Finding a water leak in your home can set off an instant wave of panic. Knowing these steps will help you minimize the damage and the stress of putting it all back together.
There is a Smell in Our Kitchen…
Around Christmas, I started to smell something a little musty around our kitchen sink. We checked under the sink itself and the faucet. Nothing was leaking. Fast forward a week and the smell was getting worse. We emptied everything out from under the sink and found that the back of our cabinets had mold. There was a leak in the wall and it was causing all sorts of destruction to our kitchen.
You would think that since this is the second time we have gone through a water leak, the first with our dining room, that I would be a seasoned veteran. But this was a lot like having a second child, the baby is born (or the leak happens) and you vaguely remember what to do but it’s still a little hazy. There aren’t any clear answers on Google – for the baby or the water leak – so here is my handy list of what to do when the leak happens. I’m still working on the concise parenting list…
9 Tips for a Water Leak
Locate and stop the water leak if possible. We had to shut our water off for a few days until the plumber could get out here. BUT, the plumber won’t come if there is mold so you need the mold remediation company to come out first.
Call a mold remediation company. Get a few quotes also. Even though your homeowners’ insurance will most likely cover this, you want someone that you feel will get the job done right and understands how the process works.
Call your insurance. Ours didn’t send an adjuster out until after the mold remediation process was complete. The adjuster will come out and write up an estimate of what it will cost to fix the damage.
Save receipts! Our insurance will reimburse us for a portion of our cost of eating out since we don’t have a kitchen.
Ask your friends for help. We borrowed a microwave and hot plate from a friend. We also had a few great recommendations on contractors from friends.
Set up your back up space. If the leak was in your kitchen, this is going to be more complicated than if the leak was in your dining room or some other non-essential place. Since our’s was in our kitchen, we set up shop in our garage with a folding table filled with a microwave, hot plate, toaster oven, electric skillet, and Instant Pot. I created a must-have list here of all the essentials we are using for our back up kitchen.
Rethink your space. Once you can assess the damage, start to think how you are going to rebuild. Walk the big box stores and take a look at what’s out there. I was shocked at how fancy kitchen drawers are now compared to the 1979 builder grade cabinets we had.
Start to contact contractors. This process is not fast so get some companies out to give you some preliminary quotes. Get at least 3 quotes for the work that needs to be done.
Have patience. Easier said than done, I realize.
Stay tuned for before and after photos. Perhaps a few posts on how to renovate a kitchen. Leave any kitchen renovation tips or things you’d like to know in the comments!
Keeping a busy family organized and on task is no small feat. There are a million apps and shared calendars and fancy techy ways to do this, but for me, I’m old school. I need to write things down to remember them. I like seeing our week and month come together. So for the last four years, I’ve used the Erin Condren Life Planner. It’s been crucial in keeping my sanity and our family to events on time – especially now that I’m back to work full time.
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Choosing the right planner
When I was shopping around for a planner to use to keep our family organized, I knew I wanted something that was paper and that I could customize in some way. The Erin Condren Life Planner allows me to structure my weeks either horizontally or vertically. The first two years, I used the horizontal layout and then switched to the vertical layout and it works so well for us.
I loved the variety of colors and choices and that I could customize it with our family name or the year or both. The spiral bound pages make it easy and durable to flip back and forth between weeks and months. The Life Planner comes with a few pages of fun and functional stickers but Erin Condren also offers additional accessories to make the planner even more effective.
This year I ordered the large sticky pocket and the additional sticker book. It’s so fun and festive.
Organizing your Life Planner
The first thing I do each year I get my new Life Planner is to transfer all of our birthday’s and anniversaries – and any other date that don’t change each year.
Then I’ll add stickers to each of my own payday’s as well as the day’s that we pay our nanny. This gives me a quick visual of some big ins and outs of our checking account.
Next, I grab the school calendar and put in all the important dates and closures for the rest of the school year. Then I had a minor panic attack that my baby girl is starting Kindergarten this year and our worlds are going to change! Ah!
Finally, I put in all of our goals for the year in the boxes at the front of the planner. This helps me keep them top of mind and also allows me to track my progress during the year. I make all of our goals SMART goals. You can read more about them in my goal setting post from last year.
Life Planner Weekly
Now that the months are set up with big dates, I start in on January and transfer those dates into the week view pages. Since I use the vertical layout, I use the first two boxes to keep track of day and evening events. In year’s past, I’ve used the last box to plan out our meals. This year, I’m using that space for our nanny to leave notes on activities and milestones each day.
For meal planning, I’ve started using the meal planner from Simple Purposeful Living. I’ve been using it for a month now and I love the organization and functionality of it.
I also go back and write down things that we did or milestones that happened in the week layout. It helps me remember things and it’s also fun to have a book to look back on and see all the fun things we did as a family.