The entire experience of witnessing a house fire is terrifying enough. Imagine if it was your house. Your property and personal belongings burn while you stand powerless, unable to move until the unforgiving flames devour your home and the memories within.
Fortunately, you survived the fire. You may have questions about moving forward and coping after such a traumatic event.
Where do I begin?
Whether the fire was big or small, the damages are always devastating. As the property owner, you should gather your bearings and find a way to claim what is due to you from your insurance provider. You can start by following these steps:
- Find a place to stay temporarily: If the fire significantly destroyed your home, your fire insurance should cover hotel and accommodation expenses.
- Investigate the source of the fire: You will want to know what caused the fire in the first place so that it does not happen again. Your insurance provider will also want to know this when you make a claim. Fires can come from gas leaks, grease fires, candles, Christmas decorations and faulty electrical, aside from a variety of other accidents.
- Identify all the belongings damaged in the fire: You should calculate the value of all the things you lost.
- Determine the exact damages to your property: Insurance companies may try to present you with a low settlement offer, so you should know exactly the extent of the damages before making a claim. There are ways to negotiate their offer. You must be able to estimate the exact amount of your claim.
A house fire can lead to thousands of dollars in repairs and replacements of personal and structural property. The insurance company may overlook these when evaluating damages.
The claim process may be challenging
Your fire insurance company may not be your ally during the claims process. Remember, the more insurance coverage they agree to give, the less profit they make. They may even prolong the release of payment. Thoroughly review your insurance policy and try to negotiate a deal that will be most beneficial to you. Make sure you have all the documents and the evidence to back your claims.