Having a fire in or near your home is something you never want to experience. The effects of a house fire go far beyond the common conception of tangible property loss. You might have experienced traumatic events that came about due to the fire. The effects of a house fire are lingering and often difficult to understand for those on the outside.
The fire itself will destroy nearly everything it comes in contact with. You may need to replace draperies, wooden furniture, electrical appliances and have parts, if not all, of the home rebuilt. Smoke from a fire is equally damaging since it can spread into parts of the home you might not imagine. You will need to clean out cabinets, closets, the basement and the attic thoroughly to remove all traces of the fire and smoke.
Whether you experienced the fire first hand, or arrived home after the fire took place, you will most likely go through emotional stress. The stress can come from losing your material possessions, from the loss of a loved one, or from being inside the home while trying to escape for your life. These stresses can trigger doubt and fear, making it almost impossible to return to work or school. The emotional pain can show itself physically through muscle cramps, loss of appetite and sleep, and heart palpitations. Under these circumstances, it is wise to seek the help of a professional psychiatrist.
Depending on the nature of your fire and the coverage level of your insurance, you may or may not be covered for all of your losses. If the property was insured for less than what was damaged, you might have to contribute the difference to replace the items you lost. Also, the insurance company may have a consultant come in and value the home, while arranging for a cleaning service to come if necessary. Once you and your family are safe and the fire and police have handled the flames, it is wise to contact your insurance agent. The sooner you file a claim, the quicker you can move on in a clean and sturdy home.
- Photo Credit Front view of an old fire truck in front of a fire station image by Alexey Stiop from Fotolia.com