FAQs

  • Is Restorations, Inc. an insurance company?

    No. We work closely with insurance companies, but do not maintain insurance policies. Much of our work, however, is covered by property owners insurance companies.
  • I have mold in my house. What do I do?

    The safest thing to do after encountering a large amount of mold, or suspected mold, is call a professional like Restorations, Inc. While every house contains mold as a natural substance, certain types and amounts of spores compromise your air quality, especially after water damage/remediation.

    Restorations, Inc. advises homeowners to have testing, including of air quality, done before any treatment. This will determine the type of mold, and indicate the proper treatment. We work with a third party testing firm, Homewise Mold Pros, for all mold testing, and will assist you with treatment after they have confirmed the mold and its type.

    Mold spores start to grow within 24 to 48 hours of a water loss. Even after remediation, water can cause trouble. Special chemicals and air-lock procedures may be necessary for safe and proper mold removal, and often the job is too much for a homeowner to take on by themselves. Calling a professional is always the safest way to proceed. Restorations, Inc. is IICRC certified to perform water and mold mitigation according to established procedures and guidelines. After mitigation is complete, Homewise Mold Pros can perform testing to ensure safe occupation of the house.
  • My basement is flooded! What do I do, and how do I know if I am covered?

    First, if there is any possibility of electrical appliances in the flooded area, do not go into the area. Call Restorations, Inc. so that we can assess the situation and provide safe restoration/water removal.

    Whether you have insurance coverage or not, you should remove as many contents from the flooded area as possible, even before the removal of water. This will reduce your personal loss, and demonstrate that you did everything possible to minimize your losses. It also helps you provide a detailed list of lost items. Insurance companies may be quicker to compensate those who provide accurate, detailed information in the aftermath of water damage.

    Unless you live in a floodplain and have purchased flood insurance, it is unlikely that your insurance will cover the flood (ground water intrusion) damage. However, there may be partial coverage if you have a sump pump that was damaged by the storm. Again, please call your agent ASAP to verify coverage. Due to the water and wet weather in Grand Rapids, Michigan, flood insurance may be something to consider for the future.
  • What happens after I call Restorations, Inc.? Who coordinates with my insurance company?

    Whether youu2019ve called Restorations, Inc. directly, or called your insurance company and requested our services, our office will contact you to schedule a damage inspection and repair estimate.

    If your insurance company participates in a preferred contractor program, we will work directly with them to settle on a cost of repairs and then begin the repair process. If they do not participate in a preferred contractor program, we will provide you with an estimate for repairs, which you can submit to your insurance company. Once a repair price is agreed upon, repairs will begin.

    If temporary or emergency repairs were necessary, we will request your written authorization to provide those repairs before an estimate has been agreed upon and a contract signed. Temporary and/or emergency repairs may be authorized via your insurance company if you are participating in a preferred contractor program.

    If you had a water loss, water mitigation and mold prevention will begin immediately. For other types of damage, temporary power will be restored, if necessary, and removal and inventory of personal property will start. Depending on the extent of the damages, necessary demolition, restoration, remodeling and repairs will commence, with your input regarding types of materials, colors, etc. that you would like to have in your home. Your personal property will be removed as necessary and cleaned/repaired/stored in our warehouses during repairs. You will have full access to that property during the repair process.

    As certified IICRC water mitigators, we are required to proceed with water mitigation pursuant to strict procedures and guidelines. We provide written information outlining this process. All water loss claims are STRONGLY recommended to have air quality testing and mold testing prior to your return to the home. If such testing is not covered by your insurance, and you are unwilling to pay out of pocket, we require you sign a waiver confirming that such testing was not done at your direction.

    After repairs are completed we will provide a final cleaning of your home to insure that no dust or residue remains from the repairs. We then return your personal property, including furniture, clothing, dishes, etc, and put everything back where it belongs.
  • Can Restorations, Inc. do remodeling as well as restoration?

    Absolutely. Because we are a full service contractor, remodeling is a significant part of our business. Homeowners often take advantage of having our restoration contractors on site by also making changes such as additions, expansions and basement finishing. We will gladly provide a separate remodeling estimate, and then coordinate that with the repairs to save you time, money and effort. While we typically request a 50% down payment as a remodeling contractor, payment plans are available for the balance. We accept Visa, MasterCard and Discover.
  • Many of my belongings were damaged and need to be disposed of. How does this happen?

    To assist you in processing your personal property claim, Restorations, Inc. will give you a discard list, itemizing (to the best of our ability depending on condition) those things that are not salvageable. We also provide photographs and video of the discarded item. Your insurance company will deal directly with you regarding the value of personal property that had to be discarded.
  • Someone drove a vehicle into my house. Whou2019s insurance will cover repairs?

    Your insurance company generally pays for the repairs to the structure, though they will most likely be repaid (subrogate against) by the insurance company of the vehicle driver. You do not need to be involved in the interaction between the two insurers. Restorations, Inc. can repair the damage caused by the car in your house.
  • A tree on my neighboru2019s property fell onto mine and damaged my house. Who is responsible for damages?

    Usually, if the tree is rooted on your neighbors property but damages yours, your insurance company will cover the damage and then subrogate (seek reimbursement from) your neighbor. Always check with your insurance company before starting any repairs, as different policies provide various coverage.
  • My house was built using many unusual and/or rare materials. Will I get the same materials after repair?

    Yes. Most insurers provide that you will get materials that are the same as or similar to those that existed before the damage. Even if you had special order hand carved pecan wood from Malaysia flooring, we can probably find it. After 45 years in the business, we have developed extensive resources for locating and obtaining exactly what you want and deserve. We believe that for a true restoration, buildings need to be treated individually, and so will not simply get the features that are easiest to find. Again, please check with your insurance company for coverage specifics.
  • How long does it take for mold growth to start after water damage?

    Mold growth typically takes 24 to 48 hours to develop other air born spores, and 72 hours to create visible mold. This is why it is very important to have water damage taken care of right a way, and by a professional. Mold from water damage or otherwise is not something to take lightly, as it has been linked to many health hazards.
  • How do I winterize a home to protect it from the weather?

    There are several things involved in the home winterize process:

    Clean out your rain gutters and downspouts before the snow falls so that water will drain properly. This will also help to prevent ice back ups.

    Wrap exterior water lines in some sort of insulation to prevent them from freezing.

    Fill and cover any holes or cracks in your foundation. If water penetrates them it could freeze and thaw, causing the cracks or holes to worsen, perhaps leading to a water leak.
  • I just had a fire! What do I do?

    You can call us right away. Restorations, Inc. is a preferred contractor for most Michigan insurance companies. We provide post-disaster clean up and restoration fire and smoke damage do not stand a chance. After you call, we will temporarily secure the premises, giving you time to find out what your insurance covers. Contact your insurance agency ASAP to get your claim filed after the fire, and restoration coverage and processing can begin.

    If you call your insurance agent or company first, they can call Restorations, Inc. to initiate the repair process. We will then call you to advise when we'll be on site to begin assessing the damage and start repairs.

    We provide 24/7 emergency services from Lansing to the lake shore, from south of Kalamazoo to Newaygo (and probably beyond!), and so will be ready whenever and wherever you need us.
  • A tree fell on my roof. Can you remove it?

    Yes. We are equipped to remove most trees and limbs which may fall on a structure. If the tree is too large for us to handle, we can arrange for an independent removal service to take care of it. Not all insurance policies provide for the tree to be disposed of after removal. Please contact your insurance agent or company to verify your coverage.
  • Can Restorations, Inc. Remove lead based paint (LBP)?

    Yes. We are EPA licensed to mitigate LBP, which can pose serious health problems. How the paint is dealt with depends on the extent of the paint, its condition and location. Let Restorations, Inc. evaluate the LBP and determine the most effective process for safe mitigation.
  • I need damage repair and cleanup, but do not have insurance coverage. Can Restorations, Inc. help?

    We certainly can. Many people do not have insurance to cover the losses after a flood or fire. We will be happy to provide an estimate, as well as develop a payment plan that works for you. Please feel free to call Restorations, Inc. directly to obtain an estimate and arrange for repairs. We accept Visa, MasterCard and Discover.
  • My insurance does not cover my water loss. Can I lower the cost of repairs?

    First, stop the source of water, if possible. Move everything out of the room to prevent secondary water damage resulting from high humidity. Elevate large pieces of furniture on Styrofoam blocks, plastic or tin foil. You may want to pull any carpet loose from the tack strips and remove the wet padding beneath.

    Because it is so spongy, padding retains a lot of water, and can take a long time to dry if left under carpet. Removing wet padding also increases the chances of salvaging the carpet itself. You may also want to remove the baseboard, if possible, to eliminate moisture between it and the walls. If Restorations, Inc. performs timely remediation, water damage will be further minimized.
  • Who pays for my utilities during my home repair?

    During a restoration, buildings need to have running utilities. It is possible that your insurance policy will take care of your utility bills. Restorations, Inc. will have your utilities reconnected during repair, and we typically receive the bill for what gets used while we work. We pay that bill, and then submit the costs to your insurance agency as a part of repair.
  • My damaged house is not at all fit to live in. Where will I live during repairs?

    Alternative Living Expenses (ALE) may be included with your insurance coverage. Your insurance company may pay for you and your family to live in an apartment, hotel or rental house while repairs are made. To avoid incurring a housing bill, make sure you know how long ALE is available through your insurer.
  • How does Restorations, Inc. keep track of all of my belongings and where they belong?

    We photograph and/or take video of the entire premises so that we have a record of every knick-knack and piece of clothing, including where it belongs. Between that and our written inventory of everything we remove, you can be assured that you will get everything back, and in its proper place.
  • Am I able to go to work while Restorations, Inc. repairs my home?

    We will place a lock box at your property which allows us access with a key you provide. Restorations, Inc. is licensed, bonded and insured, as is any restoration/remodeling subcontractor that we use, so you can feel safe about anyone we send to your home. If you have a major claim that involves multiple personnel over a significant length of time, we do request that you remove irreplaceable valuables, such as jewelry, in case any unauthorized person does gain access to your home.
  • The home I rent was damaged by a fire/flood. Who is responsible for damages?

    The building itself may be covered by the landlords insurance. However, this will not cover your personal property. If you have renters insurance, it will help with your losses. If you do not have renters insurance, you may have no recourse for your fire/water damage and remediation.
  • We have had a fire and the power is off. What about refrigerators and freezers?

    Do NOT open refrigerators or freezers when the power is out due to major home damage. Any time the door is opened, cooled air escapes and inhibits food preservation. Call Restorations, Inc. so that we can start salvaging the contents. If certain items are lost, your insurance might pay for them with an itemized list of the damages, which is best obtained before things begin to rot. If we get to the scene quickly enough, we can restore temporary power, and transfer saved refrigerator and freezer contents to working storage.
  • All of my clothes were burned or smoke damaged in a house fire. Can I get clothes for work?

    Immediate funds for necessary clothing should be available through your insurance company. Additionally, Restorations, Inc. works with local dry cleaners to put a rush on your salvageable work clothing, and have it ready for you within 24 hours. Our detailed inventory lets us locate needed items, and ensure they will be ready when you require them.
  • I had several pieces of antique china that were damaged in the fire. If they cannot be replaced, can they be fixed?

    Restorations, Inc. has excellent resources for locating replacement pieces such as china. If we cannot find a replacement, we have relationships with artisans who can repair memorabilia, artwork, collectibles and more. We will be happy to locate and arrange for whatever services you may need to repair or replace what has been damaged.
  • Before the damage of the fire/flood, my carpet was high quality and very expensive. How do I know the replacement will be equal?

    Insurance companies request that we use a third party carpet valuation company, called ITEL. We send them a sample of your carpet and pad, and they determine exactly what you had, including manufacturer, price and weight. They also tell us where to get a replacement. This service is also available with non-insurance claims.
  • Where is my water meter located?

    In case of a water leak you may need to know the location of water meter and main shut off appliances. In most cases you will not have to shut off the water to your entire house; most of your water lines have their own shut off valves. If those individual valves fail, then you will have to find your main shut off. Your main shut off valve is located at your water meter, which is most likely located in your mechanical room. Every house is different, so be certain of the water meter location in case of an emergency.
  • How can I prevent ice back-ups?

    Ice back-ups occur when there is inadequate insulation and/or ventilation in your attic space. The best way to winterize home properties and prevent ice back-ups is to consider these three things:

    The amount of insulation in your attic. By code, the minimum amount of insulation in your attic should be R38 (12 inches of insulation).

    Adequate ventilation for your attic space. The attic space should be around the same temperature as the outside. If your attic is warmer than the outside temperature then you don't have adequate ventilation. You can solve this problem by either adding a ridge vent, vented soffit or more pop vents.

    Ventilation blockage. You might have to rake some insulation away from your soffit. If you have a good amount of snow on your roof you may have to shovel around your vents to allow the air to escape your attic.