Expert: Don't rush to renovate flooded home

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People dealing with flood-damaged homes can't wait to put it behind them. But one contractor says you shouldn't to renovate (KTRK)

Like many Houstonians, Caryn Jones is drying out from last week's storms. She's anxious to get her house back, but right now it's full of crews.

"They're in my home, and I'm trusting them to put my home back together." Says Jones.

They work for Sherry Taylor, a licensed Houston remodeler. She says rushing to renovate can be a homeowner's biggest mistake.

"You're going to put the wood and it's going to start expanding and contracting. You're going to see sheet rock starting to crack. So it's very important that a drying out process takes place before any materials go back into a house," Taylor said.

Taylor also advises that your AC can help you out.

"You need to run your air conditioner between 70 and 72 degrees in order to pull the humidity out," she said.

Next she suggests hiring a home renovation company that's local, not out of state.

"It's very important that people use someone that they know that's going to be around for a long time and not just someone out of a truck," said Taylor.

To avoid more delays, Taylor says find someone with multiple crews that can quickly move from one job to the next and ask if they have any connections.

"We have availability to some of the dumpsters and PODS services because we maintain ongoing accounts with those. Right now the City of Houston is at about two weeks waiting for any dumpster or PODS unit," Taylor said.

Finally, watch out of for extra costs, especially if your contractor suggests upgrades.

"Then they will be out of pocket for the upgrade between what FEMA will cover and what the homeowner chooses," says Taylor.

For Jones, she's already remodeled this home once just a few years ago, but she says that's OK.

"I have no doubt in my mind that my home's going to be even better than it was from the last time and that does give me some comfort right now," she said.
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