The Importance of a Thorough Inspection Following a Natural Disaster

Natural disasters are a common occurrence. Be it a tornado, hurricane, mudslide, earthquake, tsunami, wildfire, or some other type, these destructive events can wreak havoc on everything that comes in their path. Often, however,  natural disasters leave behind unseen damage that can be a health hazard to people nearby. 

Homes are often seriously compromised in a variety of ways following a natural disaster. So, if you’re the owner of a house that’s just gone through a natural disaster, let’s take a look at the importance of performing a thorough inspection after the fact. 

1. Obtaining Disaster Relief

If your home went through a federal disaster like a major hurricane or something similar, you’ll likely qualify for some kind of disaster relief. Disaster relief is given out in accordance with the level of damage your home has suffered in most cases, so getting an inspection to officially verify the amount of damage that occurred is crucial to getting the relief you’re entitled to. A proper inspector can inspect the framing of a house as well as all other areas to get a full tally of everything. 

2. Prevent Further Catastrophe

If a major structural issue has been caused by a natural disaster, you can address it before it gets worse by identifying it through inspection. High winds, especially, are known to knock things loose and place homes in precarious positions, primed to collapse or cave-in in some way. You also might have damage that could take a while to discover.

Like if your basement heating is damaged, for example, you might not know until winter rolls around and you try to turn on the heating. By hiring an inspector to go through and test your whole home to see if it had been compromised in a way that might lead to a safety concern, you can avoid potential injury or worse. 

3. Insurance Purposes

Even if you didn’t go through a federally recognized natural disaster, you can still qualify for insurance help for residential properties. Especially if your home was damaged in a way that is covered by your insurance, the first thing you’ll want to do is have an inspector come out and tally up the damage. 

Getting this arbitrary inspection and being able to present the results to your insurance company is crucial to getting compensated for the cost of repairs, as well as any other costs you may be entitled to. 

4. Proper Documentation

If you want to sell your home in the future, having an inspection on record after a natural disaster will put a lot of people at ease who might be interested in buying your property. 

Natural disasters are known to cause immense amounts of undocumented damage whenever they strike, so by proving that your home is up to code with local regulations even after a natural disaster, you can make your property seem that much more legit. 

You can also use a post-disaster inspection to take account of garage door replacement costs as well as other costs you covered during the cleanup and repair process. 

Inspections are Vital After a Natural Disaster

If you own a home of any type, natural disasters are your worst enemy. They can strike at any time and cause untold amounts of damage and destruction. That’s why, if your home has lived through a natural disaster, you need an inspection pronto. 

Getting an inspection directly after a natural disaster will help you resolve issues, tally up costs, invest in repairs, and document everything for insurance purposes, and more down the road. 

Brian Jeffries is the content director for the Innovative Building Materials blog and a content writer for the building materials industry. He is focused on helping fellow homeowners, contractors, and architects discover materials and methods of construction that save money, improve energy efficiency, and increase property value.