In the event of a disastrous event in your life such as a fire that has caused damage to your insured home or business, you should be aware of Disaster Clean-up Scams. These Companies usually appear rather quickly and have you sign over your insurance money to “save” your property. They generally take ALL of your insurance payment with their “services” of cleaning items that could easily be replaced such as ball point pens and mugs. They will clean equipment that can not be saved and take items that are covered for replacement under the insurance to be placed in “O-zone” chambers at a cost that can be more than the item is worth.
For example if you have had a house fire and pretty much everything was damaged by smoke and fire, they may want to take your Sofa Which can be replaced for less than the O-zone chamber will cost to remove the smoke smell from it. If you are in a building with other residents who may be using the same clean-up crew, you should compare your billings with others in the building to see if you are being billed for the cost of the same employees cleaning in your unit at the same time others are being billed for that same crew to clean their unit.
Before you sign any contracts to hand over your insurance payment to any company offering services to “Clean-up” your property, find out if the Fire Department has determined it to be a total loss or if it is habitable and salvageable. If the Fire Department has determined that it is a total loss DO NOT hire a clean-up crew. It will be a waste of your insurance funds to clean any of it. Take it as a loss and just begin again with new things and replace your items as you can. Be aware of Disaster Clean-up Scams that will take ALL of your funds and leave you with nothing to rebuild or repair your life.
TIP: If the Clean-Up sales person arrives before the Fire Department has left or even had a chance to put out the fire, this can indicate that they were listening to a police/fire scanner to get to the scene quickly to make a sale. This is a RED FLAG, do not let them rush you into signing any documents or contracts.
These Disaster Clean-up Scams prey on people who own businesses and home owners alike. It is important that you do not just take your insurance adjuster’s suggestion to hire them. Do not just sign the contract because it sounds good. Take the contract with you to read it over, research the Clean-up company, and find out what the Fire Department’s determination is. Again if it is determined to be a “total loss” do not hire a clean-up crew, Simply use the insurance payment for what it is truly meant to be used for. Insurance is so that you can rebuild and replace your lost property not clean-up the damaged useless property. Be aware that although not all Disaster clean-up companies are scams but there are Disaster Clean-up Scams that will come after your insurance payment and are very happy to take it from you.
When you are approached by anyone who offers to clean-up for you in your time of need, ask yourself, What are they going to clean-up? The construction company will remove all the debris from the disaster before they begin to rebuild. The only thing a Clean-up crew is going to clean is the damaged goods left inside the building or home. Ask yourself, is what they are going to clean priceless or will it cost less to simply replace it. Most of the time the items that are going to be cleaned are actually just items that have been damaged in some way and can be replaced at a lower cost than salvaging the damaged item. Keep your insurance payment and use it to rebuild your life and your home or business. You deserve it, after all isn’t that why you paid the monthly insurance fees in the first place?
If you would like to rebuild your home or business, you are welcome to use our easy Online Quote Form or Call Mallory Construction today to get started. We offer high quality workmanship along with friendly service at a reasonable price.