Wisconsin is no stranger to storms, and contrary to popular belief, it’s not just the Winter weather we have to worry about. The Summertime brings its own threats, from tornadoes and wind to heavy monsoon rains and even the risk of flooding. You couldn’t ask for a more charming town to call home, but the weather here can be pretty dramatic.
You don’t have to tell a Maustonite how to prepare for the storm; we know the drill: Storm windows, canned goods, fresh batteries, and be sure to check your insurance policy, so you know what’s covered. But the aftermath can leave us scratching our heads. Here are some rules of thumb to follow right after a storm has passed:
Prevent Further Damages (Where Possible)
You might not be able to fix that broken pipe yourself, but you can point a room fan at the wet spot and shut the water valve off. Preventing damages from getting worse is your first responsibility as a policy-holder.
Call Your Insurer Before You Talk To Any Contractors
Any contractor who tries to talk to you before you’ve even called your agent, you can be pretty sure they’re a storm chaser. A storm chaser is a breed of… well we shouldn’t say “contractor,” because more often than not, they never even do the job, they cash the check from your insurer and skip town. You can identify these guys by strong-arm sales tactics, door-to-door selling and cold-calls. They’re known to fabricate or even create damages to justify the contract, and if they do it at all, they’re most likely just to call it a day. So call your insurer first, they’ll appraise the damages, and then you can get in touch with your contractors.
Be Picky About Contractors
Your insurance provider is only going to cut you one check, so don’t take chances. Make sure that any contractor you hire has a good reputation in their field. When reading online reviews, look at the dates. If the company doesn’t have anything online dating back more than a month, if they don’t have a yellow page listing, then there’s a good chance that they’re not as reliable as they pretend to be. Be picky, take your time, and find a contractor you can trust.
Dealing with a storm is stressful, trying to figure out what’s covered and what isn’t, managing all the damages from high winds and heavy rains. But it’s not a problem that you can’t get under control. You’re there as the first line of defense against the damages, and insurance will back you up on anything that you can’t handle yourself. Mauston is a pleasant little town situated in one of the most beautiful stretches of land on the planet, and a storm now and then is a fair price to play for such good livin’, just so long as you’re prepared for that storm, and prepared to handle the aftermath.