How to Prepare Your Business for Severe Wet Weather

Rainy season is here - flooding can become a major hazard to your business. These risks shouldn’t be taken lightly, as water damage is among the most costly types of weather-related damage to clean up and repair. According to the National Flood Insurance Program, the cost of cleaning up a 1,000-square-foot space can easily run upwards of $20,000. Given all these potential costs and risks, it’s essential to prepare your business for severe wet weather.
 
Know your flooding risks. Flooding can happen anywhere, but there are certain areas that are especially prone to it. Know how much risk you face so you can determine how much protection you need. If your business is near a body of water, such as a river, lake, odds of flooding are generally much higher than if you’re far from water. That said, flash flooding and other factors can cause flooding just about anywhere.  In fact, about 20% of flood insurance claims come from low-to-moderate risk flood areas.
 
Bring your valuable assets to higher ground. Basements and other low-lying areas are most vulnerable to flooding. Consider keeping your most important and valuable assets - whether paperwork, computers or other equipment - above ground level to reduce the chance of water damage. Also consider ways to protect those assets in case of water damage through the roof or due to a pipe burst, such as by keeping them in waterproof containers or covering them with water-resistant tarps.
 
Now - what’s covered? Flood insurance policies cover physical damage to your property and possessions. You can use the following list as a general guide:
 
Building Property
• The insured building and its foundation
• Electrical and plumbing systems
• Central air conditioning equipment, furnaces, and water heaters
• Refrigerators, cooking stoves, and built-in appliances such as dishwashers
• Permanently installed carpeting over unfinished flooring
• Permanently installed paneling, wallboard, bookcases, and cabinets
• Window blinds
• Detached garages (up to 10 percent of Building Property coverage) Detached buildings (other than garages) require a separate Building Property policy
• Debris removal
 
Personal Contents Property
• Personal belongings, such as clothing, furniture, and electronic equipment
• Curtains
• Portable and window air conditioners
• Portable microwave ovens and portable dishwashers
• Carpets that are not included in building coverage
• Clothing washers and dryers
• Food freezers and the food in them
• Certain valuable items such as original artwork and furs (up to $2,500)
 
What’s Not Covered?
• Damage caused by moisture, mildew, or mold that could have been avoided by the property owner
• Damage caused to Personal Contents in a basement is generally excluded
• Currency, precious metals, and valuable papers such as stock certificates
• Property and belongings outside of an insured building such as trees, plants, wells, septic systems, walks, decks, patios, fences, seawalls, hot tubs, and swimming pools
• Living expenses such as temporary housing
• Financial losses caused by business interruption or loss of use of insured property
• Most self-propelled vehicles such as cars, including their parts
 

Give me a call with questions.

Dan Zeiler

dan@zeiler.com

708.597.5900 x134

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