If you own a home or a business, odds are fires are on the lists of your biggest fears. Fire damage can cause colossal problems to a building. They can even cause continuing issues that last for years after the last flame went out.
Cleaning up after a fire is about more than just replacing lost items and opening a few windows. It’s tough to know where to start after a fire, whether it’s a small electrical or cooking fire or the destruction of an entire building. Let’s take a look at what a homeowner or business owner should do after a fire.
Your Health and Safety are Number One
First of all, make sure you, your family members, and your pets are safe. If it is unsafe to stay in your home, stay with family or friends. Contact your insurance agent as soon as possible. You will need to submit a claim to get reimbursed and they can help you fund any immediate needs. You can get a copy of the fire report from your local fire department.
Address Your Finances
Did you lose any important documents or credit cards in the fire? Begin the process of getting those canceled and replaced as soon as you are able. You will also need to stay on top of your bills and loan payments. Remember that even if they are destroyed or damaged, your bank will expect you to keep making mortgage or car payments.
Beginning the Fire Damage Cleanup Process
After the initial shock wears off, you’ll probably be eager to start the cleanup process. Before you begin, think about minimizing the damage. Start by protecting your home from the elements and unlawful entry. For insurance purposes, don’t be too hasty to throw anything away. Be sure to at least take a picture of important or expensive items before tossing them. You should also keep receipts for any spending you do related to the fire, such as purchasing equipment or cleaning supplies. Your insurance company might need them and you may want to report them on your income tax.
As you begin the cleaning process, follow these tips:
- Don’t wipe down or wash fire remnants from walls, ceilings, or other surfaces until you are through the fire damage recovery process. If you are unsure, talk to your insurance agent before you begin
- Do NOT eat or drink in the building while cleanup is underway
- If the weather allows, open the windows, but only in affected areas
- Never use electrical appliances until they have been cleaned and inspected
Cleaning up after a fire is a big job. Proper cleaning is important so that you can return to a safe home or reopen your business. At Royal Renovations, we treat your living area and personal belongings with the best care and restore them to their pre-loss condition. Contact our expert team to learn more.