Once the fire department disappears and you begin taking stock of the damage, it's tough…
For homeowners, a home fire is one of the most traumatic and stressful events they will ever experience. In a matter of minutes or even seconds, valuable property, important documents, and priceless memories can be destroyed, leaving many homeowners at a loss for where to start the recovery process.
While most people are aware of the immediate actions to take following a house fire, such as getting to safety and calling 911 and the fire department, few understand how difficult it can be to recover from a home fire and the necessary steps to do so.
At National Catastrophe Restoration Inc., we understand how stressful it is to recover from a traumatic event, which is why we’ve put together a guide on what to do following a house fire to assist you during this difficult time.
5 Things You Should Do After a House Fire
After a house fire, you will most likely feel overwhelmed with sadness, stress, and uncertainty, and understandably so after experiencing such a traumatic incident. While these feelings are normal, it might be difficult to know where to begin and what to do initially after your home has caught fire.
Here are five crucial steps you should take after a house fire to help you get things back to normal as quickly and safely as possible:
- Contact family members
- Call your insurance agent.
- Secure your property
- Create a detailed record of your losses
- Contact a professional restoration company
Contact Family Members
Your first call should be to your family to notify them that you are safe. Additionally, you will also need to find a long-term housing solution. While your insurance company may be able to assist you in finding temporary housing during the restoration process, you may feel more comfortable staying with family in the meantime.
Regardless of the magnitude of the fire or the degree of the damage, when a house fire occurs, restoration can take several months in some circumstances. As a result, finding a long-term housing solution will not only ensure that you get plenty of rest during this difficult time but will also help make the necessary decisions and make the recovery process less stressful.
Call Your Insurance Agent
After you have called 911 and contacted your family members to let them know you’re safe, your next step is to contact your insurance company and connect with an insurance agent to notify them of the incident. Your insurance agent can not only assist you in starting the recovery process, but they will also be able to assist you in filing an insurance claim, restoring your property, and replacing your valuable items.
During the conversation with your insurance agent, be sure to discuss the amount of your insurance deductible and what steps you should take to restore your property. This is a crucial step because it not only initiates the documentation process, but your insurance company will also be able to provide you with a claim number and a potential day and time for a claims adjuster to visit the property to assess the damage.
Be sure to also inquire about the timeline for removing any standing water in your home and protecting your property from outdoor elements and intruders while it is being restored. Your insurance agent or insurance company will also be able to authorize a fire damage restoration company to assist you in restoring your property, which we will discuss more below.
Secure Your Property
In the days following your house fire, while you will not be able to stay there, you must protect it as much as possible from both inclement weather and unauthorized entrance. Secure your home as much as possible by barricading entrances, using plywood to board up windows, doors, or other openings, placing tarps over gaps in the roof or walls to avoid further damage, or building a temporary fence around your property.
Additionally, notify your local police department that your property was recently involved in a house fire and is uninhabitable as a result. They will assist you in protecting your property against intruders while you are away.
Create a Detailed Record of Your Losses
As you begin the recovery process, there will be a lot of details to keep track of, including what valuables were in your house at the time of the fire and any personal information that was lost. While establishing a list of everything you lost in the fire may seem difficult and overwhelming, it’s critical to write down as much detailed information as possible and store all of your information and notes in one secure place.
Be sure also to keep detailed records of any conversations you have with your insurance company and fire damage restoration companies in the event you need to follow up with them or provide additional information.
Contact a Professional Restoration Company
Lastly, it’s critical that you contact a certified and experienced fire damage restoration company to mitigate the damage caused by the fire and restore your home to its original state. Restoration professionals not only can help guide you through the recovery process and advise you on the next steps, but they will also be able to help you overcome any fears you might have.
The restoration company‘s initial efforts are critical in preventing and limiting further damage to your home. The earlier you begin the restoration process, the easier it will be for a restoration company to examine, evaluate, and respond to the fire damage.
Contact National Catastrophe Restoration Inc. for Certified Fire Damage Restoration Services
If you or a loved one have recently experienced a house fire and are unsure of what to do next or need a fire damage restoration company to help you restore your property to its pre-loss condition, National Catastrophe Restoration Inc. is here to help.
At National Catastrophe Restoration Inc., we understand how frightening and unsettling a house fire can be. As a full-service disaster restoration company, you can be confident that our team of highly-trained and certified restoration technicians know all of the necessary steps to take and can guide you through the entire recovery and restoration process.
If you have any questions or want to learn more about our fire damage restoration services, contact National Catastrophe Restoration Inc. today to speak with one of our restoration technicians about how we can help restore your property.