Steps to the House Fire Recovery Process in Dutchess County
Being prepared in case of a house fire at your Poughkeepsie, Wappingers, Hopewell Junction or Fishkill home is an ideal way to keep yourself and your family safe just in case. Not only is it crucial to plan for the moment flames start, but it’s smart to have an action plan for the recovery process so you’ll know what to expect and feel less overwhelmed.
By being prepared ahead of time, you can significantly reduce your stress that can come with the aftermath of a house fire. While it’s hard to think on if you haven’t been through one before, having a plan truly helps in more ways than you think.
Have an Action Plan for the Fire Recovery Process-
Prepare yourself for what you might expect. You cannot know what your home will look like before you’re permitted to go inside, if at all, but understanding how fire causes damage can help prepare you for what to expect. Not only do flames cause charring on objects they encounter, but smoke and soot are airborne and can damage other parts of the home as well. Some areas could be more of a melted situation, some might have extended into the ceilings or walls. Soft goods like couches, bedding or carpeting might be black and frayed.
Not all, but most fires are put out with water, and a lot of it. Water damage on top of the scorched areas could be alarming to see as well. Dripping from the ceiling, squishy areas or piles of debris, pools or standing water could well be the case. If fire extinguishers were used instead, there will be a chalky, white dust on everything that will be quite difficult to remove by yourself.
No two fires are the same and all materials burn or char differently, be prepared as best as possible that what you’re looking at might not be easy to mentally digest and perhaps some extra time and care should be taken before entering the home or property.
Wait to enter your home. Safety is the top recommendation in the aftermath of a fire. You should never go back into your home before officials deem it safe, as they will need to assess the damage and potentially stabilize the structure to lessen the risk of injury for you and your household. There will be times, depending on the severity of the situation, that you won’t be allowed back inside. If there are items that are detrimental to your daily living, the fire chief or building inspector might be able to help arrange another way to retrieve an item or two by an experienced professional.
Contact your insurance company. Filing an insurance claim as quickly as possible is always recommended so you can start receiving the help you needed immediately. Many insurance carriers have emergency services that can include hotel rooms, food and clothing allowances and other needed tools to get resources coming your way. Keep in mind that every insurance company varies and that means every homeowner’s policy is different. Contacting your insurance company early on is recommended so you know the steps that need to be made and the necessities coming to help.
Document the damages. Staying organized is key to making sure nothing falls through the cracks, especially when it comes to keeping track of your belongings. Take photos of each room, closet, cabinet and drawer and try to create a detailed inventory list so you know exactly what has been impacted by a fire, and be sure to take plenty of photos in case your insurance agent requests them for your claim. Some fire restoration companies, like SERVPRO of Western Dutchess County, have a contents division that specialize in removing, cleaning, restoring, inventorying, packing and storing your personal belongings
Contact your LOCAL restoration company. The stress and emotional trauma that can linger after a house fire is something to take very seriously, and can be long-lasting. Working with a local, seasoned, experienced fire restoration company you can put your faith into will help you during this delicate process, because you will know your home is in qualified, professional hands. Let us handle the work and get you back home and feeling "Like it never even happened."