So Many Details With Storms: Is your storm damage tax deductible?
If your commercial property has been damaged by a storm, you may want to know whether the cost of the damage is tax-deductible. Unrecoverable losses caused by storms or natural disasters are usually deductible, as long as these damages are proven and will not be reimbursed by insurance. Here are three steps you can take to find out whether you can deduct the cost of storm damage from your tax bill.
3 Steps to Find Out if Storm Damage is Tax Deductible.
- Determine how much damage your insurance covers. If your business is insured, you can only deduct damage that exceeds your coverage or was not covered for other reasons. Owners of uninsured commercial property can deduct the total cost of storm damage. Consult IRS Publication 547, Casualties, Disasters, and Thefts, to read the rules for claiming these deductions.
- Check to see if a storm or disaster is a Presidential Declared Disaster. If you are dealing with storm damage in a region that has been federally recognized as a disaster area, special filing options may apply to your situation. Check the IRS's list of tax relief in disaster situations to see if your locality is listed and find out about any assistance that is available.
- Distinguish between actual property loss and deductible property loss. Actual property loss is your total loss as the owner of a commercial property. Deductible property loss is based on the current value of your property and factors in all reductions. If you are unsure about reductions involved in a commercial property, you should contact an accountant.
If you have unrecoverable storm damage at your commercial property, you should see if you can deduct any damage from your tax bill. Tax deductions cannot overlap with covered losses, but these deductions can help to offset the cost of professional damage restoration if your property is uninsured or underinsured.
When Sever Storms Bring Damages - Count On SERVPRO To Help!
SERVPRO Tips: How To Avert Storm Damage To Your BusinessStorm DamageApproved
How to Prevent Storm Damage to Your Business
When a storm affects a business, business owners may wonder what they could have done to prevent the damage. Performing exterior maintenance and inspecting your property prior to a storm, however, may make it easier to prevent storm damage.
1. Obvious Signs of Damage
When inspecting a building, there are certain issues that may be quite obvious. For example, mold growth on a building can be highly visible, and damaged siding can also be easy to spot. Visible signs of exterior damage may also be an indicator that your building has sustained interior damage, and it is sometimes useful to employ water and mold restoration professionals if you suspect your business has existing damage that could become worse if a storm occurs.
2. Loose, Cracked or Worn-Down Materials
Thoroughly examining building materials and areas that are prone to damage before a storm can also be helpful. If you know there are building materials, such as old roof shingles, that may be prone to damage, it can be helpful to check that the materials aren’t loose, dented or otherwise damaged before a storm. Perform frequent exterior maintenance in these areas can help to keep your building maintained.
3. Potential Sources of Damage
When inspecting the exterior of your business, it may be easy to forget to examine your environment. However, even you don’t see any visible indications of a problem and you don’t notice any worn-down materials, it can be important to look around your property for debris or other materials that could damage your business during a storm. You can also use landscaping to your advantage by planting shrubs, flowers or trees that are able to absorb excess water, which may be able to prevent floodwater from affecting your building.
By performing exterior maintenance before a storm can prevent your building from sustaining damage. In your building inspection, it can be helpful to look for obvious signs of damage, worn-down materials and potential sources that could cause damage to your property during a storm.
Give us a call if a storm does hit your business! We are faster to any disaster and are ready to put our expertise, equipment and experience to work for you!
Are You Ready For Sever Storms?
Storms can bring severe damage from a variety of things. We are faster to all forms of disaster and are here to help you!
- Storms deposit a large amount of rain, which, if your home isn't prepared for, can cause serious flooding.
- If your home does flood, or after the storm has passed begins to smell musty, mold may have grown because of the moisture.
- Lightning can strike a home or yard and cause heat damage, or even start a fire.
- Winds can break off chunks of housing, roof-tiles, hurl debris around, and shatter windows.
SERVPRO specializes in remediating storm-battered and damaged properties. We know that while the storm is happening, it seems like all you can do is rely on the preparation you've done, and stay as safe as possible. Focus on those crucial things, and when it's all over, let SERVPRO help you put your property back "Like it never even happened."
Keep Your Business Safe After A Fire With These Tips!
In the event of a business fire, fire damage is only one of several concerns you may have for protecting your business from further losses. Cleanup and restoration take time after a fire occurs. Keep your business safe during that process with the following three tips.
- Avoid a Repeat Fire
When you discover a fire in your business you should turn to the local fire department to help you put it out. While your efforts may be good in stopping the fire from spreading, a fire crew can help you find the cause of the fire. Determining the cause is the best way to prevent further fire damage from occurring or reoccurring. If a small fire occurs, you may need to look for the cause yourself. Start by doing the following:
- Unplug or turn off any electrical devices in the area
- Turn off surrounding heat sources
- Shut off gas supply to prevent the fire from spreading
- Defend From the Elements
Once the fire has been completely put out and fire cleanup has begun, protecting your building from the outside elements is a critical step to avoiding further losses. In the fall and winter months, roof damage should be secured with a tarp to keep rain, hail and snow from permeating the structure. In warm months, tarping or boarding up openings can keep rodents and birds from nesting inside of the facility.
- Secure the Facility
After a commercial fire in your business may be left susceptible to looting. Looters are individuals who take advantage of emergency situations, such as commercial fires, and find weaknesses in the building's structure in order to get inside and steal valuable goods. If a business fire leaves your building with unsecured openings, you may need to hire a disaster response company to keep vandals and thieves from entering the premises.
As you face the fire damage restoration process, be sure to follow these tips to keep your business safe. Further damage and losses can be avoided if these basic procedures are observed.
So give us a call! We are faster to any disaster and are here to help get you back to "Like it never even happened."
Did You Know There Are Colors You Do Not Want Your Water To Be?
When flood water enters your commercial property, your first thoughts probably don't have much to do with the quality of the water. You're probably thinking about property losses and the work involved in getting everything cleaned up. However, the water could contain a number of bacteria, chemicals, and other harmful substances. Before you enter your damaged property, you must understand the different categories of water damage.
Category 1: Clean Water
Category 2: Gray Water
Category 3: Black Water
Understanding these categories will help you take the appropriate actions while keeping yourself, your staff, and your customers safe.
Category 1: Clean Water
This type of water damage comes from a sanitary water source, such as kitchen sinks. This water looks and smells like it came from the tap. However, once the water floods your property, it becomes contaminated by materials in the environment. It's probably okay to begin cleanup efforts with this type of flooding, but it's best not to start until water damage professionals have a chance to correctly identify the water.
Category 2: Gray Water
The precaution of waiting for accurate identification is important because of the potential risks involved with gray or black water. Gray flood water could result from a toilet overflow and may contain urine, soapy water, and other chemicals. It could have bits of human skin or oil from cooking. Category 2 water is generally unpleasant to clean up and could lead to illnesses.
Category 3: Black Water
Black water or category 3 damage is highly contaminated by bacteria, chemicals, and toxic pathogens. This type of damage might introduce sewage to hard-to-reach corners of the property and may result in the absorption of contaminants by flooring and furnishings. A minor toilet overflow could lead to category 3 damage that quickly spreads throughout the property.
The more you know about the categories of water damage, the better prepared you'll be to handle flood water damage on your property. Remember that professionals are best qualified to accurately determine the type of water in your building.
So give us a call! We are faster to any disaster and are ready and waiting to help you make things "Like it never even happened."
Don’t wait until it’s too late to make your fire escape plan!
When disaster strikes, it’s too late to plan and prepare; these things must happen well in advance. Though you, of course, hope to never need to spring a fire escape plan into action, having one in place can save lives. If you don’t have such a plan in your office, or if you haven’t reviewed yours in a while, make this a priority today.
How to Come up With an Effective Escape Plan
An emergency escape plan is at its best when it has input from several key people. This isn’t a plan you or someone else should come up with on a whim. It requires a group discussion and varying ideas.
• Consider selecting an emergency response committee.
• Meet regularly to review past plans and determine what improvements you should make.
• Open the group to your organization; invite people to participate who have experience or expertise in devising such plans.
Know Your Space
If a fire starts in your building, it’s vital that everyone exits in a calm and orderly manner. Employees must be swift, however, and this means they need to know how and where to properly exit. Identify all possible exits on each floor and in all areas of your building.
You can’t have a mad rush for the stairs or the doors if you need to evacuate the building. You also want someone to sweep the building for stragglers and someone else to count people once you’re outside. Make sure someone is covering these important duties.
Practice Makes Perfect
No fire escape plan should be complete without holding consistent drills. At least annually, practice exiting the building and meeting at a designated spot in a safe location near your building.
Don’t wait until it’s too late to make your fire escape plan. Firefighters and restoration crews will do their jobs. Make sure you do yours too.
So give us a call! We are faster to any disaster and are ready to put our expertise, experience and equipment to work for you!
Read This If You're Not A Fan of Wet Feet At Work
Don’t like getting your feet wet? Proper irrigation maintenance practices and performing regular inspections of your system can help you avoid sprinkler flooding and the problems that come along with it, but this is particularly important when turning on your system after a long period of inactivity. Failing to properly inspect your system before reactivating it can result in wasted water, poor plant health, and contamination caused by over-irrigation and run-off.
5 Places You Should Check
One of the best ways to prevent problems is to check areas of your system that have common problems. Follow these guidelines for each area:
- Clogged nozzles: Performing regular irrigation maintenance can help you avoid this problem, but it’s a good idea to check nozzles for debris such as dirt and leaves before attempting to reactivate the system.
- Missing or broken heads: To help avoid sprinkler flooding, be sure to check for any damage to the sprinkler heads. Damage can be caused by lawnmowers, normal wear and tear, improper installation, or even vandalism.
- Tilted, sunken, or misaligned heads: Look for settling of the heads or build-up that has occurred around them over time. Be sure everything is still aligned properly before attempting to turn on the system.
- Seal leaks: If you notice a leak in your spray head, you should either replace the whole single unit or the seal under the screw-off top (depending on your device). Leaks can appear in these mechanisms from dirt and debris.
- Leaking valves or pipes: If leaks are discovered in valves or pipes, they should be promptly replaced. Damage to valves and pipes can be caused by weather, lawn equipment such as shovels or sharp tools, tree roots, or vandalism.
Regular Maintenance and Inspection Goes a Long Way
Regular irrigation maintenance and inspection can go a long way in helping you avoid sprinkler flooding and other associated issues, but how often should you inspect your system? At minimum, the system should be checked twice seasonally; right before it is turned on and halfway through the season. Ideally, the system should be checked on a monthly basis. This will likely optimize your chances of discovering a potential problem before it occurs or before it is able to cost you a lot of time, money, or both.
So give us a call! We are faster to any disaster and are here to help get you back to "Like it never even happened."
How Quickly Can A Water Leak Turn Into Something Bigger?
We are frequently asked, how quickly can leaks and water damage start to grow mold? There is no simple answer. Mold growth is dependent on how wet the surface is, how hot or cold the area is and what the water flowed through, how dirty the water is and other factors. We have many customers that are shocked to find their Tahoe vacation homes had a water leak during winter when temperatures are very cold and the mold growth just takes off. Yes, there is mold that can grow in lower temperatures. The bottom line is, to prevent any kind of mold from growing you have to act fast on any damp or wet surface.
Time is the only constant, the longer the surface is damp or wet the more the odds are mold is going to grow. The key is, when you suffer a water leak and water damages don't delay to get the area effected professionally dried out. By doing so you will avoid a lot of further damages. Call SERVPRO of Columbus, our Team will walk you through exactly what needs to happen to protect your property from further damages.
After A Fire - Now What?
Ever since people have owned their own land and built their own homes, proud property owners have sought to give their houses the recovery and restoration work that it needs when disasters strike. While many modern homeowners trust in the efficient response and powerful equipment and products available to our SERVPRO team, some still stay committed to DIY restoration for fire losses in their property. Even the initial tasks like fire debris removal can come with some hazards and risks if residents attempt it without any knowledge of what to expect.
As much as many might like them to, YouTube videos cannot tell you everything you need to know about fire damage in residences. With every situation being uniquely different from other fire loss incidents, it is no surprise why most property owners choose the experience and extensive training of our Fire & Smoke Restoration Technicians accredited through the Institute of Inspection, Cleaning and Restoration Certification (IICRC.) Self-training might help you overcome specific effects in your home, but here are some things that you need to know to address fire debris removal in your damaged house.
Use the Proper PPE
Debris removal can generate considerable dust, spreading particulates and contaminants throughout the environment. Even elements like soot and smoke particles can circulate during controlled demolition tactics and shoveling debris and rubbish from the property. While our professionals can utilize tools like air scrubbers to reduce this threat, it is also recommended to wear appropriate protective equipment. Tyvek suits, safety glasses, respirators, and gloves are among the chief components of safe work attire for debris removal.
Appearances can be deceiving after a fire loss incident, especially regarding the structural integrity of specific areas of your home. Though you want to get the mitigation work completed as promptly as possible, be sure to carefully tread throughout affected areas to limit unexpected and injury-causing mishaps like structural collapses and failures.
From our licensed team of residential contractors (RCE-43137) to our restoration specialist that can help with both damage assessment and debris removal, our SERVPRO of Columbus team is here to help. Give us a call anytime! We are faster to your disaster and we will make things "Like it never even happened."
SERVPRO of Columbus & Storm Restoration - Go Hand In Hand
Indiana weather can sometimes be unpredictable. Weather in our community can range from a sunny day to a downpour with heavy winds, to freezing weather and heavy snowfall. You can go from wearing shorts to putting on a coat. Since our weather can be unpredictable, it’s important to know what damages severe weather can cause to stay prepared.
What is a thunderstorm?
A thunderstorm is a storm in which you hear lightning. But what is the scientific definition of a thunderstorm? For a thunderstorm to be considered a “thunderstorm” there are three basic things required:
- Rising unstable air
- Lifting mechanism
If you see a thunderstorm approaching, you should immediately seek shelter.
What kind of damage can a thunderstorm cause?
A thunderstorm can cause a lot of damage to communities. Heavy rain, flooding, hail, strong wind gusts and lightening are all potential dangers of a thunderstorm. Rainfall from thunderstorms can cause flash flooding. Flooding can be a hazard to basements if the sump pump suddenly stops working or can’t keep up with the amount of water, thereby flooding a basement. Depending on its size, hail can cause damage to vehicles, homes and even injure animals. Strong wind gusts can blow debris, topple trees and heavy objects around causing damage to homes and businesses.
SERVPRO of Columbus offers storm restoration
SERVPRO of Columbus offers storm restoration for your home or business. We are faster to any disaster since we are local and open 24/7/365. You can trust the SERVPRO of Columbus team to clean up any storm damage in your home or business and make it look “Like it never even happened.”