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After Hurricane Harvey…What To Do (Whether You Flooded or Not!)

Today marks 24 days since we received our first flood claim on Saturday, August 26, 2017 at 5:45am.  Since that time, like you, we haven’t stopped.  We are continuing to take claims, help neighbors and collect & distribute supplies and money.  We will continue to post flood relief recipients on our Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/AngelaJohnsonInsurance/

FLOOD ZONE FACTS

I know this is a difficult time for all of coastal Texas.  Our hearts go out to all the victims of Hurricane Harvey.  We also have a professional obligation to try to straighten out misinformation.

One such myth is that Flood Zone X isn’t a flood zone.  All of Houston and surrounding areas are in a flood zone.  Even Flood Zone X is a flood zone.  Flood Zone X only means a home has a 1 in 500 chance of flooding each year.

BOTTOM LINE

Homeowners and Renter’s: Call or text us at 281-648-2828 to start your flood insurance policy today

DANGER: WATCH OUT FOR PREVIOUS FLOOD DAMAGE WHEN PURCHASING A CAR

If a car had Comprehensive coverage and flooded, the title will show up as having a Flooded, Salvaged or Rebuilt title.  However, for older cars that flooded but didn’t have Comprehensive insurance

Photo credit: Ken McBee via Facebook. Over 500,000 cars are flooded. This is an aerial shot of the Baytown racetrack where many have been taken.

coverage, that flag won’t necessarily appear.  Please be vigilant when buying cars, now and in the years to come as flooded cars and parts enter the market.

Here are some articles with good tips and things to consider:

http://auto.howstuffworks.com/under-the-hood/salvage-used-junkyard-parts/10-ways-to-spot-flood-damaged-car.htm

http://www.carparts.com/nextcar/flooddamagedcars.htm

http://www.nbcnews.com/id/9241839/ns/business-autos/t/storm-cars-could-take-consumers-ride/#.Wb6BtLKGPX4

BOTTOM LINE

For the foreseeable future, it’s a good idea to have a mechanic inspect any used vehicle for previous flood damage before you buy it.  We will also have to either inspect or have a current CarFax report for vehicles we insure. Thank you in advance for your patience.

WATCH OUT HOW MUCH YOU PAY FOR HOME REPAIRS

When getting estimates for repairs, make sure they are reasonable.  Every dollar you spend on one item takes away from money you have to spend on something else.  I’ve heard of one flood victim who was quoted $20,000 to remove fallen trees and trim a few more.  They got a second opinion and had a quality job done for the fair price of $8,000.

BOTTOM LINE

Cheaper is NOT always better, but just make sure the quotes you receive are reasonable.

Additionally, any contractor working on your home should be licensed and insured.  Check their credentials, online reviews and ask to see their insurance policy before you let them begin any work on your home.

RECEIPTS, INVOICES, PERMITS AND INSPECTIONS

Keep all receipts and paid invoices.  You will need these for the adjuster as well as to prove that repairs have been completed.  Start a file and plan to keep proof of repairs for at least 3 years.

Permits are required for all flood repair work whether you do the work yourself or have a professional contractor.

If outlets were under water, have an electrician inspect the electrical system. If outlets need to be replaced, an electrical permit will be required.

City inspectors will do a frame inspection before sheetrock is replaced and a final inspection once work is complete in order to issue a Certificate of Occupancy.

BOTTOM LINE

Be sure to check with your city for specific permit and inspection requirements and keep all paid receipts and invoices.

CONTACT YOUR MORTGAGE COMPANY AND ANY OTHER CREDITORS FOR A LOAN FORBEARANCE

Many creditors are offering anywhere from 1-6 months of loan forbearance to those impacted by Hurricane Harvey.  If you need to free up some money during the rebuild process, be sure to apply for these extensions.  Your loan isn’t forgiven during the time you don’t pay, but the amount is moved to the end of your loan and can help your cash flow right now.

FEMA AND SBA TOWN HALL MEETINGS

Friendswood:
Monday, Sept. 18, 6 to 9 p.m.
Friendswood Junior High School
1000 Madison Parkway Friendswood, TX 77546

League City:
Tuesday, Sept. 19, 6 to 9 p.m.
Walter Hall Park
807 Highway 3 N League City, TX 77573

Dickinson:
Monday, Sept. 25, 6 to 9 p.m.
Dickinson High School Auditorium
3800 Baker Drive Dickinson, TX

Galveston County and cities are committed and dedicated to assisting you with navigating the road to recovery in the wake of devastation left by Hurricane Harvey. We will have FEMA and SBA (Small Business Administration) representatives giving a presentation outlining what Disaster Assistance programs are available to residents in Galveston County. There is going to be a thorough question and answer session following their presentation; answering any and all questions that you may have. There will also be tables setup with literature and available one-on-one discussions that fit your individual situation.

If you have not already done so, apply for FEMA assistance at www.disasterassistance.gov. Note: In order to qualify for SBA programs, you must first register with FEMA.
SBA offers very low interest loans to businesses, homeowners, renters and non-profits like churches and universities.

Please Like & Share This Important Post Immediately To Help People Recover From This Disaster. Thank you and God Bless.

Angela Johnson and Team

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