Experienced Recent Flooding?
- Take photos and videos to document the damage to your property. You will also need to make a list of all items damaged, destroyed, or lost.
- Call your insurance agent and ask them if you have flood insurance and what you need to do in order to file a claim.
- Before doing any cleaning make sure that it is safe to do so. Make sure that any buildings are structurally sound and that they aren't about to collapse. Also the electricity and gas need to be secured so that there aren't any chances of accidental electrocution, or fire.
- Wear appropriate safety gear (like masks, gloves, and boots) when cleaning and removing items.
Information resources on cleaning and repairing flooded homes
- Repairing Your Flooded Home (via American Red Cross - PDF)
- Flood Recovery Tips (via American Red Cross)
- What to do After a Flood (via Floodsmart)
- What to Do in the First 24 Hours After a Flood (via Houselogic)
- Health Checklist for Repairing Your Flood Damaged Home (via New York Department of Health)
- How to Make a Repair Flood Damage Check List (via Wikihow)
If you have flood insurance through the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) you will need to contact your insurance agent about submitting a claim. Please be aware that most homeowner's insurance policies don't cover damages from flooding. So if you don't have a separate flood insurance policy you are going to have to pay for the cleanup and repair of your home.
- Filing your Flood Insurance Claim Fact Sheet (PDF)
- How to File Your Claim (via Floodsmart)
- National Flood Insurance Program Flood Insurance Claims Handbook (English | Spanish)
- National Flood Insurance Program Summary of Coverage (English | Spanish)
Rebuilding Your Home
Depending upon how severe your home was damaged, you may need to obtain building permit before starting any reconstruction work. If your home was damaged substantially enough you may be required to make changes to it in order to lessen its flood risk. Check with your community's building department before starting any repairs.
FEMA has many publications that offer information on ways to reduce the vulnerability of your home to flooding.
- Homeowner's Guide to Retrofitting, Six Ways to Protect Your House From Flooding (PDF)
- Homeowner's Guide to Retrofitting (3rd Edition, 2014), full publication (PDF 53 MB)
- Protecting Building Utilities From Damage
- Protecting Manufactured Homes from Floods and Other Hazards (2nd Edition, 2009 - PDF 16 MB)
- Substantial Improvement / Substantial Damage, Desk Reference (May 2010 - PDF 10 MB)
- Technical Bulletins, FEMA has developed a series of 11 bulletins that provide guidance on how to design buildings meet the building performance standards of the NFIP