The kitchen fire that damaged the upper floors of one house brought problems to one Birmingham, AL customer, real estate agent Gene Darden: renovate the house in full, or sell the house on fire?
A large number of homeowners face that question. The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) says there have been 357,000 home fires across the country in 2017, resulting in $ 7.7 billion property damage.
Darden, who has ten years of experience and sells homes valued at $ 209,000, has helped homeowners on both sides of the issue. He is in charge of qoutations for investors who buy damaged property to repay as well as homeowners who want to sell to new residents.
“The biggest thing is to remove the stigma by bringing the house back to the state where it was,” he said.
“If you sell it at the investor level, it means very little to deal with, but if you renovate the house and resell it at a fixed level of readiness to go, it will be a completely different process.”
You can sell a fire-damaged house “as it is” for a small refund or repair if you are willing to work with an investor or other buyer who will be waiting for a discount, or will receive cash.
This can be an attractive option if you do not have enough money for homeowner’s insurance or advance payment to make repairs.
If you are looking to restore your home to its former glory, we have drawn experts to help you with everything from dealing with the initial effects of fire to signing final signatures on the sale of your home.
What to do Immediately After the House Burns Down
A fire in a home or business can be very emotionally and financially devastating, leaving people unsure of what to do next.
There is a company with more than 400 locations worldwide that provides mold remediation and repair services for fire damage, water damage, and smoke damage, has a checklist that points to this. Ensuring your safety and that of your loved ones is a priority.
First few steps to take include:
- Obtain permission from the fire department official before re-entering the damaged building.
- Contact the service provider to let them know about the fire and request an emergency closure service.
- Call a homeowners insurance company to begin the claims process.
- Hire a firefighter contractor to inspect the damage, provide a measurement on the beds, and then begin the cleaning process.
- Write down all the property damage with pictures and detailed notes.
- Obtain a copy of the official report from the fire management office or fire investigator regarding the purpose of the insurance.
- Open all windows to remove smoke from the rooms.
- Pour out of the refrigerator if the power is off.
The American Red Cross is focused on providing disaster relief, including after a house fire.
The non-profit agency has detailed guidelines here that include you and your family’s emotional recovery, an important documentation of your financial recovery, and a comprehensive overview of the damage to your home and property, as well as tips for making safe repairs.
5 Steps to Selling a Home with a Fire
We have a five-step guide to selling a home with fire damage in the open market.
1. Restore the home to its original condition (call your homeowner’s insurance agent!)
For your best return on investment, experts recommend completely renovating the home if possible. Remember this: fire damage is expensive
Note that exposure to fire can lead to respiratory problems and other medical problems as fire clean-up can be expensive and difficult, according to Resolve, a partner with Lowes & Alocity Services.
Chronic smoke damage can stain walls and ceilings, leaving odors in crawl areas and affect attic, roof and heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) systems.
fFire damage can also occur by restoring the water loss used to fight fires and removing mold.
For example, a fire can cost an average of $ 3,000 to $ 5,000 to recover, but repairs such as roofing or kitchen cabinet replacement can easily increase the cost by $ 50,000 and more.
The good news: Most homeowners’ insurance policies can cause fire damage for any reason other than a fire, where the property owner intentionally set the house on fire or vacated for more than 30 days. Is.
You Need to Know What Your Homeowners’ Insurance is
Depending on the scope and type of policy, most of your fire damage costs are covered by cash value or revaluation value-added insurance.
Cash value means that your assets will be repaid to you in less time than their value at the time of loss; The re-price covers the cost of replacing the item on comparable content and quality at the time of establishment (higher-level insurance than you paid a higher premium).
Such policies can help pay for damage to structures attached to the main house (sheds, garages, fences), as well as some landscaping.
Also, homeowner’s insurance usually helps pay for living expenses away from their home during such losses, for example, restaurant bills and hotel fees.
You Should Expect a Delay
Your homeowner’s insurance agent or online service directories can help you find renewal companies in your area.
They often give free estimates but are willing to delay. Durand’s client, who owns the house as an investment property, wanted to repair it to restore and repair it, which took longer than expected.
“Smoke damage circulates throughout the home. So, in that particular situation, the investor thought he could save more than himself.”
Your ductworks, your sheetrock … if it’s good. If there is a fire, it will gut the house more because you can renovate and you can dry out… but you cannot quickly remove the smell of fire coming out of the house.
“It’s hard to repeat most of the house, except for foundations and studs and that kind of material, except for a real quickfire.”
Even after becoming irresponsible, some homes destroyed after a fire can fetch a high selling price due to space.
The 1,066-square-foot home shell in San Jose, California sold for more than $ 900,000 in April 2018. According to The Mercury News, a house 5,850 square feet away from where the new complex was supposed to be has been vacant since the fire broke out.
2. Disclosure of Previous Fire Damage to Buyers.
Most state disclosure laws tell you that you have previously been exposed to known fire damage, but as also stated in the “buyer caution”, real estate agents such as Darden recommend you.
“A lot of people are going to know the house is on fire,” he said. “So, the only way to reduce it, sell that house, and get a fair market value for it is to be very comprehensive with the details of what you did to reassemble that house and how you completed it in the code. And the standards apply to any home.”
3. Hang Each Documentation from the Restoration
“A buyer is going to look at the house through a microscope. So, you check your standard and be more prepared for it than you buy.”
Do not document your eyes and cross-crossing everything in the document House That Back to the Speed, Up to Way Down Photos and Payment Invoice. ”
4. Be Prepared for Buyers to Answer any Questions.
Potential buyers are interested in the cause of the fire, as well as what you have done to fix any problems.
From 2012 to 2016, cooking utensils (cooktops, ovens, microwave ovens, grills) were the main cause of domestic construction fires, with 48 percent of them starting, the NFPA said. Other main reasons:
- Heating equipment (chimney, chimney, space heater, furnace, water heater) – 15%
- Power Distribution and Lighting Equipment (Wiring, Lighting, Bulbs, Wires, Plugs, Transformers) – 10%)
- Deliberate cause (shooting) – 8%
- Smoking content – 5%
- Washing machine or dryer – 4%
- Fan or air conditioner – 2%
- Candles – 2%
- Replay from the heat source – 2%
“People are going to ask, want to know, there will be any stigma in the house. Then they will make their assessment on that basis,” Darden said. “If it’s your standard kitchen fire or lightning fire or vent hood, it goes back to the document to show them, ‘Hey, that’s it, and what did we do to make sure it never happened again. ”
5. Do not Try to Start the Process.
Although selling a home after a fire can be stressful, Darden said any real estate transaction can pose questions for potential buyers. It makes it easier for everyone to understand those questions and solve them properly; Letting go of things can be challenging.
“You want me to focus the laser on selling this house in 20 days.”
Let’s talk about everything from point A to point B and in the middle and get a plan for each of them. It’s a lot easier for you, “he said.” If you, do it right, you’ll be able to get market value for your home.