mold.

Better Business Bureau serving the Heart of Texas has the following tips for those cleaning up or preparing for flood damage:

Research with BBB. Before working with a water damage restoration company or mold remediation business, check their reviews and complaint history on bbb.org. You can also prepare now by searching mold remediation and water restoration businesses that are accredited with BBB at bbb.org. BBB Accredited Businesses must abide by BBB’s 8 Standards for Trust, which including tell the truth, advertise honestly and honor promises.
Work with your insurance company. If your home, business or vehicle was damaged by flooding, contact your insurance company and ask about policy coverage and how to initiate the claim process. Document the damage by taking as many photographs as possible. Your insurance company can also recommend reliable water damage restoration businesses.
Try to prevent further damage. Dry out and disinfect impacted areas to help prevent mold and run fans and dehumidifiers. Consult an expert to see if rugs and carpets can be salvaged.
Be wary of door-to-door solicitors. Obtain a contract that specifies the work to be done, the price breakdown for labor and materials and an agreed upon timeline. Never feel pressured into signing on the spot. Avoid paying with cash for the entire job up front.
Get at least three bids. Get at least three estimates for the services you need from different companies so you can compare prices and get the best deal.
Ask for references. Make sure the business has extensive experience by asking for a list of references. It’s also a good idea to ask friends and family if they have recommendations.
Verify licensing. Confirm that the company you hire is licensed for the type of work they’ll be doing in your home. For example, if they’ll be doing contractor work like tearing out cabinets or mold assessment and remediation, you can go to tdlr.texas.gov to verify their license.

For more information, go to bbb.org.

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