BURNSVILLE, MN — Spring is upon us, and that means melting snow and rain water may soon be making its way into your home.
The Better Business Bureau has issued the following advice for homeowners who may be struggling with cleaning up the damage left behind by flooding.
*Make sure your insurance policy covers flood damage – the BBB says most homeowner policies in Minnesota and North Dakota don’t provide flood coverage, which needs to be purchased in advance because there is a 30-day waiting period after you’ve applied and paid the premium before it takes effect.
*Don’t make any permanent changes to your property until you get approval from your insurance provider when repairing damage. The company may not fully reimburse you for repairs made without their approval. You’ll need to document the damage by taking pictures or video of your property.
*Shop around to get at least three different estimates before deciding on a contractor, and also be sure to have estimates broken down the same way. You should watch out for high-pressure sales tactics and people who go door-to-door offering to do work. Always research companies to find reputable contractors.
*Get everything in writing, and demand a written contract from the company or person you end up hiring. The contract should specify the scope of the work to be done, the materials to be used, and the price breakdown of both the work and materials. All documents should be reviewed before signing or making any payments, and include start and end dates. You should also always ask for receipts.
*Ask for licensing – Make sure the contractor has the correct license to do work in your state, and is covered in case something happens while doing work on your property. You should also ask for proof of liability, workers compensation and licensing.