When a disaster such as a fire strikes, it can leave you devastated. However, when no one is hurt, you are relieved and grateful. The only thing left to worry about afterward is how to put everything back together. This process can be overwhelming; from the damaged roof, water-soaked carpets, non-functioning air conditioning, to interiors which need an overhaul; not knowing where to start can be overwhelming. Here are seven critical steps that can guide you when rebuilding your home.
1. Contact the Insurance Company
If you have home insurance, contact them immediately. When you talk to them, make sure that you understand what is covered. Save all your emails and exchanges. All communications with your insurer should be well-documented.
2. Secure the Property
Make sure that the house is secure to avoid vandalism or interference with the scene, especially before the damage and loss assessment.
3. Locate Temporary Housing
You may opt to stay with friends or family or find an apartment complex that offers special rates for those displaced by disasters.
4. Get an Independent Professional Damage Assessment
Get a second opinion on the damage from a third party. Insurer damage assessment may not be enough, as some of them are known to lowball clients. Get someone qualified to obtain an accurate evaluation of the damage to make sure your interests are taken care of. They can tell you what should be done, whether it’s demolishing, rebuilding, or repairing.
5. Consider Your Policy Limit
Be honest with yourself and your insurance agent when you ascertain what costs are covered and what additional ones may be incurred. Once you have established what needs to be done, get quotes from home builders and consider factors such as qualifications, experience in home rebuilding after fire, among others. Select one who will give you value for money and quality work.
6. Hire Your Contractor
Once you have found your contractor, draw up an agreement. Vacaville Fire rebuilding contractors can only ask for ten percent of the cost or US$1,000(whichever is greater) as a down payment, as stipulated in California laws.
7. Document Everything
Documentation of the entire process is necessary. It will give you an indication of the rebuilding cost as well as proof, in case any dispute arises with your insurer.
Follow these steps and rebuild your home after the fire with no worries.