Although you may hope or assume that nothing bad will ever happen to you, your family or your home, that’s not always the case. Emergencies happen. With regards to your home, there are a wide range of emergencies that could require a repair. A frozen water pipe could burst in the intense cold of the winter, flooding your basement or upper floors. Or maybe a faulty wiring within your bedroom walls could catch fire and burn through insulation and drywall.
As much as you can prepare for emergencies, some things are unavoidable. If you’re faced with an emergency home repair, follow these steps to handle it quickly.
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Prevent further damage. If a pipe bursts, turn off the water. If a fire breaks out, use your home’s fire extinguisher to prevent the damage from spreading. The quicker you can stop the problem, the less you’ll pay for repairs.
Contact your home insurance company. The emergency repair may be covered by your home insurance. Call them up and tell them your problem. They will ask you for estimates, and if they cover it, they will pay for all or part of the repairs.
Get an estimate on repairs. Call contractors in your area that specialize in your problem. Depending on the emergency, you may need a plumber, electrician, builder, roofer, foundation expert, cleaning service or all of the above. Ask for an estimate on the repairs.
Contact local organizations for help. Certain states have aide programs for emergency home repairs. For instance, the Virginia Department of Housing and Community Development has an emergency home repair program to help people fund repairs.
Apply for a loan. If you still need help with financing repairs, contact a bank or a lending company for a loan. Different companies offer financing options, such as installment loans from Great Plains Lending, that can give you the money needed to make the repairs quickly.
Hire contractors. Now that you have the money, hire the contractors you need to make the repairs. When you talk to them, express if the repair is urgent, so they can fit you in earlier than other clients. This is especially important if your home is unlivable prior to repair.
If you haven’t had a home emergency requiring a repair, don’t get too comfortable. It can happen at any time. Save up money from each paycheck for an emergency fund. This way, you’ll be prepared just in case anything should happen.
Do you have ideas on dealing with home repairs? Share them in the comments.