3-Alarm Fire!

Fire in Layton Apartment Complex

Image Courtesy of KSL-TV

Earlier this year, there was a fire at an apartment complex in Layton Utah. It displaced 23 families and caused an estimated $2 million in damage. Fire fighters still aren’t entirely certain what caused the fire, but the cause really doesn’t matter. What matters is the families who now have to begin the hard process of replacing what they’ve lost.

The Importance of Insurance

If you’ve had a fire, insurance will help a lot. Unfortunately, of the 23 people who lost property in that fire, only 3 had insurance. The rest were left to replace their possessions out of their own pocket while also trying to find a place to live until their apartment could be repaired. It’s always sad to hear this, but there’s not much you can do if you aren’t insured.

There’s no reason not to have personal property insurance. Most people think fires will never happen to them. After all, they’re smart, they don’t make mistakes like leaving the oven on, or putting to many plugs into one socket. But if you’re living in an apartment, it doesn’t matter. Even if you are smart enough to avoid those mistakes and lucky enough to never slip up, you’ve also got to worry about the other people sharing the complex with you. Can you be sure they’ll never slip up either?

Furthermore, most apartment complexes charge more for rent if you don’t have property insurance. They will often make you sign a waiver saying that if there is a fire, they’re not liable for any of your lost/destroyed property. This charge can be $10-$15 extra per month. While that may not seem like much, a basic property insurance policy usually only costs $10-$15 per month anyway. On average, these policies can pay out as much as $15,000. So, if you’re going to pay the extra money anyway, why not get property insurance?

What If You Don’t Live in an Apartment?

So, maybe you live in a home that you own. Surely it’s okay not to have insurance then, right? Well, maybe, maybe not. You certainly have more control over what goes on in your home than in an apartment complex, but is it a risk you want to take? It only takes one mistake to lose everything.

What if you want to renovate your house? You can’t very well renovate your house with all your furniture and possessions in it. You’ll have to take them out and move them to a storage facility. Storage facilities generally cap their coverage at around $1,500, but with a good property coverage policy, that can be up to $100,000 if a fire hits the storage facility.

Not Just Fires

Smoke Damage to toysOkay, so facts are facts. Fires that completely destroy a home and everything in it aren’t very common. Even if a fire does break out, fire fighters can often get to a home fast enough to save a lot of the property. This is especially true if you keep your fire alarms up to date and their batteries fresh. You’re a smart person, you obviously do that.

On the other hand, fire insurance doesn’t just cover damage from fire. It also covers smoke damage. Small kitchen fires are far more common. You only have to walk away from the stovetop for a moment for those eggs to go up in flames. They don’t usually cause a lot of fire damage, though. They might ruin the pan, and maybe singe the roof above them a bit, but it’s nothing that can’t be fixed with good scrubbing and buying a new pan.

However kitchen fires do produce a lot of smoke, especially protein fires. The smoke from these fires leaves behind a nasty residue and because smoke moves to fill up empty spaces, it can get in places you wouldn’t expect. The residue has a highly unpleasant odor that doesn’t wash out with normal cleaning products, so cleaning it gets expensive. Fire insurance will cover this smoke damage, saving you a lot.

Smoke Damage Fixes Versus Complete Replacing Construction

removing all traces of smoke damageIt’s a common misconception that if you have smoke damage in your home, it would be better just to replace everything. When the damage is severe that may be necessary, however it’s far more costly. In most cases, you end up paying for it in insurance premiums or out of pocket expenses. In most cases, simple restoration is far more budget friendly. Here at Alpine, we know how to clean smoke damage. We use ozone chambers to remove the smoke smell from all of your belongings. For the house itself, our non-toxic hydroxyl generators will remove all traces of the smoke damage.

We Work with Your Insurance

Overall it’s just a smart idea to have some personal property insurance, whether you rent, or live in your own home. It makes sure that any fire damage is covered, even if that damage is only residue from smoke. You don’t have to worry about the cost of replacing or repairing and can instead focus on getting back on your feet.

Here at Alpine, we work closely with your insurance company to help you cut through the hassles of filing a claim. We do our best to make sure you get the best possible amount of coverage from them. Don’t be left shouldering the financial burden of a fire by yourself. Get in touch with us and see how we can help you get back on your feet faster. And as fully licensed contractors, we can even rebuild your home. With our no smoke guarantee, you won’t even be able to smell the proof that you suffered a fire. As restoration experts, we can even repair some of the possessions that were damaged.

We’re the best at what we do, so if you have had, or ever have any problems with fire, don’t hesitate to call us.