A house fire can be among the most traumatic and damaging experiences. While taking care of your health and safety first is necessary, there are also many other steps you must take immediately to protect your home and belongings. Or else you may be at risk of experiencing even more financial losses.
Below are five things you should do instantly after a house fire:
1. Call Your Local Fire Department
The first step after a house fire is to contact your local fire department. Make sure the fire is completely extinguished prior to leaving your property, as smoldering embers can reignite and lead to more damage. You should also request a copy of the report generated by the firefighters. This usually contains vital details, such as what led to the blaze in the first place.
This report can be used to file insurance claims and get compensation for any damages sustained. In a lot of cases, firefighters use water to put out the fire. As such, you should be aware of potential damage, like water damage or mold. If you experience any of these problems, get in touch with a professional water removal service.
2. Contact Your Insurance Company
When the fire has been extinguished, the next procedure is to get in touch with your insurance provider. Your insurance provider will send an adjuster to assess the damage and provide you with a settlement for any damages sustained in the fire. The insurance adjuster can also help you identify which materials are salvageable and which need replacing.
Furthermore, they can help guide how to proceed with repairs and restoration after the fire. Some insurance companies can even recommend reliable emergency restoration professionals. If you need such services, seek recommendations from the people around you.
3. Document Everything
If possible, take pictures or video recordings of the damaged areas in your house as soon as possible after the fire. But you need to wait until the firefighters have declared it is risk-free to do so. Photos and videos are necessary for documenting the damage and providing evidence for your insurance claim.
4. Secure Important Documents and Valuables
If it’s safe, try to secure any important documents and valuables that may have survived the fire. This includes passports, birth certificates, insurance policies, and other official documents. Any financial documents should also be protected or replaced as soon as possible. Furthermore, you should inventory any items ruined or destroyed in the fire. Once more, this is crucial for filing insurance claims and receiving compensation.
5. Secure Your Home
You must also secure your house from further damage or burglary. If the house is structurally sound and safe to get in, close all windows, doors, and other openings. Consider deploying temporary fencing to protect the property from vandals and criminals if the house is severely damaged.
If you observe suspicious activities at or around your residence, reach out to your local authorities department to report these. This way, they can check the situation till repair work can be done.
6. Engage Other Professionals to Assess the Damage
If the damage is serious, you should have an expert evaluate it, and websites like www.puroclean.com can help you locate a structural engineer, electrician, plumber, or property damage repair contractor, to assess the damage. They can properly determine what needs to be repaired and replaced to restore your home to its pre-fire condition.
7. Take Care of Yourself and Your Family members
It’s easy to forget about yourself after a terrible event like this. But you should look after yourself and your loved ones throughout recuperation. Reach out for assistance from family, close friends, and community support groups. Get enough rest and seek professional help if you feel overwhelmed.
Dealing with the after-effects of a fire can be too much to handle and stressful. But these ideas can assist you in preparing to face the recovery process. Reach out for help when needed and follow your insurance provider’s directions to make sure you get full compensation for any type of damages incurred. Most importantly, take your time making decisions and obtain professional advice first. This will help ensure everything is done correctly and your house is restored safely.