Today is a vent and rage day. Feel free to ignore this post as I just need to get some stuff off my chest, and this is going to be really long.
April 29th, 2014 I came home to a completely burned out shell of a house. I basically had nothing except the clothes on my back, the extra stuff we usually keep in the horse trailer and what ever had been locked away in the shed. House wise that wasn't much. At least all the saddles and horse tack was saved.
So we filed our insurance claim and started getting reimbursement for portion of the house and contents. Unfortunately due to some other bills, and the cost of the new house, we needed to take out a new mortgage even though we'd just paid off the old one in March of 2014.
All was going well, we found a replacement house, the contractor started in on the foundation, the mortgage company started processing the paperwork, the insurance company started processing our claim, and we thought the home company had started building the house.
Everyone keeps saying how it was a good thing we weren't home, and that no one was hurt (except the cat), but We found out a few things during the fire and investigation right after that bothered us.
1. The local dispatcher dispatched the WRONG fire department not once, but TWICE before they finally dispatched the right one the third time despite the correct fire department CALLING into Dispatch to request to be sent because they could see the smoke straight from their bay doors.
2. The fire crews ADMITTED to driving past our gate not just once, but again TWICE because they didn't have maps of the area and didn't think it was the right gate. So they broke into all the neighbors properties trying to find a way to our house but didn't bother with our gate. GRRRR
So if we had been home, we could have done the following:
1. Used the fire extinguisher that was sitting by the front door.
2. Called the dispatcher ourselves and gotten the correct fire department to respond in a timely fashion.
3. Had the gate to the property open and directed firefighters to the correct property.
4. Might have been able to at least save the cat and maybe a few other important items.
So honestly at this point I don't ever want to hear "It's a good thing you weren't home" because I don't believe that.
Anyway there's even more to my ranting and raving. Apparently the insurance company believes that our $75,000 content list that we turned into them is only worth $29,000 and closed our cases even though we were insured for up to $39,000 in contents.
Two lessons learned here:
1. Make sure your content's coverage is updated when you purchase new items or bring in family heirlooms. We didn't so things like Grandma's 300 year old bed and other antiques weren't fully covered.
2. Make sure to double check that you agree to the final payment. Keith thought they were sending him a partial payment and it ended up being what the insurance wanted to give to close the case.
Then there is the mortgage company and the house company.
I told the mortgage company that we needed a construction loan and they indicated that they could do that. But almost a month into the process I found out they'd lied to me and were not doing a construction loan. So the home company had to do an extra construction loan.
The home company told us on May 30th when we signed the agreement and put a 10% deposit of almost $12,000.00 that it would take two weeks to get approved plans back from the state CID and they were supposed to send the plans right away. Unfortunately they just sat on the plans for another couple weeks. So they didn't do anything until they finally got the plans back on July second. An entire month had gone by where they hadn't done any work on my house. By then, the foundation was already completed and is now just waiting for the house to be moved in. Anyway the house company was shut down until July 7th and that is when they finally started working on my house. A total of six full weeks AFTER we put down the deposit. What's even worse is that they can't give me a time frame of when they will have the house ready.
Right now, EVERYTHING and I mean literally EVERYTHING is riding on when the house will be delivered and set up. The foundation contractor can't proceed with anything on his end, the mortgage can't proceed until they get the "occupancy" permit. I can't buy or get furniture, house wares, dishes, or even more clothing until the house gets here because we don't have a place to put it.
Now for the most frustrating and probably stupid on my part thing. People keep asking what they can do to help. We have to tell them "nothing". The reason is because we don't have a place to store anything. People have offered furniture, etc and we've had to turn them down. We are currently living in a 7 ft wide by 20 ft long camper trailer. We barely have room for what's already in there and no room for anything else. The storage shed we already had on the property is full and we had to get a second one for some of the other items. It's still not big enough to store furniture in.
Another reason that I've been turning people down is because I don't want just anything in my new house. This is probably the most stupid thing ever. I'm probably being really selfish at the moment, but when I move in, I want to choose what towels I have, what dishes I buy, etc. I don't want some mish-mash of stuff cluttering up the house. I know that later on I could gather it all up and donate it to some thrift store or charity, but right now, I just don't feel like doing that.
But on the flip side, I really feel like our situation has been ignored. The only way it made the local paper was because one of my co-workers was a friend of the editor of the newspaper. As I watch the local news, though, other cases just make me mad. The local news ran a story about a disabled veteran who's house burned down and he was left with nothing. Yet my house has not one but TWO veterans who are now essentially homeless and our story barely makes a middle page in a tiny, published twice a week community newspaper. Apparently having a job and insurance (even if it doesn't cover everything) is an excuse not to help a family in need based on what I've seen so far. Or maybe I'm just mad that I've lost a lot of things that were important to me and no one else seems to really understand or care. I don't know.
Today, I just want to be mad at everything. Tomorrow, I'll press forward and move on and try to get back to living normally. And hope my house gets delivered soon.