Among other natural disasters, floods are the most devastating and damaging, causing immeasurable calamities throughout history. Flood damage is usually caused by storm surges, tsunami waves, or excessive rain. Regardless of the reason, the potential risks caused by floods are always progressive and bad for your health.
According to experts, intense flooding is responsible for thousands of deaths and billions of dollars’ worth of property damage around the world every year. Hence, the most fatal and catastrophic natural disaster.
Moreover, the process of restoring your home is challenging, time-consuming, and costly. But with home redecoration, you can get your house back, improve your quality of life, and make the changes you want to your humble abode.
However, you might need to ensure that your home is safe before making any changes. If everything is okay, you can start redecorating your home. In addition, here are the following tips that will help you remodel your home after the flood:
1. Find A Cleaning Professional
Before remodeling, you would need to make sure that your home is safe and free from floodwater. Leaving it alone to dry promotes the growth of microorganisms such as mold and bacteria, which can cause various diseases in your family. To prevent this, you need a professional to clean and sanitize your home.
If you’re looking for cleanup and restoration services, you can check your local area, or you may visit this website instead. In addition, here are the benefits of hiring cleaning experts to restore the beauty of your home:
- Careful Damage Assessment
Damage assessment is a crucial step that will help them create an efficient and effective course of action based on the degree of property damage.
Expert cleaners will conduct a thorough check to determine possible hazards around your home, including wet sockets, exposed wires, etc. They’ll assess the scope of damage and the areas affected by the flood.
Professional restoration services use advanced tools and equipment to ensure that all nooks and crannies are clean and water-free. They use powerful vacuums and water pumps to quickly extract large volumes of water, preventing the growth of mold and bacteria and reducing the risks of getting diseases.
Expert cleanup services use specialized tools to ensure that hard-to-reach areas are dry and water-free. If you’re worried about the safety of these methods, don’t worry because all of them are science-based. Their only goal is to extract the remaining water from all surfaces and make them completely dry, preventing warps and possible mold growth.
- Effective Sanitation Processes
Professional cleaning services don’t only clean and extract water from your home, but they also sanitize every corner, ensuring the safety of your home. They also use several specialized tools to make this work, including heavy-duty air scrubbers and fogging equipment.
Furthermore, aside from removing excess water, these professionals will also cover other necessary cases. These include curing septic tanks, sanitizing toilets and baths, and identifying areas prone to condensation.
2. Call Your Insurance Company
You’ll probably be worried about the costs and expenses you’ll have to shoulder due to flooding. In this case, you might need to call your insurance company right away, within 24 hours after the flood. And if your insurance agent can’t reply immediately, you should proceed to the headquarters as soon as possible. They can provide additional support and start the process of getting your claims processed.
When getting insurance claims, make sure that your copy of the insurance policy is kept in a waterproof storage area. However, if it’s still dangerous to return to your home, you can ask your insurance company to provide you with a new copy. When you get your hands on it, carefully read the details, especially the steps you must take in the event of an emergency.
Also, your claims will depend on what your policy covers. So, you can ask your insurance agent to help you determine the cause and coverage of your claim. You can also inquire with your agent if your home is located in a land-declared disaster area. If so, you may be able to receive additional financial help.
Lastly, when filing your claim, make sure to document all the damage that happened to your home. You can take pictures of them and secure them to make sure you’re getting appropriate claims.
3. Plan Your Budget
When it comes to natural disasters like flooding, it’s crucial to create a budget for any home renovation project. Redecorating your home after a flood may be expensive, especially when it comes to addressing basic home improvements. However, your budget will depend on the extent of the damage. Therefore, it’s advisable to plan every detail of your allocations carefully.
With that said, you might need to investigate properly and establish a fair and reasonable budget. Be realistic when creating a budget for your home renovation by anticipating the damage you have to address so that you won’t have any problems after.
You can also plan ahead of the things you should replace with more durable ones. These will save you more money in the long run, especially when there’s constant flooding in your area every year.
4. Get Your Home Tested For Mold Growth
Molds are one of the dangers to your home, especially after a flood. They usually grow in damp places, such as shower curtains, laundry rooms, basement flooring, and kitchen drains. If these are left ignored, possible diseases and sicknesses can affect your family. You may experience irritations to your eyes, nose, throat, skin, or allergic reactions.
It would be best to test your home for the presence of mold because there may be people in your household who are most likely at risk of getting sick because of mold growth. These are infants, the elderly, children, people with compromised immune systems, and people with lung problems.
Fortunately, the process for testing and getting rid of them is spot-on and straightforward. Here are the steps you can take:
- Create a solution by mixing one part of bleach with 16 parts of water.
- Dab the solution on areas susceptible to mold growth.
- Check the reaction produced. If it whitens, it is most likely to be mold.
- Puncture the site and check if mildew has occurred and rot has begun.
- Wear disposable suits and respirators before removing the molds.
- Use an antimicrobial spray as you remove objects infested with mold, such as carpets.
- Wash the area with soap and water. Soap has surfactants that are effective when dealing with mold.
Furthermore, make sure that you dispose of every object you use during mold removal to prevent it from returning quickly.
5. Check Your Floors
One of the most damaged parts during flooding is the floor, and all that was damaged, regardless of its type, should be removed, including the subfloor.
Here are the effects flooding can have on your flooring and why you need to replace it and install a new one:
- Hardwoods and laminates are good at absorbing water, making them swell and warp. They also store moisture, one of the key requirements for microbial growth.
- Carpets are excellent water absorbers. You might need to replace them with new ones. However, you can still clean and let them dry if you want to save on your budget.
But if your carpets are made of natural and synthetic fibers, you need to remove them as they encourage mold growth by providing them with food. Also, if the subfloor underneath your carpets is wood, it’s most likely to get soaked in water. So, you can remove them as well.
- Tiles don’t absorb water, but you have to get rid of them, especially if they’re attached to a wood subfloor below them.
The wet wood subfloors won’t be able to dry up as soon as possible if there’s tile on top of them. This will promote mold growth, which you want to avoid. So, remove your tiles and the subflooring and replace them with new ones.
These are the flooring basics you need to know when your home is attacked by floods. Remember the basic principle: once they are damaged, get rid of them.
6. Make Your Basement Look Good
When redecorating after the flood, you might need to check all the areas of your basement and assess their condition. Inspect the pipelines for leakages, wet drywall, soaked flooring, etc. If these are present, remove them immediately to prevent microbial growth and make sure every area of your basement is completely dry.
After removing the problems, you should try applying systems that prevent water damage to your basement. Experts suggest installing waterproof pumps, French drains, and drainage flooring. These simple installations will help you get rid of the water the next time a flood attacks your home.
Another tip is that you can place a vapor barrier on your walls to prevent moisture penetration and a ventilation system to ensure proper airflow and humidity.
If you’re unsure of the necessary steps you need to take, you can ask professional builders and remodelers to do it for you. However, if it’s not included in your budget, you may skip this part and do it yourself.
7. Enhance Your Interior Walls
After the flood, check your walls and analyze what you need to do with their damage. Unlike flooring, you cannot easily remove or replace them since they are part of your home’s frame.
The first thing you need to do is wash and deodorize your interior panels and replace them with water-resistant ones. When it comes to insulation, you must avoid anything excellent at absorbing water, such as sponges. Instead, you may opt for fiberglass insulation. However, you may be required to use polystyrene foam boards for your insulation.
In addition, you can improve your walls with cement boards. The good thing about them is that they don’t absorb water, reducing the chances of microbial growth. Also, you might want to use polyvinyl chloride walling instead of wood. This will ensure that your wall will remain dry even if your carpet is soaked in floodwater.
After all of the necessary preparations and replacements, the last thing you need to do is coat them with weatherproof paint. Following these simple tips will help you prevent mold growth whenever the time comes.
8. Repair Outside Panels And Windows
After flooding, inspect the outside framing of your home, including all walled areas and your windows. Usually, exteriors suffer more damage than interiors because of other environmental factors. These include extreme flash floods, wind-carried sharp debris, tree limbs, etc.
If you’re living in a storm-prone area, you should be selective in your choices when it comes to securing the durability of your outside panels. In that case, you’ll need to use stormproof panels and windows to reduce the cost of repetitive expenses. You’ll notice that you’re saving more by not using cheap and low-quality home materials.
Moreover, you can use solid bricks for your exterior. Not only do they look good, but they’re also the most durable and robust material that can withstand wind and water damage. If you don’t want to install bricks, you may use stucco instead.
9. Improve Your Kitchen And Bath
Kitchens and baths are the most prone to damage among other parts of your home because the drainage and plumbing fixtures installed on them may get destroyed. But take a look at the brighter side of this event. This is the perfect time to redecorate your kitchen and bath.
However, remodeling these areas usually requires the help of professionals to make sure that every fixture, water line, and gas line will be installed appropriately. You may need to invest in more durable appliances that can withstand the destructive abilities of floods.
When redecorating, you might want to make your kitchen and bath look more aesthetic by adding a backsplash and replacing your countertops with granite. These will not only make these areas pleasing, but they’ll also increase your house value, especially if you plan to sell your home someday.
Floods inflict irreversible damage to properties. Flooding doesn’t only happen during stormy climates, but it can also occur when the river overflows, dam breaks, snow melts, etc.
Since floods can occur at any time, it would be best to take preventive measures that will help you reduce the cost of repairing and restoring your home. Moreover, dealing with the aftermath brought by flooding has never been easy, especially if it has damaged your home to the point where buying a new one has become an option.
You can follow some of the tips presented above that explain how you can avoid serious damage to your home.
Marvin Kelly is a professional content creator. He has been writing home improvement articles for more than 13 years. Marvin shares his expertise by writing blogs online. During his free time, he enjoys photography, landscaping, and planting.