Suffering from a home fire can be a devastating, emotional experience. Taking account of burned possessions while questioning how this happened to you is not something anyone wants to have to do. On top of all that, there is the added question, “What do I do now?”.
Contact Your Important Resources
The important thing to remember is that you are not alone. Friends and family, your local firefighters, police, and disaster relief organizations are important resources that are here to help. Friends and family provide emotional and financial support. Firefighters let you know if, and when, your home is safe to enter again. Police help protect your property from squatters while it is vacant. The Salvation Army and the American Red Cross, among others, help you find food, fresh clothes, and a place to stay. Lastly, we are here to restore your home.
Call your landlord or mortgage lender and tell them about the fire. As a tenant, you have rights. If you or your guests did not cause the fire, you should not have to pay a dime. While you are getting back on your feet, most homeowner’s insurance policies will cover your mortgage payment, provide a temporary place to stay, and cover the cost of repairs.
Health hazards associated with fire damage are extensive and you must be extremely careful. Your home may have structural damage to walls and floors that jeopardize the integrity of your home, pooling water that carries bacteria and disease, and mold—it is imperative you hire professional restoration services.
The smell and staining associated with smoke damage are obvious, but the effects on your home and health can go much further. Homes are built with a variety of materials that each react differently once exposed to fire. Reactions during the fire may leave behind hazardous chemical byproducts. Soot deposits can be extremely damaging to your lungs and can cause many forms of cancer. Most of what we do, here at AWR Restoration & Cleaning, is clean and disinfect your home to rid it of dangerous contaminants left behind by the fire.
Even though water is one of the best tools to fight fires, it can cause damage in the process. Additionally, pipes may burst during a fire causing further water damage to your property. Fire and water restoration go hand in hand. Walking through water puddles in a burned house can be a serious health hazard, as water picks up the dangerous chemical byproducts of the fire and concentrates them.
Water-soaked floors, walls, and ceilings need to be dried out to avoid future mold growth and may need to be replaced if the damage is irreparable. We, here at AWR Restoration & Cleaning, have encountered these issues plenty of times and are highly trained in mold removal. Additionally, water can damage seals and caulking around your water appliances, as well as electrical components.
After a home fire, feelings of uncertainty or doubt are normal. It is an overwhelming experience; however, taking fire and water restoration step by step makes it more manageable.
If you or a loved one are ever affected by a fire in the greater Seattle area, call AWR Restoration & Cleaning at (206) 823-2252 or contact us online.