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The Great Flood Of 2010

on March 23, 2014

I briefly mentioned in my guest room makeover post that we had re-done our finished basement after the “Great Flood of 2010”. We’re coming up on the fourth anniversary of that awful chapter in our lives and I would be lying if I said I didn’t get a little nervous with the snow melt and rain every spring.

It was late March 2010 that it happened. We’d only been in our house, our very first, for about a year and a half. There was record rainfall and snow melt that year. While we’re not technically in a flood zone, that didn’t seem to matter. The next town over was under a warning that the dam might burst, which in turn would have knocked out our town dam.

When it finally happened, Tara had come home from work early and saw the water was up to our bottom step. She called me at work to let me know and, of course, I freaked out. I was home shortly after that and we started immediately going into “what do we do” mode.



Tara’s boss came up and brought his wet/dry vac. We then were able to borrow a sump pump and some PVC pipe from one of Tara’s friends to start getting the water out. Tara’s boss and the two of us started pumping right away and were at it until close to midnight. It was freezing cold water because A) it was March in New England and B) the furnace was out because of the water. The oil company wouldn’t come out to fix the furnace until the water was completely removed from the basement because it was a safety hazard. This meant wearing socks and water shoes to try to keep our feet warm while we were working.

We got up the next morning to get back to it (minus Tara’s boss) and were making some progress until we had a knock at the door. It was the National Guard going door to door telling us we needed to evacuate due to the issue with the dams. Tara’s bosses were SO generous, letting us stay with them and even bring our cat, Boomer, with us even though one of them was allergic to cats! We had to stay there for two days and were finally told we could go home.

We finally got the water out and then the work really began – we needed to knock out the bottom half of the walls where it could have gotten moldy. If you ever want to learn how to fix your house, there is nothing like an emergency to make you quite knowledgable! We were so lucky that Tara’s boss is such a handy guy because he helped us do all the work ourselves.



Once we had gotten all the water out and were working on tearing the walls down, we finally had the oil company come out to repair the furnace. Of course, this didn’t fall under our plan that covered repairs because it was an act of nature. This meant we were out $1100 for them to repair it and get us heat and hot water again! That was a rude awakening. We were lucky though – we were able to get funds from FEMA and a little bit from our insurance to help cover repairs. If we hadn’t done the work ourselves, it wouldn’t have covered it all, but like I said, we got lucky in many ways.



Those rolls were the flooring we decided to install. The basement previously had awful blue carpeting (that was NOT fun to rip out, btw) to go with those half painted red walls. We knew we definitely didn’t want carpeting in case we ever flooded again. Where I worked, we sold athletic equipment and this included rubber gym flooring. I used my awesome discount, we measured out the basement and there we had it. It was definitely a good choice because we get water every so often now.



Here are some other pics and articles about it:






22 responses to “The Great Flood Of 2010

  1. TartanJogger says:

    Oh my goodness, what a mess! You did an amazing job, though, with repairing and decorating it all afterwards, the after pics look great. Fab choice of flooring.

    • Courtney says:

      The flooring was definitely the best part! It was such a mess for weeks on end it felt like we were doing nothing but working all day and then coming home and working all night! Our after pictures are nothing like what it looks like now, but we were in the early stages of home ownership and didn’t have a whole lot of furniture or decorations at that point! LOL

  2. Oh my goodness! What a nightmare! Hopefully they’ve built up those dams so you guys don’t ever have to go through that again!

    • Courtney says:

      The dams never even broke (though they were mighty close to overflow). It was just pure saturation of the ground! We never even found a leak in our foundation. It just seeped in.

  3. What a terrible nightmare!!! I get nervous every year at this time too-our area(not our home) was flooded in 2006. It would not. Stop. Raining. We were lucky but lots of people lost their homes.
    You did a great job remodeling!

  4. Oh my goodness I had the great flood of 2010 too. What are the chances?

  5. Carla says:

    OH MY GOSH!!!
    whatta mess turned into whatttta not.
    you did such an amazing job.

  6. Oh my gosh that is so crazy!! You did an amazing job fixing it up!

  7. Alli says:

    I can’t even imagine…. these types of things are what terrifies me to buy a house! We are renting right now (always have) and while I complain about the landlord’s kids upstairs, and the rent that we’re seemingly just throwing away every month, I will say it is nice to have someone else deal with things like broken refrigerators, flooding, the lawn, etc.

  8. biz319 says:

    Wow – so much work! Yep, that was us last year – frozen ground, thawing snow and rain and a sump pump that failed – we had 8 inches of standing water from the front and back of our house – at least it was water and not sewage though!

  9. Oh no!!!!!!!! That is so terrible!

  10. February/March of 2010 was horrible weather wise for us too. We had flooding, a tree fell on our house and we were without power for 3 days. Oh and I was 6/7 months pregnant! Thankfully we got the very last generator at Home Depot. Otherwise my husband would have been dead!

  11. We also had a tree fall on our house during hurricane Isabele! Our house was only 5 years old and a crane was in my front yard for two days removing it. We are on an acre lot and it was the neighbors tree. The insurance company considered it an act of God so it had to go on our homeowners insurance. Dealing with insurance is NO FUN! Good job on the repairs. Looks beautiful!!

  12. tlsylvan says:

    Man that’s terrible! It’s a good thing that you guys had such good friends/bosses to help with everything! I’d stand there ankle deep in water looking lost…

  13. Oh my goodness, that sounds horrible and I can just imagine how nervous you get every spring with the snow melt. Good job on the DIY!

  14. d20girl says:

    Wow, what a mess! I have these bizarre packing for the apocalypse dreams that got really bad when we had some fires nearby. The specter of the National Guard making me evacuate is terrifying to me… What do you take??? Looks like you guys did a great job making everything better than before and how awesome to have such a great boss! Hope it was a once in a lifetime event!

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