Commercial property damage comes in many forms, including fire, water, and mold. Jacksonville, FL, and the surrounding areas are especially prone to water damage caused by heavy rain and tropical storms. If your business is within Duval County’s flood zones, there is a higher incidence of needing water remediation at some point.
Regardless of the type of damage, commercial property owners need to follow several key steps. By adhering to the following tips, you can help reduce the overall impact of the disaster on your company.
Contact Your Insurance Agent
After you ensure everyone has gotten out of the building safely and have called any appropriate emergency response services, it’s critical to get in touch with your insurance provider. Starting a claim right away is always a top priority, but this becomes imperative if other nearby buildings were affected by the same damage. Remember: most insurance claims are handled in the order they’re received. Waiting to call your agent after a natural disaster could back things up by several weeks or even months.
Gather Your Documentation
Your insurance agent should get someone out to your commercial property quickly to document the building’s condition. However, it’s wise to document everything for yourself while you’re waiting for them to arrive. Photographs and videos will be the most helpful resources for the claims process. You’ll also want to start gathering any documentation that verifies missing or damaged items that have become unrecognizable. Please note that you should put your safety first; if the building cannot be accessed safely, don’t enter it.
Enact Your Emergency Business Plan
Between your insurance company and a professional remediation team, you should get a good idea of how long the building will be unusable. If the cleanup process will stretch out beyond a few days, you’ll need to put your emergency business plan into motion. This typically includes working from a different space and touching base with each client to manage their expectations.