On Monday, Sandy attacked the east coast, leaving in its wake, a path of destruction. CoreLogic Inc., a mortgage software and data firm from California, reported that New Jersey had $22.6 billion of property in harm’s way, New York had $35.1 billion, Massachusetts had $7.8 billion while Virginia had $11.3 billion. Delaware, Pennsylvania and Maryland combined had a property risk of $11 billion.
The storm threatened inland areas with power outages and flooding. The homes on the eastern coastal states, which account for about one out of every five U.S real estate sales, were destroyed by the storm.
The New York Times reported a fire which tore through more than 50 homes in a Queen's beach community, that was also affected by severe flooding. A crane on a 90-story residential building on 57th Street in Manhattan collapsed and dangled over the street.
Eqecat estimates the damages could be as high as $50 billion, and according to Consumer Federation of America, claims are expected to be filed by hundreds of homeowners for flood and wind damages.
The affected are facing power and gas shortages. Michael Bloomberg stated that 750,000 New York residents were without power after the storm while Power outages in Pennsylvania and New Jersey have smashed records with over 3 million without power.
There was a long line of cars around gasoline stations even before dawn on Friday, and a man was charged in New York City threatening another driver with a gun for a spot in the gasoline line.
Now as recovery starts after the storm, here are some tips for those who suffered property damage.
1. Calm down your family
If you have a family with kids, stress that together, the family is safe. Speak with assurance and calmness. Your tone of voice is going to be important. Tell them you’ll get through this even if it’s hard.
2. Call insurance right away
If your home was affected, you should file a claim immediately, regardless of the extent of the damage. The agent will guide you on how to file a claim, or you can contact the company directly if the agent can’t be reached. If you have yet to return home, and it’s located In an area that is known to have been damaged or flooded, call the insurer and inform them. This will give you time to spend in a hotel, which you may get compensated for later. Watch out for storm chasers/scam artists.
3. Secure valuables
If you managed to take valuables along while evacuating, you should now keep them secured. Storage compartments are a great option for securing valuables. Examples include Uncle Bob’s Self Storage, U-Haul International Inc. and SpareFoot.