A fire is unfortunately an awful tragedy that can disturb your daily life for weeks and months. Not only must you clean up the ridiculous mess, but you must deal with all the damage as well. And that means spending money on numerous services: Soot Removal, Trash Disposal, Equipment Rentals, Furniture Restoration, Appliance Restoration, Clothing Restoration, etc.
The costs of fire damage restoration are quite unavoidable. However, you can save yourself plenty of grief by avoiding the extravagant costs associated with manual fire restoration. Instead rely on a professional, full-service restoration company. They already own all the equipment needed to get the job done properly. More importantly, they know exactly what to do and how to do it correctly. This translates to big savings!
Types Of Costs To Expect
We now want to take a look at the primary types of costs you should expect from fire damage restoration.
1. Water Damage Costs
Getting rid of a fire usually involves lots and lots of water, be it from firefighters, fire sprinkler systems or whatnot. Regardless, the water must be extracted and household items must be dried quickly enough so that mold and mildew do not form. Also, any items that suffered water damage will need to be repaired.
2. Soot Removal Costs
The smoke from a fire leaves boatloads of sooty all over the place. Soot stains everything, including carpets, draperies, appliances, clothes, etc. It also leaves a nasty smell. It must be completely removed, and it must be done so quickly. Otherwise, the stains will most likely become permanent, and you don’t want that.
3. Deodorization Costs
Smoke leaves a disgusting, pungent odor in clothes, furniture and carpets, to name a few. This is not just a simple odor that can be removed with a spray. Removing it requires using advanced techniques like ozone treatments, dry cleaning and more. In most cases, the items are removed from your home and treated in a special facility.
4. Surface/Duct Cleaning Costs
Smoke unfortunately also permeates walls, thus becoming trapped not only between walls, but inside HVAC ducts as well. If this isn’t dealt with, the odor of smoke will eventually return to your home, regardless of what else you do. The only way to permanently remove it is through a method known as thermal fogging.
Steps To Take
There are certain steps you must take after a fire if you have homeowner’s insurance. The first one is to simply call the company and report the incident. They will immediately send an adjustor to survey the damage to your home. Based on several factors (value of your home, extent of damage, etc.), the company will decide whether or not to cover the full costs of a fire restoration company.
Avoid moving or cleaning anything until the adjustor surveys your home. First and foremost, you want the adjustor to get an untainted view of the damage. Furthermore, and this may come as a surprise, you could easily wind up actually making things worse. The simple fact is that cleaning and restoration should be left to the professionals.
Lastly, we want to take a look at average restoration prices.
- According to the U.S. Fire Administration, fire damage restoration for a home without fire sprinklers costs on average about $45,000. Compare this to the average cost of repairing a home with fire sprinklers: $2,000.
- Restoring a kitchen that suffers a fairly minimal amount of fire damage usually costs between $2,000 and $5,000. However, restoring a kitchen that suffered lots of damage (imagine there being no fire sprinklers) can easily run between $10,000 and $30,000.
- Repairing a high-end kitchen that suffers just a medium level of damage can cost at least $50,000 to $70,000, if not much more.
The lesson here is that it would bode very well for you to invest in a water sprinkler system for your home. Just having that will by default drastically lower your final fire damage restoration costs. Mind you, keep in mind that there are other factors that will affect the cost — how hot the fire got, how long the fire lasted, the types of materials that were affected, the acidity of the soot and more.
Just remember that all these costs quickly double and triple if you try to do the restoration yourself.