We all know that wildfires can be destructive, but the vast majority of Oregonians are not within the pathway of the actual fires themselves. Instead, most of us are dealing with the effects of wildfire smoke. This smoke can have a significant impact on our health, and experts say that simply being outside is equivalent to smoking a pack of cigarettes when wildfires are at their height. But what about our homes? Can wildfire smoke damage our properties, and what can we do to stop this?
Your first instinct may be to rely on your insurance policy, but this isn’t always as reliable as you might think. You really need to read the fine print of your policy and make sure that you’re covered for this specific type of damage. Even if you are, getting your hands on a settlement can be a challenge. Insurance companies may deny your claim for trivial reasons, and this is when you need to call in a qualified, experienced attorney. Choose a legal expert who specializes in denied insurance claims, and you can give yourself a fighting chance.
Items Can be Affected by Smoke
The items within your home are especially vulnerable to the negative effects of wildfire smoke. Food may be damaged or spoiled by exposure to smoke. In addition, firefighters use certain chemicals to combat the inferno, and these chemicals can also spoil or damage food in your home. Heat is also a contributing factor to spoiled food, even if you are miles away from the nearest blaze. Aside from food, there are a number of additional items that may be damaged by smoke:
- Personal care products
Smoke Damage to Your Home
When you do a walkaround of your house, smoke damage may be obvious. Before you do anything to address this damage, remember to take pictures. In order to file a claim, you’ll need to document the damage before you attempt to clean or repair anything. Smoke damage may have discolored your home, and there may be soot across the surfaces. Concrete can actually crack and falter because of heat exposure and extreme dehydration. Your windows can become severely discolored or even warped. Even plant damage is a serious concern.
On the inside of your home, hardwood flooring may have been affected. Because hardwood floors are porous, smoke particles may infiltrate the wood. This can ruin your floors, and in some cases, they need to be entirely replaced.
Enlist the Help of a Qualified Attorney Today
If you’re dealing with smoke damage or any other type of damage caused by the wildfire, you have every right to file an insurance claim. If you subsequently run into issues with denied claims, get in touch with a qualified attorney in Oregon. These legal professionals can make sure you’re getting the settlement you need and deserve. Book your consultation today.