It has been a wet, wet spring in a lot of areas of the country. In fact, some areas experienced such extreme flooding that they were pronounced emergency disaster zones. If your home was affected by flooding, it is time to return and start sorting things out. Here are some general rules to follow before you hire a water damage restoration team to clean up after your initial walk-thru and cleaning efforts are complete. 

Is It Wet and Soggy? Out It Goes!

The two things that never make it through floods and flooding are plush furniture and carpeting. No matter what you do, it will be wet and soggy for a long time. Wet and soggy then transfers over to moldy and mildew-y, and then it just smells awful and stinks up your house. Rip out all the squishy wet carpet and carpet pad and remove the plush furniture from your home. All of that will have to be placed curbside for pickup or set aside to toss into a dumpster. 

Can You Wipe It Dry? Wipe Away!

Picture frames, kitchen wares, cabinets, etc., are all things you can wipe clean and dry. If some things are still a little wet after wiping them off, a hairdryer works really well to dry things. A large commercial fan does wonders on wood, tile, and laminate floors. If you can wipe it or place it somewhere where hot air can blow on it and dry it out, do it. 

Can You Wash It and Reuse It? Do It!

If you can wash it and reuse it, that is great. You may be doing load after load of laundry somewhere other than your own home at the moment (unless your laundry room is on a second story and the flood waters did not get that far). Wash, scrub, clean, and dry the loads thoroughly to remove any contaminants that would otherwise affect the integrity of anything cloth. The good news is that you might be able to salvage some, if not all, of your clothing, towels, bed linens, and maybe the curtains as well. 

Recognizing Items That Cannot Be Saved and Making a List to Replace Them

As you go along preparing for the professionals to come in and remove any major water damage from the structure of your home, keep in mind that there are going to be belongings you cannot save. Books, for instance, rarely survive a flood, and even if they are damp, do you want to painstakingly separate every page to dry out every book? Probably not, and there are other things that will need replacing as well. Make an ongoing list of everything you have to toss in a dumpster so that you can replace it when you receive your disaster relief funds.