Contact your Insurance Company or Agent as soon as possible after a fire. They will provide assistance on topics such as temporary accommodations, property restoration, inventory damage assessment and contaminated food. If you are renting or leasing property, contact the owner as well.
Avoid moving, removing or throwing out any items, unless necessary, until after the adjuster has seen the property “as is” and an inventory of damaged goods is made and provided to your insurance company.
If you are the property owner/landlord, the insurance only covers the property itself. It does not cover neighbours’ or tenants’ personal belongings or if items are stolen, damaged or destroyed. If a neighbour’s residence is also affected by the fire, each property owner must contact their owner insurance provider.
If you are renting or leasing, do not assume you are covered by the owner’s insurance. In most cases, the tenant is obliged to provide his/her own coverage that covers valuables, furniture and most personal items. Tenants insurance also provides liability coverage in case someone gets hurt while in your home or if you unintentionally injure someone or damage their property.
If you do not have your own tenant’s policy, check with the property owner. In some instances, there may be insurance coverage included in the lease. Take nothing for granted; it could cost you money.
The Insurance Bureau of Canada has advised Edmonton Fire Rescue Services that most homeowners and tenants insurance will pay for reasonable additional living expenses if your premises are unfit for occupancy or you have to move out while repairs be being made, because of the fire. Keep your receipts for all expense incurred as a result of the fire for review by the adjusters. Reimbursement limits will vary from company to company.
It is the responsibility of the occupant to secure the property as well as possible after the fire, to prevent further loss. Your adjuster, once contacted, can assist you in this regard. If you are unable to contact your insurance company, professional contractors can help.