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In the wake of a disaster or catastrophic event, homeowners and business owners are often not in the right frame of mind. Making decisions, such as which disaster restoration company to use, is the last thing you want to do – however, it is one of the most important decisions you will face in life. Hiring the right damage mitigation service is key to getting your life back in order. Knowing which questions to ask will help you get started off on the right foot.


Unless you are a commercial business that has employed a disaster restoration company for a disaster preparedness consultation, odds are you will never think to hire one until after a catastrophe strikes.

The immediate aftermath of a natural disaster (hurricane, tornado, flood, or severe weather) or a fire is often a frantic, confusing, and stressful time. In order to get you life back on track, however, you will have to take a moment to put that aside and speak with your insurance agency and a local disaster recovery business.

These questions will help you choose the right service and get a feel for the catastrophe cleanup experts that will be assisting you with property and content restoration.


The first question you want to ask a disaster recovery contractor is whether or not they have experience dealing with your particular type of catastrophe, and if so, how much. If your home has structural damage from a tornado, you will want to be certain they have handled these types of cases before. If your home or business has suffered fire damage, the cleanup crew will need experience handling smoke and odor, soot damage, water extraction and water damage, as well as mold and mildew – all of which occur during the rescue efforts. Carpet cleaning and upholstery cleaning are important as well.

Next, find out of the company offers a written guarantee on their work. Find out what, exactly, it covers, and how long the warranty is good for. Some issues may not become noticeable right away (such as mold and mildew), and you want to be sure that you are covered for at least the first three months.

Rather than simply taking the damage restoration contractors word for it, always ask for references and be sure that you actually call those past customers to find out about their experiences.

Finally, most reputable disaster recovery companies require that their employees have certain training, experience, and certifications. Find out what the particular service you are calling requires – membership in industry associations is also a good sign of a legitimate operation.


If you have questions or need the help of a catastrophe recovery business, call the experts at ServiceMaster Cleaning & Restoration. We specialize in both residential and commercial disaster restoration.