In a perfect world, you would never burn the turkey, the fireplace logs would never spark, and you would never forget the curling iron. In reality, your home is at risk for a fire. Although you can’t predict or prevent every disaster, we at Restore More in Racine would like to introduce three ways you can prepare for the worst.
Keep An Inventory List
Keeping track of all your stuff can be a tedious process – kind of like fire damage cleanup. However, the time that you take now to assess and organize your home inventory will be so valuable if you suffer a fire or another disaster in the home. Having a detailed inventory with pictures and values of your belongings will make the claims process much easier and faster.
If you own your house, your homeowner’s insurance typically protects your belongings if destroyed by a covered peril. Renters need to buy their own policy, separate from the landlord’s policy on the building. Having an up-to-date home inventory will help you get your insurance claim settled faster, verify losses for your income tax return and help you purchase the correct amount of insurance.
You can go low tech (paper and pencil), take a video or photos with your cell phone, or purchase an app to help you save the information. Save a copy to the cloud for another layer of safety.
Organize Your Documents
What should you store in a fire safe? In your bank in the safe deposit box? At your mother- in -law’s house? It’s important to make sure your important documents aren’t lost in fire damage and the cleanup process. Plan ahead and determine the best location for :
Handle burnt money as little as possible. Try to place each bill or part of a bill in plastic wrap to help preserve it. If money is only partly burnt and at least half is still OK, you can take it to your regional Federal Reserve Bank to get it replaced. Ask your bank for instructions.
Begin saving receipts for any money that you spend related to the fire loss. The receipts may be needed later by the insurance company and to prove any losses claimed on your income tax. Check with an accountant or the IRS about special benefits for people recovering from fire loss.
Maintain (Or Upgrade) Your Fire Detectors
Installing smoke detectors is a great way to protect yourself from a fire. But they only work when the batteries work and when they are located correctly. You should have one for each level, near each sleeping area, in the kitchen and perhaps in additional living spaces.
Fire research has demonstrated that with today’s modern furnishings, fires can spread much more rapidly than in the past when more natural materials were used. Imagine having to clean up after this fire damage disaster. Because of this risk of fast-spreading, having a sufficient number of properly located smoke alarms is essential to maximize available escape time.
The original units that came with your house are probably a few steps behind today’s technology to upgrade. Consider three kinds of smoke detectors: photoelectric, ionization, or a combination of the two: a dual sensor. Photoelectric ones are better at picking up slow-building, smoldering fires, like one resulting from a lit cigarette. Ionization detectors quickly note sudden combustible fires with high flames, like a grease fire. For the best protection and safety, choose the dual sensor.
More than just qualified, certified and customer-centric, RestoreMore is your business neighbor and community partner. Contact us for quality fire damage cleanup services.