How to handle water damage in your home

Tubes of bursts, broken washers and bad weather are all guilty of causing water damage in your home. Not only does water destroy furniture and floors, unless it is removed immediately and properly, it can also cause fungi and bacteria to grow and create more damage to the walls, ceilings, floors and the interior structure of your home.


  1. Disconnect water at the source of the leak if water damage is caused by a broken appliance or on the home page. It may be necessary to turn off the water at the main source, which is generally outside or in the basement.
  2. Call your insurance agent as soon as the damage is discovered. Even if losses or damages occur at night, most insurance companies have a 24 hour emergency number available to meet your most immediate needs, such as stagnant water disposal. Follow explicit instructions from the company not to invalidate your claim.
  3. Move dry furniture and valuables to the safe areas of your home.
  4. Remove water with a wet vacuum cleaner if it is not dangerous to do so and if a professional water company is not in your way, and if the insurance company tells you that it is allowed to do so. Minimize the causes of water damage by removing it as soon as possible.
  5. Wet the carpet with a carpet knife and place where mold does not have opportunity to grow or transfer to other surfaces of the home.
  6. Remove damp objects and place them in a dry area in your garage or in an exterior covered area for later disposal cleaning or garbage. Remove any items from boxes to save, if possible.
  7. Small discard, destroyed items after taking a written inventory and photographs of damages. Later, retrieve the original receipts or manufacturer’s warranties for your insurance claim. Do not dispose of high dollar items such as furniture, antiques or electronics until authorized by your insurance company.
  8. Remove wet sockets and kick plates by pulling away from the wall with a lever.
  9. Cut away any wet plaster or panels, at least 12 inches of cut beyond the wet places so that mold has no chance to grow. Be careful not to cut through cables or pipes inside the walls.
  10. Remove and discard affected insulation.

Remove and discard all wet roof materials.

  • DISINFECT all floors and surfaces by rubbing them with a suitable surface antibacterial cleaning solution and sponge down.
  • AIM fans on wet walls and surfaces to help remove all moisture from your home. If the weather is mild, it helps the drying process by opening windows.
  • Clean furniture and personal belongings once authorized by your insurance agent. Antiques, valuables or heirlooms, consult a professional in the correct way to clean or restore the item.
  • Arrange for home repairs once they are approved by your insurance company.