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Why Insurance Companies Like Working with SERVPRO

5/13/2020 (Permalink)

Why Insurance Companies Like Working With SERVPRO

As an insurance adjuster, you work in a constant state of balance between the needs of your clients and the needs of your company. When your client’s home in Germantown, TN is damaged by a storm or fire, you are likely the first call the homeowner will make. You also have an obligation to your company to get as good a deal as possible. A vendor such as SERVPRO of Germantown/Collierville can help you satisfy both parties.

Keeping You Informed

The Claims Information Center is designed to keep you updated on every detail of the work being done on your client’s home. The job file includes:

  • Initial damage assessment
  • Response time
  • Itemized list of losses
  • Digital photos of damage
  • Detailed cost estimate

While you want to complete your own walkthrough of the property as part of your responsibility as the insurance adjuster, the records from the CIC can be a valuable resource when your client files the claim. Electronic records make it easy to keep you informed throughout the process.

Keeping Communication Open

The 24-hour emergency call center makes it possible for you and your client to get the service and answers you need no matter what time of day it is. As soon as the service request comes into the call center, dispatchers notify local franchises to meet your client and start the restoration process.

Keeping Costs Low

Certified restoration specialists are trained to assess every situation thoroughly and restore whatever they can. By pretesting each item that is affected by the disaster, they can determine what can be salvaged. The fewer items that end up on the replacement list on the insurance claim, the lower your costs will be. The goal is to save as many items as possible.

SERVPRO of Germantown/Collierville is committed to working with the insurance adjuster to get the job done right. Choosing specialists who see the big picture is good for both your client and your company.

How Do I Get Rid of the Mildew on My Plants?

5/13/2020 (Permalink)

Whether flowering or fruit-bearing, bushy or prickly, plants can clear the air and generally bring personality to our homes. But when plant mildew takes hold, you may worry your plant’s days may be numbered. Fortunately, getting mildew doesn’t have to spell the end for your plant. With a little effort and some things you can likely found around your Germantown, TN, home, you can rid your plants of mildew in no time.

About Powdery Mildew

One of the most common fungi to show up on plants is called powdery mildew. It can look a bit like a fine powder you can simply dust off. But it comes back again and again, coating leaves and giving your plant a dull look. Powdery mildew often:

  • Looks like white or gray spots
  • Prefers warm, dry environments
  • Shows up when plant foliage is dry

While mildew growth won’t immediately kill your plant, it’s a good idea to clear it before it gets out of hand and becomes a real threat

Cleaning Powdery Mildew

Common grocery store items are your first weapon against plant mildew. Baking soda mixed with liquid soap and water sprayed on plants can neutralize mildew and be a preventative for new mildew formation while spraying plain mouthwash on leaves can kill mildew spores. Milk offers a surprising antiseptic effect on powdery mildew. Mix one part to three parts of water and rub on leaves to relieve your plants from fungal effects.

Watering your plants more is another easy solution for powdery mildew, erasing the dry environment the fungus loves.

Plant mildew is an unsightly menace that, if left alone, can eventually leach nutrients from your plants and cause them to wither. Look in your cabinet for tools to eradicate it or, in serious cases, talk to a mold specialist to learn about fungicides and other options to keep your plants at their beautiful best.

Give SERVPRO of Germantown/Collierville a call at (901) 755-3705 with your mold and mildew questions.

A Quick Guide to Commercial Storm Insurance

5/13/2020 (Permalink)

As a business owner in Collierville, TN , insuring your property is a no-brainer. However, not all people know specifically how storm insurance works or what it covers. SERVPRO of Germantown/Collierville is here to help.  Here are some brief tips to help you understand this often-misunderstood type of insurance coverage.

Categories of Coverage

Not all storms, or deductibles, are created equal. The best way to understand your specific coverage is to read your commercial insurance policy or speak with the agent. Generally, insurance policies reference these three categories:

  •  Windstorm – This includes any damage to the property resulting from wind or hail that does not fall into one of the other categories.
  • Hurricane – The definition of a hurricane differs by state and storm insurance company. Some define it by wind speed; others consider the amount of time between the National Weather Service (NWS) announcement and the time of the damage.
  • Named Storm – When a tropical storm is severe and widespread, the NWS names it. For some insurance coverage, this may fall into the hurricane category.

Differences in Deductibles 

When you first buy property insurance, you consider your deductible. This is the amount of money that you, the business owner, must pay out of pocket prior to receiving insurance funds. When the damage is the result of a natural disaster, however, people are often surprised that the same deductible does not apply. Instead of a standard amount of money, coverage is a percentage of the total cost for storm restoration professionals to mitigate and repair the damage. A typical rate is between one and five percent.

Whether severe winds in Collierville, TN , knocks a tree into your commercial building or a hurricane causes significant destruction, understanding storm insurance is critical to getting your business up and running again. When the unexpected happens, take comfort in the notion that your insurance agent and SERVPRO of Germantown/Collierville are Here to Help.  Give us a call at (901) 755-3705 with your storm damage questions.

How to Tell When Your Dryer Vent Needs Cleaning

5/13/2020 (Permalink)

Dryer Vent The last thing you want is a lint fire in your home

4 Steps To Prevent A Dryer Fire

If you own a home in Collierville, TN , fire safety is probably something you think about often. You've probably installed smoke detectors and have an extinguisher handy in case of a mishap. But have you taken a look at the vent on your dryer recently? Every year, thousands of homes are damaged due to the occurrence of a lint fire. Luckily, it's easy to tell when it's time to clean out your dryer vent. So, what should you look for in order to prevent a dryer fire?  SERVPRO of Germantown/Collierville is here with some tips to help.

1. There's a Burning Odor

A good indication that the vent needs cleaning is a burning smell. If lint is clogging up the drum casing, exhaust tube or trap, you could easily have a lint fire. When there's a burning odor coming from the dryer, turn it off and call a professional to service it.

2. Clothes and Dryer Are Both Very Hot

If the dryer is extremely warm when you touch the outside and your clothes feel really hot when you remove them, it's probably a blocked vent. When the vent is blocked, the hot air can't escape from the dryer.

3. Clothes Are Taking Forever to Dry

With a blocked vent, clothes might take up to three times as long as normal to get dry. When you put your clothes in for a regular cycle, you might find that they're still damp when you take them out. When the vent is blocked, it can't allow moisture to be released from the dryer.

4. Your Dryer Hasn't Been Inspected for a While

A vent cleaning professional should take a look at your dryer at least once a year. While you can certainly clean out the vent by yourself, hiring a professional will ensure that the job is done right, since they will have the right equipment to do a thorough cleaning and make sure the dryer in a safe condition for use.

The last thing you want is a lint fire in your home. By looking out for the obvious signs, you can be sure to prevent it from happening. 

Call SERVPRO of Germantown/Collierville at (901) 755-3705 with questions.

3 Tips for Eliminating Mold in the Shower

5/13/2020 (Permalink)

Eliminating Mold in the Shower

Keeping your Germantown, TN, home clean is probably a priority for you, even if you juggle other responsibilities. However, some household chores can be more challenging than others, such as fighting shower mold. Humidity and moisture give this fungus a prime environment in which to grow, and it can be difficult to scrub away once it takes hold. If you are currently battling this issue, there are a few strategies that SERVPRO of Germantown/Collierville would like to share in order to help you win the war on mold. 

1. Try Baking Soda 

While there are some commercial cleansers available that are designed to fight mold, many have strong odors and may not be gentle on your shower tiles. If you want to use a product that is odor-free and simple to use, mix some fresh baking soda with water until it forms a paste. You can also add a few drops of your favorite essential oil to create a pleasant scent. Spread the paste on moldy areas, let it sit a few moments, and then scrub it away. Rinse the area well afterward to ensure all the fungus is gone. 

2. Use Vinegar 

Using vinegar to clean away shower mold can be useful in two ways. First, it contains a level of acidity that inhibits further growth and second, vinegar can eliminate the unpleasant, musty odor caused by mycotoxins, which are released by mold as it eats and grows. Add some undiluted vinegar to a spray bottle, coat the shower tiles, then rinse and dry them after about an hour. 

3. Call In Professional Help 

Some types of fungi, such as black mold, can be difficult to eliminate on your own. Calling in a mold removal and remediation service may be the best approach if you are dealing with stubborn or reoccurring mold issues, as knowledgeable technicians have the know-how and equipment to banish stubborn fungi for good. 

Battling shower mold in your Germantown, TN, home’s bathroom can be a challenge. However, knowing which household items are effective against different types of fungi may help you eradicate them forever.  Give SERVPRO of Germantown/Collierville a call at (901) 755-3705 for additional help with getting rid of mold.

How To Keep Your Pipes from Freezing

5/13/2020 (Permalink)

How To Keep Your Pipes from Freezing

As the weather gets colder, the possibility of frozen pipes in your Collierville, TN, home becomes a real concern. If you have a pipe freeze, the water inside can expand and the pipe can burst. Luckily, if you follow the steps SERVPRO of Germantown/Collierville has outlined below, you have a good chance of preventing this problem from ever happening. 

1. Insulate

Any pipes in unheated places, like basements and crawlspaces, should be wrapped in insulation such as fiberglass or foam rubber sleeves. Use as much insulation as you can.

2. Maintain a Stable Temperature

Keeping the temperature the same all the time also helps prevent frozen pipes. Having the thermostat set to at least 55 degrees Fahrenheit will not only help keep the pipes from freezing, but it will also prevent contraction and expansion, which can weaken pipes and cause them to leak.

3. Keeps Faucets Running

Let your faucets run at a slow drip when the weather gets cold. This can prevent pipes from freezing by making sure that pressure doesn't build up inside. Even if the water freezes, it won't be able to cause the pipe to burst.

4. Close Valves, Open Valves

Any valves that supply water to the outside should be closed. Any outside valves should be opened to allow any water that's inside to flow out.

5. If a Frozen Pipe Is Found

If you turn on the faucet during a cold snap and hardly any water comes out, a pipe has probably frozen. Check along the exterior wall to find the pipe, or look to see where the water line comes through the foundation to enter the house. Once the problem area is located, use a heating pad or a hair dryer to warm up the pipe, allowing the water to run while you do it.

If you've already had frozen pipes burst and the water has caused damage to your home, you may want to contact SERVPRO of Germantown/Collierville at (901) 755-3705 to take care of the repairs. Hopefully, this hasn't happened yet, and by following the tips laid out in this article, you won't ever have to make that call.

Why Secure a Building After a Fire?

5/13/2020 (Permalink)

Why Secure a Building After a Fire?

A building with fire damage may not seem like a desirable location, but there are several factors that can attract looters, trespassers, or vandals. Here are a few reasons that SERVPRO of Germantown/Collierville has put together about why a building owner or manager should secure the premises after a fire has been extinguished.

To Prevent Further Damage

Every person that enters a building damaged by fire is likely to make damage worse. Several factors may include:

  • Admitting debris
  • Admitting water
  • Grinding soot into surfaces

Boarding up holes in doors and windows and using tarps to cover a damaged roof are the best ways to prevent these types of damage. A building owner may also want to consider installing security fencing until restoration is complete.

To Limit Liability

A property owner may be liable if anyone, including a third-party, sustains an injury on the location of a fire. Security measures can make it more difficult for trespassers to get into a structure that has fire damage and risk becoming injured.

To Discourage Looting

A number of items in a fire-damaged property may be desirable to looters. Even after many contents and parts of a structure have become damaged or destroyed, a business may retain some elements, such as:

  • Inventory
  • Fixtures
  • Wiring

Looting may still pose a risk regardless of whether building materials, fixtures, or other contents are intact or in need of being disposed of and replaced. A board-up, combined with security fencing, can help to limit losses and damage caused by trespassing.

Securing a building demonstrates an owner's desire to mitigate damage. Most insurers will seek evidence that mitigation is taking place. Securing a location with fire damage is one of the best ways to indicate an intention to restore the building for functional use as soon as possible. Start by contacting SERVPRO of Germantown/Collierville at (901) 755-3705 due to our specialization in fire cleanup, security, and protection from the elements in Germantown, TN.

Water Damage: How Business Insurance Can Help

5/13/2020 (Permalink)

Commercial property owners want to cut costs and improve profits. However, when it comes to insurance, you should rethink that stance. We at SERVPRO of Germantown/Collierville have found that water damage is among the most common issues businesses face, and without appropriate insurance coverage, the restoration expense is coming out of the owner’s pocket or the profits of the company. While it is true that business insurance does not cover every type of water issue, it does include many.

1. Leaking

When you have old pipes, it is possible to end up with several leaks. Unfortunately, because of the nature of plumbing, these leaks may go undetected for weeks or even months, leading to water stained ceilings, crumbling drywall and even structural damage. Most insurance policies will cover leaky pipes, especially if you have your building regularly inspected. 

2. Cracks

Similar to leaks, cracks can cause the same types of water damage, but it may be on a grander scale. Cracks, or splits, in the pipe usually create more damage because the openings in the pipes are larger. As with leaks, if you can prove that you did not know about the damage early on, then your insurer should be willing to cover the cost.

3. Freezing

Colder months can wreak havoc on a business, especially those operating out of warehouse facilities and garages. The reason for the issue is that warehouses and garages have pipes that are exposed to severe temperature fluctuations. If pipes freeze, then the excess pressure can lead to broken pipes. Thankfully, this too is covered by a typical business policy. However, you must prove that you try to maintain a steady temperature at your property throughout the year.

4. Breaks

Sudden breaks should also be covered. In addition to the pipe repair, the water cleanup will likely be included as well. Your insurer may require estimates from several emergency remediation specialists in the Germantown, TN, area before funding the project. Give SERVPRO of Germantown/Collierville a call at (901) 755-3705 to schedule an estimate.

While it is understandable that business owners want to cut costs, insurance is likely not the area to save money. Water damage can account for thousands in restoration costs alone, which is why business insurance is so necessary.

Is your Commercial Building Ready for Emergencies?

5/13/2020 (Permalink)

ERP The ERP Application Overview

Emergency Ready Profile by SERVPRO

The need to be prepared for disasters is very important, especially for facility mangers and business owners.  SERVPRO of Germantown/Collierville is here to help. A disaster can strike at any time for a business. It could be just a broken pipe or utility room fire, or maybe an earthquake and flood. Whatever the case it is important to be prepared.

The Emergency Ready Profile from SERVPRO is a mobile application to help a home or business be prepared for a disaster. The highlight of the application is the function of taking pictures of key shutoff locations and adding a description of where they are located under a profile. The profile can then be shared with other staff.

Visit https://ready.SERVPRO.com/ to download the application for iTunes or Android, or contact SERVPRO of Germantown/Collierville at (901) 755-3705 for additional information.

How to Recover Your Home after Flood Damage

5/13/2020 (Permalink)

When floods cause havoc in your home, there are some recommended immediate practices to reclaim your property. Whether the flood damage results from ground water, leaky and water in home, or rain water, you will need a professional water cleanup fast. You surely do not want flood water in your business.  In any case, SERVPRO of Germantown/Collierville is here to help.

Water Cleanup and Mitigation

As per the guidelines issued by the Federal Emergency Management Agency, home and commercial premises owners should inspect their buildings for the signs of structural damage immediately after a serious flooding. With the help of a qualified water damage and mitigation inspector, you need do a water cleanup and to check for cracked or loose foundations, cracked walls, fractured floors, holes on floors, or wobbly warping.

You should consult the utility companies to inspect the water in home, electric, gas and sewer lines. According to Dr. Maurice A. Ramirez in “The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Disaster Preparedness”, a combination of water in business, flood water, and electricity mean disaster.

Your Safety

Before entering the flooded home, wear protective clothing, dusk mask, gloves, and a hard headgear. Do not get into the flooded building unless you are sure that the structural integrity is intact. Never risk your life when flood water in home fills the places all over.

Assessing the Water Damage

If flood water fills your home, the type of water cleanup and repairs required depend on the extent of damage. First check how deep the water is and how far it has soaked the household items and the internal structures. A resistance meter is always ideals in measuring the moisture levels. Sometimes, the person assessing the floods may drill exploratory holes and slot in a humidity probe gadget.

There is apparent flood damage while other damages may require some special water cleanup and inspection. Your unwanted water in home requires drying and an assessment of these damages:

  • Wet plaster, wallboard, insulation or paneling
  • Distorted warping and floor boards due to flood damage
  • Serious wood rot in the lumber structures
  • Termite damage for termites infest wet wood
  • Weak home foundation or an eroded ground surrounding the home
  • Roof damage in form cracked or missing shingles, faulty flashing or holes

Some further checking may include the walls and ceilings for any kind of discoloration. Also observe the premises for any signs of textured growth, mostly black or green, musty smells, or foul odors and do thorough dying.

A reputable water in business company can assist to ascertain the flood damage to the important installations. The following equipment will need drying and cleaning:

  • The air ducts
  • Heating and air conditioning
  • Sewage system
  • Electrical systems

Call SERVPRO of Germantown/Collierville at (901) 755-3705 for any needs regarding water and flood damage.