Our lives were turned upside down the morning of June 31st. It all started with a call from my alarm company while I was driving to work. They said that the alarm had alerted them to a forced entry and that they had dispatched the police, but they were notified that a fire was at our house and she would transfer me over to the fire chief. Driving while talking to a fire chief about my house being on fire is not the way I would have wanted to start my day. I ran in to work, told them I had to leave, called Sheldon to tell him what was going on and that I would meet him at the house as soon as I could get there. Of course while on the phone with them, they didn't tell me how bad the fire was, just that it was in the attic, they had put it out, and that both of the dogs were perfectly safe.
I got home and was told that the house was hit by lightning during the storm before and the room smouldered until the next morning where it caught some oxygen and started the fire. A neighbor called the fire department and told them we had dogs which pretty much saved our house and our pups since no one was home. We were given a tour of the property. It wasn't as bad as it could have been. Our house didn't burn down, but it was really hard to see any part of our home in shambles.
The dining room ceiling fell about 5 hours after the fire department left. The pictures are crappy iPhone photos. I only took a few because my asthma didn't really allow me to spend much time in the house after the incident.
The next 24 hours were a blur of information and phone calls. Everytime I turned around I had someone else's business card in my hand. Thankfully everyone we have encountered so far from the fire chief to the cleaning crew our insurance agent brought in has been amazing. Homeowners' insurance is a great thing. We haven't really had to do anything yet, which is good because I was in shock for days afterwards.
It has been two weeks now and things are going OK. Our house has been completely emptied for cleaning. When there is a fire where most of the house only gets smoke damage a restoration company will inventory every thing, box it up and take it to their facilities to be cleaned and stored until the house is habitable again. I'm getting flash backs of our robbery experience because we are learning so much about things we have never had to deal with before. Everything in the house had either been damaged from water or smoke, so we only had the clothes on our back and a few things that were in our cars. We have some amazing friends that have housed us while we were waiting to hear from the adjuster. Our local adjuster got us set up with a temporary housing company that set us up in a nice hotel while we waited for our temporary apartment. Again, we haven't had to pay for anything or do anything on our own for which we are really very lucky!
We moved in to our furnished apartment this morning and now I feel much better. I'm not living in insurance limbo and we have a place to call home for the next couple of months. We have a contractor and our house will soon be on the mend. Now that we're settled and have consistent internet I will probably start blogging some again. It's weird to be living with so little, but also refreshing. It makes me ready to get rid of a lot of the useless stuff that was in our house and start anew. I mean after all of this we're basically going to have a new home to move in to and why would we want to just bring in a whole bunch of stuff to trash it?