What is a Restoration Contractor and When Might You Need One

What is a Restoration Contractor and When Might You Need One

Small Projects and Repairs
By Mateos Glen Hayes June 24, 2022

We hope your home never falls victim to a disaster, but things can and do go wrong from time to time. Extreme weather can damage your home and cause flooding and mold. Fires can severely damage a home and leave it unsafe to live in, and there is a myriad of other ways that something beyond your control could cause problems for your home.

Fortunately, it is pretty unlikely that any of this will happen to your abode, but nonetheless, it’s a good idea to get to know the professionals that can help you if that unlucky day should come. If your home should become in need of restoration work to make it whole again, the qualified expert to call will be a restoration contractor.  

What’s The Difference?

A restoration contractor will have more specialized skills than a general contractor.

A restoration contractor will have more specialized skills than a general contractor.

First things first. What is a restoration contractor and how do they differ from just a general contractor?

Put simply, a restoration contractor is someone whose main area of expertise is repairing homes that have been struck by a disaster. Apart from their more specialized role, they also operate differently from a general contractor. General contractors can help with a wide range of services from renovating your house to building an addition.

They work with the client throughout the project and may hire subcontractors for specialized work. General contractors usually need to be hired in advance of a project to ensure they aren’t busy with another project. For example, a contractor can work with you to keep your living room renovation on a budget.

By contrast, a restoration contractor is typically available 24/7 since their job requires them to respond to emergency situations. As such, they must work faster than a general contractor to find quick fixes and provide free consultations. Restoration contractors also offer a range of other services most general contractors do not.

Mold remediation is a critical task to make your home safe to live in again.

Mold remediation is a critical task to make your home safe to live in again.

Contents Cleaning Services

Restoration contractors are able to help you recover household items that may have been damaged. Important items such as heirlooms, media, electronics, or even legal documents are taken to be cleaned of any fire, smoke, or water damage and are then returned to their owners. This is of course a hugely useful service as it saves you money and time having to replace those items. While a variety of technologies can be helpful in restoring damaged items, one popular solution is to use ultrasonic technologies which can be quite effective at restoring all manner of damage. 

Securing and Boarding Up

If disaster strikes, your home will likely be left exposed to thieves and the elements. This is not great considering that you will likely have to stay somewhere else while your home is worked on, meaning you won’t be there to guard it. Fortunately, home restoration contractors are well aware of the inherent dangers of leaving a vacant and damaged home without security.

Part of their job is therefore to secure your home by boarding up damaged windows and entryways. This keeps out any unwanted visitors but also allows more time for restoration work since the contractor doesn’t have to worry about further damage from the elements.

Damaged homes are often left exposed to vandals and the elements, and need to be secured.

Damaged homes are often left exposed to vandals and the elements, and need to be secured.

Mold and Mildew Remediation and Removal

Restoration contractors also specialize in removing any and all contaminants from your home caused by a disaster. Mold and mildew inside your home are bad news and must be remediated promptly to ensure safe interior air quality. Likewise, sewage inside your home is another major health risk that must be dealt with quickly. Your general contractor is unlikely to help here since they do not prefer to work in such conditions, and that is another way that restoration contractors are different. 

Why Hire a Restoration Contractor? 

Restoration contractors work with insurance companies so the filing of your claims is trouble-free.

Restoration contractors work with insurance companies so the filing of your claims is trouble-free.

When you’re dealing with a difficult - and not to mention expensive - situation like your house flooding, it may be tempting to try and spare as many expenses as you can in the repair process. However, this is one of those don’ts of hiring a contractor. While it may seem like you are saving money by not fully restoring things or by not repairing damaged items, this may actually increase your expenses and stress in the long run.

A home with lingering structural damage is not going to be looked kindly upon by local authorities, and you may not even be allowed to re-enter your home if it is found to not be in an acceptable state. A perpetually damaged structure can even be condemned by local regulators, thereby making it much harder to reclaim it. 

Safety

Speaking of which, safety is arguably the number one reason you should hire a home restoration contractor. A home that has been damaged by flooding or fire isn’t going to be a straightforward repair project. There are so many different details that will require special attention. Electrics will have to be repaired and checked for safety, and likewise, gas lines will require similar attention. Plumbing will have to be checked for any leaks or damage.

There are also latent dangers from working on a site with damaged materials that may release harmful pollutants when burned. Some forms of insulation and cladding for instance are known to release noxious fumes when burned. These fumes can linger post-disaster, making the site unsafe to work on without protection. A restoration contractor will know about these risks and be better able to mitigate them than your average joe. 

Restoration contractors have a wealth of experience and professional tools at their disposal to get the job done quickly and economically.

Restoration contractors have a wealth of experience and professional tools at their disposal to get the job done quickly and economically.

Experience

Beyond knowing the required safety steps, your licensed contractor will also be endowed with a wealth of experience from working on a bunch of damaged homes. They will already have all the know-how, tools, and relationships with other experts needed to get your property repaired as quickly as possible.

Home restoration contractors will also focus on restoring your property as economically as possible, and this can only be done effectively if you have the prerequisite experience. Naturally, hiring a restoration contractor also means saving money on equipment since you won’t have to buy machines such as dehumidifiers, moisture meters, or air movers as your contractor will already have these things. 

Peace of Mind 

A critical component of recovering from any home disaster is to ensure you get your claims filed properly with your insurance company. This gives you peace of mind since you know that you’ll have help putting things back together and prevents you from having to deal with unpleasant surprises such as rejected claims. This is another area where your restoration contractor can help by working with the insurance company to ensure that your claims filing process goes off without a hitch.  

You definitely don’t want to be stuck paying out of pocket for something that could have been covered by insurance. Also, since the contractor and insurance companies often coordinate, your contractor will know what kind of rates you’re likely to see over the course of the project. Getting estimates faster means completing claims faster, allowing for a quick and stress-free process.

Being Prepared

Home restoration contractors will also be able to give you pointers for future disaster preparedness strategies. Restoration contractors are aware of common weak points and damage patterns in houses hit by disaster, and so can also give you tips on how to make your home stronger in the face of disaster. With the right precautions in place damage to your home can be reduced, making any home restoration project less complex.

MG

Written by
Mateos Glen Hayes

Written by Mateos Glen Hayes

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