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5 Steps to Take Immediately After a House Fire

5 Steps to Take Immediately After a House Fire

The Road to Recovery Starts with Planning and Preparation

A house fire can be one of the most traumatic and difficult events that you can experience in your lifetime. Before anything else, it’s important that you and your loved ones evacuate your home, call emergency services, and let your local first responders handle the blaze. Make sure that you and your family are all safe, and that anyone who might need medical attention receives the proper care.

Once the flames have finally been extinguished, you might be left feeling lost, afraid, and unsure of what needs to happen next.

Depending on the extent of the damage, you might be left without a home for weeks. To ensure that you and your loved ones stay safe in the immediate aftermath of a house fire, it’s important to get prepared and come up with an emergency plan beforehand.

At ServiceMaster by Cornerstone, we want to help inform the Cordova community about how to navigate life following a residential fire.

By taking these five steps before and after your home is affected by fire and smoke damage, you can make the following days and weeks a little less stressful for you and your family.

1. Create an Emergency Plan

You should always be proactive about preventing household fires. It’s also smart to create a household emergency action plan to be prepared in case of a blaze. This should include various details such as the contact information for your local first responders, family members, and your insurance company. If possible, pre-select a safe place for you and your family to stay after a fire, such as with relatives or a local hotel or shelter.

It is also wise to choose a meet-up location, at a safe distance from your home, so you can account for everyone in your family in the event of a house fire.

2. Find a Safe Place to Stay and Seek Necessary Care

House fires can happen at any time, and even relatively small kitchen fires can render your home unsafe due to smoke and soot. Making sure that you and your family have a safe place to stay after a fire is essential. If you can’t get a hotel or stay with relatives or friends, check with local disaster relief organizations like the American Red Cross (ARC). They can help you find food, shelter, and other necessities in an emergency.

Ensure that anyone who needs medical attention receives immediate care. Injuries, such as smoke inhalation or emotional trauma, may be visible or obvious. It’s always a good idea to seek proper medical care after a fire to ensure that everyone is physically and mentally okay.

3. Contact Your Insurance Company

Once you’ve safely evacuated your Cordova home and found shelter for you and your family, your next step should be contacting your insurance company immediately. They will walk you through the process of filing a claim and figuring out the next steps. When you trust our team at ServiceMaster by Cornerstone for fire and smoke damage restoration, we’ll also help you navigate the insurance process and get the most out of your claim.

If possible, thoroughly document the damage with photos. However, you should never return to your property or enter your home until it is deemed safe to do so by the relevant authorities.

4. Replace Important Documents

If your house was damaged by a fire, it’s possible that you lost important documents or other items in the blaze. These are not only important to have on hand in general but could come in handy when dealing with insurance companies and emergency personnel.

Examples of important documents you should replace after a fire might include:

  • Birth certificates
  • Driver’s licenses
  • Financial statements
  • Medical records
  • Passports
  • Social security cards

It is wise to invest in a fire-proof safe to store your valuable documents and help you be prepared for a house fire, so you don’t have to go through the trouble of replacing them.

At ServiceMaster by Cornerstone, we understand that some valuable items simply aren’t replaceable. Our restoration technicians are skilled at restoring items back to their original condition and will do so whenever possible to help preserve your sentimental or priceless items.

5. Stay Calm, Be Patient, and Seek Help

House fires are extremely stressful events. In the aftermath of fire and smoke damaging your home, you’ll likely be overwhelmed and experiencing emotional trauma from the loss. Luckily, you never have to endure the stress alone. Even if you don’t have immediate family or friends nearby to help, there are local relief organizations in Cordova that can provide support in a number of ways.

Our local team of restoration professionals will also be there to provide you with reassurance after a blaze. In addition to comprehensive fire and smoke damage restoration services, our team will provide customer support and open communication throughout the process, giving you peace of mind that you’re in the right hands. We’ll help make your home feel like a home again.

If you’ve experienced a fire at your Cordova home, our team is here to help. Contact us online or call us at (901) 459-3675 today.