When a fire destroys your home, it is heartbreaking and overwhelming for you as a homeowner. But seeing the amount of cleanup you have to perform is even more stressful, especially when dealing with extensive damage.
But while the prospect of cleanup feels overwhelming, knowing what to expect during this process can lessen the stress you’re feeling. Knowing what you can do during and expect from this process helps you set and manage expectations while giving you a sense of direction. After all, the last thing you want is to panic and worry over every detail.
Allowing Yourself to Process Your Emotions is Good For Your Mental Health
Seeing your home ravaged by fire is one of the most difficult experiences anyone can face. During this stressful time, you may think that you have to stay calm to retain some semblance of control. But remember that you don’t have to keep it in. Instead, allow yourself to feel your emotions and grieve this loss. Take time to process your feelings and everything that has happened.
Although it may feel that you’ve lost everything, know that you will be able to recover in time.
Calling Your Insurance Company is the First Step to Recovery
After your initial call to 911, the next call you make should be to your insurance provider. Fire damage removal and cleanup are lengthy, so you may need professional assistance to get it done faster. The sooner you let them know about what is happening, the quicker you can initiate this process.
In some cases, you may need to secure authorization from your insurance provider before you can enlist professional help. This is so you can get a clearer idea about the services and damages covered by your policy.
Once you have been given the go-ahead signal, you can then tap the services of a local fire damage restoration company. Meanwhile, your insurance provider will dispatch a claims adjuster to evaluate the extent of the damage.
Insurers Will Only Cover Initial Damage
Your homeowners’ insurance policy will cover the cost of repairs and restoration of your property. However, this only applies to the initial damage caused by the fire and will not extend to any loss of property once it has been extinguished.
Essentially, the insurance company will only pay for damages caused until the flames have been extinguished. This includes:
- Parts of your property consumed by fire
- The resulting water damage caused by the fire department’s use of water
- Any breakage caused by the entry of firefighters, such as the smashing of windows and breaking of doors
In this sense, take mitigating measures to prevent further damage to your property as soon as the fire department deems it safe. For example, board up broken windows, lock all entryways, and seal leaks in your ceiling and windows. You can also work with a professional Austin fire damage cleanup service to make this process easier.
Documenting the Damage Strengthens Your Insurance Claim
Supporting documents can strengthen your insurance claim. Any documentation you can present, such as an affidavit from the Fire Department Chief and photos of the damage, can help paint a more accurate picture of the incident. Present these with the insurance adjuster to aid their investigation.
The Actual Damage Extends Beyond the Fire Itself
Fire and smoke are two obvious hazards of any disaster involving fire. But while documenting the damage to your property, you should know that there are other health and safety risks you need to look out for. For instance, even after the flames have been extinguished, burnt wood can still give off fumes that can irritate your lungs. Other health hazards to watch out for include:
- Corrosive soot residue
- Residual smoke
- Toxic volatile organic compounds (VOCs)
- Exposed wires
- Slipping risks due to standing water
- Falling debris
Set Realistic Expectations on the Timeline For Fire Damage Restoration
Seeing your property in its current state after a fire can be disheartening as it serves as a grim reminder of your loss. Although the priority is to help you forget this horrible sight and complete the process of fire damage removal in as little time as possible, realistically, it may take longer than you would like.
Manage your expectations to alleviate some of the stress you feel. If you’re doing cleanup DIY-style, it helps to take it one day at a time and trust the process. Prioritize whatever needs to be done on a daily basis and act swiftly without rushing anything. Eventually, everything will start returning to normal, and your normal lifestyle will be restored.
Calling the Right Austin Fire Damage Cleanup Company Makes the Restoration Process More Seamless
Alternatively, enlisting the help of a professional fire damage removal and restoration company can help you restore normalcy in your life in less time. Experienced fire damage restoration professionals understand what needs to be done while taking extra care to mitigate the damage to your property.
Restore your property to its pre-loss condition. For an Austin fire damage cleanup, call Restoration 1 of Austin today!