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What Should I Do If My Home Is Damaged in a Wildfire?

Dan Brian   |  December 7, 2016   |  

Recently, we’ve witnessed how devastating wildfires can be as our neighbors in Tennessee have had to deal with blazes throughout Gatlinburg. Making sure you, your loved ones and pets escape a wildfire safe and sound is obviously priority number one. However, beyond that, if a wildfire happens near your home or business, it is important that you get the help you need to repair or replace any property damaged in the wildfire.

Tips for Homeowners If Their Home Was Damaged in a Wildfire

The Insurance Information Institute (III) provides information about how homeowner insurance may work if your home is damaged in a wildfire, including:

  • Will my insurance company pay for my house to be rebuilt if it burns down in a wildfire? In general, if your homeowner insurance covers fire damage, your insurance company should pay for your home to be rebuilt if it burns down in a wildfire. In addition, if your home is only damaged in the wildfire, your insurer should pay for repairs.
  • Do homeowner insurance policies cover the contents of my home if they are damaged or destroyed in a wildfire? In many cases, a homeowner insurance policy should cover the repair or replacement of property damaged or destroyed in a wildfire, including tool sheds, clothes, furniture and appliances.
  • Will my homeowner insurance provide me and my family with a place to live until our home is repaired or rebuilt after the wildfire? Depending on the coverages provided in your homeowner’s insurance policy, your homeowner insurance company should pay for you and your family to stay in temporary housing, such as a hotel, while your home is being repaired or rebuilt after the wildfire. In addition, your insurer may also pay for you to buy other personal property lost in the fire, like clothing, while you wait to return to your home.

It’s important that if your home is damaged or destroyed in a wildfire that you speak with a qualified and experienced personal injury attorney about your homeowner’s insurance policy. An experienced lawyer can review your policy and determine what your insurance company should be providing you following the wildfire. If possible, it would be a good idea to have an attorney review your policy before you agree to it, so that you can make sure you and your family are fully covered in the event of a disaster.

Has your home ever been damaged due to a fire? If so, were you able to have your home repaired or rebuilt? Tell us about your experience in our blog’s section or on our Facebook, Twitter or Google+ pages.