The remains of a kitchen house fire.

A house fire is one of the most traumatic things you could endure as a homeowner. Though you and your loved ones may escape safely, you may still suffer major losses in the wake of the blaze.

From the destruction of beloved heirlooms and memories to the very tangible damage done to your property, fire is a cruel element. Life after a house fire is never the same. And staying in your home after a fire might not be the right move for you.

If you’re looking to sell a fire-damaged house, you’ve got a lot of thinking to do first. Here are the key steps you should take.

What Now?

The first thing you should do after the fire is contained is contact your homeowner’s insurance company. Ask to speak with someone who can help you understand your benefits and assist you in figuring out all of your options for moving forward. Your agent can help set you up with temporary lodging and food assistance as well if needed.

You’ll also want to involve a restoration company. Cleaning up soot and ash is one thing, but the water used to put out the flames can do major damage to your home. Water damage needs to be addressed ASAP, so ask your insurance agent to help you find someone right away.

Mr. Fix-It

If you can afford to do it, it might be best for you to make repairs to your home before thinking about selling. Depending upon the extent of the damage, it could be something you can handle on your own or with the help of friends and family. If there is no structural damage, it might only cost a few thousand dollars to repair.

If the damage is more significant or structural, hopefully, your insurance will help cushion the blow and keep the out-of-pocket expenses on the lower end. Repairing the damage the fire caused will make your home easier to sell. It’s highly likely it will help you fetch a higher sale price as well.

Find a Buyer

If you’re not able to make the repairs, whether because of finances, lackluster insurance benefits, or time constraints, that doesn’t mean you can’t still sell your house. Finding the right buyer for a home with fire damage can be tricky, though. The traditional real estate market isn’t usually kind to less-than-perfect homes; chances are it will sit on the market for quite some time before you get any serious interest from potential buyers.

Cash homebuying companies, however, are in a unique spot to rehabilitate damaged properties and are likely your most promising avenue. The industry is rife with scammers, though, so make sure to do your research and find a reputable buyer before engaging further. Look for positive, detailed online reviews, and check in with the Better Business Bureau to verify they’re on the up and up.

Selling a home is almost always an emotional experience, but it’s even more so when you’ve just gone through something as horrific as a fire. When you sell a fire-damaged house, the real benefit is not the money—it’s the peace of mind that comes from putting the fire behind you, moving on, and making a fresh start. If you’re ready to sell your house after a fire, call the Meridian Trust team and get a cash offer today.

It starts out small. It’s the tiny hairline crack in the wall that’s barely noticeable. Or the door that just doesn’t seem to want to close quite right anymore. And then you find yourself thinking, “Is the floor sloping there?” No, certainly not! Your eyes must be playing tricks on you, right?

Unfortunately, this nightmare becomes a reality for many homeowners when they realize their property is suffering from foundation issues. There are a few telltale signs that will let you know you’re dealing with a compromised foundation.

1. External Zigzag Cracking

You may be able to see cracks on the exterior of your home’s foundation. All homes settle over time, so small fissures aren’t necessarily an indication of major shifting. But if you see that the cracks are in a classic stair step or zigzag pattern, structural movement has taken place.

2. Wall and Floor Cracks

Whether it’s in your drywall or your tile, if you notice multiple areas of fracturing along your floors and walls, you may be in trouble. Drywall often cracks at an angle near window casings—indicators of the stress your home is under from being pulled in opposing directions. Tile tends to show stress fractures in a row or line, signaling that a portion of the floor is unlevel.

3. Improperly Fitting Doors

Florida is a humid environment. It’s common in the summer for doors to swell a bit and not fit their frames as fluidly as in the winter. But if you’re constantly having issues with doors (or windows) that just seem “off” year-round, it’s time to consider there may be a deeper problem. If you have double doors that don’t meet correctly, or you’re seeing shafts of light you never noticed before below or above doors, an unstable foundation may be the culprit.

4. Sagging Floors

Got a room in your house that feels like a trampoline? Can you roll your dog’s tennis ball across the floor and watch as it rolls downhill? Sagging and uneven floors are not just ugly—they’re dangerous. They are tripping hazards for children, the elderly, and anyone with mobility challenges. They are also one of the strongest indicators that your home is suffering serious foundation movement.

Fix It or Forget It?

If you’re seeing any of these red flag foundation issues with your Florida home, it’s time to address them. DIY repairs are usually not a good idea. While you might think you can handle it on your own, foundation issues are a massive, complex undertaking. Putting a Band-Aid on them may only exacerbate the underlying issues, further complicating repairs.

Prepare for repair costs to be substantial. You should get multiple quotes from verified contractors as well. This is not the kind of work you want someone to do cheaply! Depending on the extent of the damage and the suggested path for remediation, you could be looking at anywhere from $2,000 to $50,000 to get yourself back on track.

What if you’re not in a place where you can take that kind of financial risk? What if it simply doesn’t feel worth it to you to put that kind of time, energy, and money into repairing your home? You have other options!

Selling a house with foundation issues isn’t easy when you go through traditional real estate channels. Potential buyers may be turned off by the prospect of undergoing significant repairs just after buying a new home, or they may demand that the problems be fixed before they’ll sign the papers.

If you want to bypass all the headaches and sell your Florida house with foundation issues quickly, the Meridian Trust team is here for you. We will walk you through our simple process to sell your home with foundation issues smoothly and easily, for cash. Contact us today so that we can help you quickly sell your home for cash in Florida.