FIRST...Read & Print GENERAL HELP PAGE. Start DOING IT ALL. Call 211 OFTEN for the latest info.

1. If you are in a FEMA declared disaster (or think it will be declared) call FEMA at (800) 621-3362 and register. Be patient. If you don't get the answers you want call again.
2. Tell them your needs and losses. If you need housing TELL THEM. If they know you have a tempory place for a few days they will probably ignore your need for housing.
3. Make notes BEFORE you call them. Be brief and to the point.
4. If house is damaged give FEMA insurance info. Have Living Expense coverage (ALE) ? Structure & Contents ?
5. Don't assume anything. Check everything.
6. Visit Disaster Centers when they are in place. Follow your case with them. Make sure FEMA is not waiting for anything from you. They will probably NOT notify you if they are. Call 800 number frequently. Call early AM.
7. If you have coverage, FEMA will probably not help even if repairs exceed your coverage. No help with deductable.
8. FEMA can help with other expenses like evacuation, generator, etc.

1. If roof is damaged the first priority is to get it covered. Call 211 for tarps. Keep calling.
2. If inside flooded or water damage from roof, the enemy is MOLD. Water damaged walls and ceilings must be removed ASAP. Get a Respirator Mask, Gloves, Goggles.
3. Walls need to be removed to 1 foot above the water line. Walls soak up water. If walls get wet even a inch at the bottom, they have to come off. They will mold.
4. Get carpets out ASAP. Bottom cabinets and vanities must go.
5. Get ventilation. Wash down exposed stud walls and floors with bleach solution or special mold solution from hardware stores. With bleach, use 2 cups per gallon of water. NO SOAP OR AMONIA.
6. Wood or chipboard subfloors may need to be removed.

1. DON'T GIVE DEPOSITS !!! MANY CROOKS. Offer to pay suppliers directly for materials (not the contractor). Pay contractors for labor as they do work. If they refuse let them go.
2. Don't expect to find contractors on the phone. They are all busy. Drive around the area and find them working. Ask for a quote. You will probably need to pay for a quote.

1. See United Policy Holders UPHELP.ORG Home Owners Insurance Advocates. Read and Study their info. Go to their meetings. TIME WELL SPENT.
2. The Insurance Company is NOT your friend !!! It's a BUSINESS situation. Their systems and methods are designed to minimize their payout. Get Educated at UPHELP.ORG
3. If you have ALE Coverage the insurance company must pay your temporary housing up to a certain maximum.
4. Take lots of pictures especially before you repair or throw away things.
5. STAY AWAY FROM PUBLIC ADJUSTERS unless you are not physically or mentally able to handle your own business. They talk a good game but most do not deliver. Dealing with them your hands are tied. It's a racket.
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Disaster Guidance
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