So, you’ve had a house fire— as scary as it has been, you’ve managed to contact your insurance and local fire & water restoration experts in Greenville, NC, but what’s next? There’s so much to do. Some stuff is ruined, some are salvageable, some the fire didn’t even touch. You hear the insurance agent say you need to inventory and you need to decide next steps, but you don’t even know what those are. As experts in fire restoration, at 24 Restore, we’ve been there. From our years of experience, we want to provide some key next steps that you can take. Here are 3 things you can do.
1. Secure Your Records
Of course, every situation is different but get your records as best you can. Bank account statements, social security cards, birth certificates, and other important documents. If they aren’t ruined or impossible to get to, get them while you can. Before a fire happens, it’s actually a great idea to save all important receipts in a metal fireproof box or in a storage facility off the premises, such as a safety deposit box. Even better, scan important documents and put the USB drive on your keyring. That way you’ll always have them with you. Or, if that makes you nervous, a safety deposit box is a great place to put that drive.
2. Separate Damaged from Undamaged Items
The insurance company is going to need an inventory list from you. Separating your damaged property from your undamaged property will make it a whole lot easier for you to make a list of your damaged items. Remember that this list needs to include the date you purchased each item, the brand name, the price you paid, and the serial number, model, or description of each item. If the item was a gift, be sure to indicate that as well. If the receipts were destroyed in the fire, or you didn’t keep any receipts, don’t worry— you can request copies of prior bank statements. Also, keep in mind that photos of any damaged items are helpful if receipts are not available. This will help whoever does the fire & water restoration of your items in Greenville, NC.
3. Find a Safe Place to Go
Most homeowner’s policies include coverage for “Loss of Use or Loss of Rents”.This will pay for food, clothing, and shelter that you and your family may need for the time being. Keep in mind that your policy will pay for “like kind and quality” living arrangements. You may want to save shelling out for a fancy hotel for a special occasion and instead stay in a more reasonably priced hotel.
In addition, don’t keep the disaster to yourself. More than a safe place physically, let your friends and family in to help you. It will be great to have a network of people that can assist you in this horrible time. You don’t have to go it alone.
After a house fire, it’s a tough road ahead. Though by taking some of those steps and setting up a network of people to help you, it doesn’t have to be as hard. We at 24 Restore would love it if you would let us help you as well. With our 16 years of experience with fire & water restoration in Greenville, NC, we can help restore your most prized possessions and help you get back in your home as soon as possible. If you want to get started or have any questions, contact us.