Homeowners deal with storm damage

PALM DESERT, Calif. - While the clean-up continues on roads all around the valley, some valley residents are dealing with damage inside of their homes from the huge storm that hit the valley on Sunday.  

The rain covered the patio of Ricardo Hinojosa's home in Palm Desert.  The water level rose so high it started to creep inside.  "It went from our front living room, reaching the bathroom," said Hinojosa.  "We had to throw towels down."

Even though he started to wipe up the water, it still wasn't enough.  The rain was filling up the patio quickly and threatening to cause more damage.  "We got nervous and just started digging a hole, making the water go in," said Aaron Lebrun.  

Hinojosa's quick action saved his house from major damage, but others were not so lucky.  Several homes in the La Quinta and Indio areas sustained serious damage.  The rain pushed mud and water around the outside and inside of homes.  "You get rain like we had, it just can't keep up with it," said Servpro project manager Aaron Lebrun. "So the water goes somewhere and it's usually into the house."

Lebrun said his emergency response company has been inundated with phone calls.  He also said, it's what homeowners can't see that often causes the most damage.  "Drywall gets wet and soaks up moisture very quickly, but it releases very slowly," said Lebrun.  "Mold likes to grow on the paper of the drywall."  

The repairs can add up and many desert homeowners will have to pay out of pocket, because flood insurance isn't something a lot of people have.  "There's no coverage for flood from rising waters outside in a regular homeowners or renters policy," said Karen Marsh, an agent with Frank Miller State Farm Insurance. 

While Hinojosa stayed dry this time, his close call gave him plenty to think about.  "We'll be more cautions of alerts, weather alerts, floods or whatever," said Hinojosa.  

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