Recent Posts

Why To Invest In a Restoration Franchise

7/4/2022 (Permalink)

liftgate open of a box truck open loaded with personal items SERVPRO of Stillwater, Oakdale, and Mahtomedi is Here to Help!

Advantages Of Opening a SERVPRO Franchise

It is an unfortunate fact that disasters continue to occur regardless of market conditions. As a result, the restoration industry keeps rolling even as other sectors of the economy slow down. Homeowners need habitable residences and commercial property owners need to maintain properties that can attract and retain tenants. Learn more about the advantages of opening a SERVPRO franchise near Bay Port, MN.

There Is Consistent Demand for Services

Rates of fire, water and storm disasters remain relatively consistent year-over-year. Here are several statistics to give a sense of the size of this market:

  • The U.S. Fire Administration reports over 1 million fires every year
  • The National Flood Insurance Program has over 5 million policies in force
  • The National Oceanic and Atmospheric
  • The administration reports an average of 1,000 tornadoes per year

These metrics indicate steady demand for damage restoration from fires, flooding and storm damage across the United States. Preferred Vendors in a major restoration company are most likely to be called on during disaster recovery.

Restoration Firms Are Local Businesses

Opening a locally owned SERVPRO franchise is a good way to engage in the local economy with the backing of a large national company. Owners, operators and employees help out with disaster response and recovery close to home and can rely on an extensive network for support.

Franchises Can Join a Large Network

Over 1,700 franchise locations in North America are affiliated with SERVPRO. Membership in this corporate restoration network can be helpful when it comes to responding to large losses or making it easier for owners and employees to get certified through the Institute of Inspection, Cleaning and Restoration Certification programs.
Opening a restoration company is a smart decision, but any business without a corporate network is less protected than a franchise in a large family. SERVPRO franchise owners have access to the resources they need to compete and succeed.

The Necessity of a Flood Cut

6/24/2022 (Permalink)

Flood cut performed on drywall A flood cut can help a remediation team salvage and protect a property.

The Importance of a Flood Cut

Storms can cause flooding in residential areas, resulting in significant devastation. Restoring a house to its beauty can take time, and it will often require the further demolition of specific elements according to water remediation services in Bay Port, MN. The demolition will typically require a flood cut, which is a cut made into a wall about 12 inches above the flood line. The flood cut serves at least four purposes.

1. Eliminate Water Damage
Primarily, the flood cut is the standard approach to tear out. A remediation service will cut to a line where the surface and substructures are most likely dry and remove anything below that line, down to the studs. Removing the materials helps reduce the risks of further water damage.

2. Reduce Risks of Mold
Flooding and mold growth can go hand in hand. Mold can begin to grow within 24 to 48 hours of a flood. Using a flood cut, the remediation service can see if mold has started and potentially eliminate it before it spreads to dryer areas.

3. Restrict Contamination
The main reason to perform a flood cut is to find an area beneath the wall's surface that is dry and free of contaminates. Exposing the dry areas means restricting the movement or development of water-damaged areas. The interior of a wall cavity can become humid, especially after a flood. If the area remains sealed, water and other contaminants will continue to climb the structure.

4. Provide Assessment Point
The flood cut also acts as an assessment point. By removing the wall and some of the internal materials, a remediation service can see how much damage a flood caused. The opening allows the team to assess any structural damage.
Flooding can lead to devastating losses. A flood cut can help a remediation team salvage and protect a property.

3 Tips to Manage Roof Damage Between the Storm and Repairs

6/12/2022 (Permalink)

Man installing tarp on a roof Use a tarp on your roof to cover the damage.

Three Tips For Managing Roof Damage

After a big storm in Stillwater, MN, you need to check your roof. You know that it's important to document all storm damage and get the information to your insurance company ASAP to expedite your claim. It's also important to take steps to mitigate or minimize further damage to your roof. Here are three tips for managing roof damage between when the storm happened and when repairs can be done.

1. Use Boards and Tarp to Cover Roof Damage
Once a roof is damaged, a lot more damage can occur if moisture gets involved. Loose shingles, torn siding, and broken skylights can all allow water to leak into the structure of your home. Moisture can cause mold to grow and can deteriorate building materials. Use plastic tarps or sheets of plywood to cover areas of your roof that were damaged in a storm to prevent additional damage.

2. Inspect Quick Fixes Regularly
After you've reported the damage to your insurance company and communicated your mitigation efforts, keep an eye on things. If winds are still strong, tarps or plywood could be blown away from the area they're meant to protect. Take additional measures to secure those quick fixes if you need to. Protect your property by parking vehicles in garages, boarding up glass roofs in sunrooms, and cutting back dead or damaged tree branches.

3. Contact Emergency Restoration Services
If there is significant wind damage to your roof, contact an emergency restoration company. These professionals can help you take steps to protect your roof from additional damage and can walk you through the entire restoration process.
With roof damage, it's essential to act quickly. Since moisture can turn a missing shingle into a total roof replacement, taking the proper steps to mitigate storm damage to your roof can save you time and money in the long run.

If a Fire Didn't Cause Much Damage, Should You Fix It Yourself?

6/4/2022 (Permalink)

Metal structure burned, fire damage to electronics A fire loss should be taken seriously to avoid bigger problems.

Should You Repair a Fire If It Didn't Cause Much Damage?

A fire on your commercial property, even if there wasn't much fire loss, can put your business at a bit of a standstill. If the fire was small and caused minimal damage, you may be tempted to make the repairs yourself or ignore it for a while for the sake of your company. There are some reasons you should consider not doing this.

You Should Not DIY

Repairing fire and smoke damage can become dangerous without the proper PPE or protocols. You could even end up doing more harm than good. If you don't know exactly what you are doing, it may not get done properly and damage will persist. Although it may seem like a big deal, you should trust a professional fire remediation service.

water damage from firefighting efforts can eventually turn to mold
smoke damage can degrade electronics
specific techniques are required to remove soot from upholstery and documents
air quality is something that needs to be tested with specialized tools

You Are Probably Covered

Most insurance policies that protect against fire also include coverage for partial fire loss. Before you move anything, be sure to document everything you can with pictures and written lists. Partial losses are sometimes low on the priority list of insurance adjusters, so be sure to follow up frequently if you do not hear from them right away.

You Might Have More Damage Than You Think

Not all damage is immediately visible. Areas like the walls, siding, roof, windows, plumbing, wiring and heating system need a thorough inspection from an expert to truly assess any deterioration. Once damage is found, a professional fire restoration company can help you claim these damages on your insurance, as well.
Even in small doses, fire loss should be taken seriously to avoid bigger problems down the road. Attempting to patch it yourself could be a bad idea for both you and your commercial property. Don't be afraid to reach out to the right people when the time comes.

How To Maintain Your Sump Pump

5/28/2022 (Permalink)

A sump pump installed in a basement of a home with a water powered backup system. If you have a basement or live in a flood area, a sump pump is a good investment.

How To Care For Your Pump

Keeping your home in Oakdale, MN, from flooding can be a challenge, especially during storm season. Adding a sump pump to your basement is a smart idea. To ensure that it does its job, though, you have to maintain it properly. Here are some tips on how to take care of your pump.

Keep Pump Free of Clogs
An important part of pump maintenance is making sure that nothing obstructs the flow of water through it. There are several places you regularly need to check for clogs:

  • Intake screen
  • Discharge pipe
  • Sump basin
  • Float component

Check for debris periodically, especially if the pump was used recently or if you know a storm is on its way. A clear passage makes it work more efficiently.

Check Sump Pump Power Supply and Backup

No matter how good a shape your pump is in, it won't work if it doesn't have sufficient power. Make sure the cord is intact and that it is plugged into a GFCI outlet. Many pumps have backup batteries, which is helpful if your home loses power during a heavy storm. A battery should last at least two years, but check the manufacturer's instructions to make sure you don't need to change it at different intervals.

Test Pump Frequently
Knowing your pump is working properly gives you peace of mind. To test it, simply pour water into the basin. At a certain level, the rising water should trigger the pump, and that's how you know it's functioning the way it's supposed to. According to flood damage restoration experts, you should clean and test your pump every three or four months. If you recently experienced a flood in your home, though, it certainly doesn't hurt to test it more frequently.
A sump pump is a wise investment for homeowners, particularly if you have a basement or live in a flood plain. A well-maintained pump can prevent a lot of damage.

Do You Need Business Interruption Insurance?

5/14/2022 (Permalink)

Business interruption insurance form and red pen for signing. Business interruption insurance protects a temporarily closed business.

As a business owner, you know that insurance can save you in extreme circumstances. Business interruption insurance is no different. It encompasses the costs associated with keeping your business afloat when trying to rebuild after an unexpected event. Find out if you need this type of insurance in Oakdale, MN.

What Is Business Interruption Insurance?

Business interruption insurance protects a temporarily closed business. Most commercial property owners know that property insurance is a necessity, but have you considered the potential costs of a temporary shutdown? Also known as business income insurance, this type of coverage doesn't deal with the physical rebuild of your business. For this, you need a trustworthy damage remediation team.
However, it does help with inevitable financial issues to keep you afloat. Being forced to close due to a disaster event can impact the costs associated with running a company. Some of the aspects that business income insurance can help with include:

  • Employee pay
  • Property taxes
  • Loans
  • Property rental fees
  • Temporary relocation fees
  • Training on new equipment
  • Lost income

If your business comes to a halt, you won't be able to bring in as much income, if any. Based on your net income in previous months, this coverage can reimburse you, among other things.

What Should You Consider When Purchasing?

As with all insurance, there are aspects to consider before purchasing. Before signing up, you should assess:

  • Budget constraints
  • Natural disaster probability
  • Age and reliability of structures
  • Ability to operate without a physical location

Of course, with digital innovations, some businesses can survive a bit better by moving things online. You need to consider how well your business can handle a disaster, and adjust accordingly.

How Much Does It Cost?

The price of business income insurance will vary depending on a variety of factors. Some of these are:

  • Size of business
  • Industry-related risks
  • Coverage limit selected

You can determine how much coverage you would need in the event of needing to close for a while. Have this at the ready when selecting business interruption insurance. However, this insurance can be a saving grace when times get tough.

How SERVPRO Can Help With Emergency Response

5/6/2022 (Permalink)

Drying equipment placed in area that has been damaged by water, sheetrock removed due to humidity Water cleanup in Lakeland, MN.

How SERVPRO Can Assist in an Emergency

When you are in an emergency, time matters. Fortunately, you can make this process easier by going through a damage remediation company in Lakeland, MN. They provide a variety of claim services to help you get back on your feet quickly. They do this by working with your insurance company while performing cleanup services.

Pretesting
SERVPRO can provide comprehensive pretesting services like:

  • Assessing the damage
  • Stopping problems before they get worse
  • Taking an accurate account of what needs to be done and when

Each of these services can prove vital to you resuming your normal business operations.

Emergency Response

They are available during an emergency and have a local emergency response team. This helps to mitigate any incidental damage. They will be able to get to you quickly and are trained to deal with almost every type of emergency. Whether it is a storm, fire or flood that left your business damaged, you can count on them to be there for you quickly.

Claim Services

They can help you with the complicated process of filing the correct insurance claim. They offer services like electronic filing and online access to your claim files. They also work with a vast network of insurance companies, so there is a good chance that they understand any particular company's claims process. This can be invaluable when you just want the problem handled.

Trained Teams

SERVPRO trains all of its response teams in all aspects of fire, water, storm, cleanup and restoration. Their technicians have an Institute of Inspection, Cleaning and Restoration certification. This means that you are getting the absolute best service and people who know what they are doing when it comes to various restoration situations. They also know how to speak with insurance companies and agents to achieve the best result.
When it comes to claim services, you want a company that has a good reputation with insurance companies. Only someone who knows the ins and outs of damage restoration and insurance can give you the best service possible.

A 3-Point Pipe Break Checklist

4/29/2022 (Permalink)

Water gauge pressure, hand shut off main valve, close-up. As soon a pipe bursts the first thing to do is to shut off the water.

Checklist for Pipe Breaks

Bursting pipes call for a quick response. Any delay in shutting off the flow of water or repairing causes of damage can lead to extensive primary water damage and secondary damage such as mold. This three-point checklist can guide commercial property owners or managers through the measures necessary to respond to a broken pipe at a building located in Oakdale, MN.

1. Shut Off the Water

The main water shutoff valve should be the first stop a commercial building owner or manager makes as soon as a pipe bursts. If a building is serviced by municipal water, this valve is typically located at the point where water piping enters a structure, near a water meter. This measure can reduce the amount of water that leaks into a structure and set the stage for a plumber to fix broken pipe.

2. Contain Water Damage

Any measures that commercial building owners, managers or occupants take to slow or stop the flow of water introduced by bursting pipes from spreading can limit the damage. Consider collecting water in containers with wheels, such as rolling mop buckets or trash cans, for easier disposal or extraction.

3. Arrange for Mitigation

Taking measures to keep water damage from getting worse can reduce the extent and severity of the damage. While a building owner or manager can take a few measures, restoration professionals have the equipment and expertise to safely extract any quantity of water from a structure and facilitate drying.

Following the steps in this checklist can help a property owner or manager deal with bursting pipes at a building located in Oakdale, MN. In most cases, it is worthwhile to have professionals mitigate, clean and restore water damage. Building materials that stay damp for longer than 48 hours run a high risk of developing secondary mold damage, which is even more costly to remediate.

The Best Mold Control Strategies for Apartments

4/18/2022 (Permalink)

Mold growth on wall. Mold growth in an apartment may spread to other units or common areas in a building.

The Most Effective Mold Control Techniques for Apartments

Mold growth in an apartment building can affect a single unit, several apartments or a larger area. Discover the best strategies to control the spread of fungus leading up to mold cleanup at a multifamily dwelling in Lakeland, MN.

Keep an Infestation From Spreading

Mold growth in an apartment may spread to other units or common areas in a building. Apartments are often connected to some, if not all, of the following areas:

  • Hallways
  • Elevators
  • Stairways
  • Lobbies
  • Ventilation

Mold spores can be carried on the clothing and shoes of residents or property maintenance staff. The design of ductwork may also determine how readily mold growing in a single unit or inside air ducts can spread throughout a structure.

Resolve the Underlying Problems

If mold is growing due to conditions within a unit, a property manager or owner should take measures to resolve the problem. A leaky sink, bathroom fixtures or other factors may require containment and mold cleanup in an apartment and surrounding units.
A major mold infestation may result from severe water damage on the structural level. A broken or leaking supply line or damage to the roof of a structure may lead to hidden mold growth behind walls that has the potential to affect multiple apartments.

Promote Mold Mitigation Measures

Whether mold contamination affects a single unit, multiple apartments or a significant portion of a multifamily dwelling, it is important to mitigate conditions. Property owners and managers should respond quickly to reports of water damage and provide complete cleanup and restoration services. If mold is reported, inspection and remediation should take place as soon as possible.
Taking measures to contain the spread of spores, eliminate water sources and maintain low humidity levels can restrain mold growth prior to remediation. These methods may have the potential to limit the scope of mold cleanup at a building in Lakeland, MN.

High Risk Flood Problems: What To Do

4/6/2022 (Permalink)

Area flooded. If you live in a Flood Hazard Area, FEMA NFIP coverage may be available to you.

Is Your Home at High Risk for Flooding?

If you recently learned that you live in a Flood Hazard Area or Special Flood Hazard Area, you may be unclear on what your protection plan should be or how to get FEMA NFIP coverage. Here are four steps you should take to get started.

1. Contact your insurance agent. You may want or need to purchase flood insurance to protect against potential flooding damage to your home, so the first thing that you should do after finding out you live in a high-risk flood zone is contact your insurance company to see what flood coverage you are eligible for.

2. If you need more help, visit FloodSmart.gov. This website provides homeowners like you with valuable resources regarding flood insurance and can even help you find an agent if your current insurance company cannot help you get coverage.

3. Learn about FEMA’S National Flood Insurance Program. If you live in a Flood Hazard Area, FEMA NFIP coverage may be available to you. Check with your local floodplain administrator to see if your community participates in this voluntary federal program. If it doesn’t, you do not need to meet federal coverage requirements.

4. Familiarize yourself with Afton, MN, cleanup services. No matter how well you prepare for a potential flood, water damage is still a possibility that you need to be ready for. A reliable residential storm damage company can help you figure out a cleanup plan and begin to restore your property to the best of its ability.

Nobody wants to prepare for the worst, but living a high-risk flood area often forces you to do so. Learning about FEMA NFIP and other insurance options, as well as contacting local professionals that can help you with insurance and cleanup needs, will make it easier for you to keep your property secure in the long run.