How To Sell A House With Fire Damage In NJ

Sell A House With Fire DamageWhether big or small, fire can be devastating to a house and the people who live inside of it. Just because your home has fire damage, doesn’t mean it’s unsellable. Unfortunately, many houses are sold after being damaged by a fire. In our latest post, we will offer tips on how to sell a house with fire damage in Union County, NJ!

After dealing with a fire, a homeowner will often feel a bit shell-shocked and overwhelmed. Selling the house is often decided upon to escape traumatizing memories and to allow for a fresh start. Before signing up with a realtor and listing the house on the MLS, there are a few things you should consider first.

To Repair or Not To Repair

Buyers on the MLS typically aren’t looking for fixer-uppers, especially not something with extensive fire damage. If you want to get the house in front of these sorts of buyers, expect to do some of the work first.

When dealing with fire damage, it is important to be prepared for the things you aren’t able to see with the naked eye. You could have structural damage, smoke damage and other problems as a result of the fire.

While insurance will cover many things, however, you will still likely incur expenses you won’t be able to recover. Once your house has been damaged by fire, the repair costs are only the beginning. You will need to pay for the house to be professionally cleaned and inspections to deem the house livable. If you decide to sell your fire-damaged house to us, as-is, the repair costs are factored into the offer.

In some cases, homeowners will opt to tear the house down and start over, or cut their losses, sell the land and move on. Restoration companies might be expensive, but often times their services are worth every penny. They will provide a thorough cleaning and repair of the damaged areas.

Repair Costs

How much will you spend making repairs?  According to HomeAdvisor’s 2018 Fire and Smoke Damage Guide, the national average for repairing fire damage is over $12,000.   But the mid-range extends to $38,000 when consideration is given to water damage, smoke damage, electrical issues, and more.

What does it cost to repair Fire & Smoke damage? What factors affect pricing repairs for fire and smoke damage?

Cleaning Water Damage

Extinguishing a fire in your home requires water – a lot of water.  Firemen may break in your windows and roof – dumping water into the home from multiple hoses and multiple trucks.  While they are working to put out the fire,  their efforts will likely result in additional destruction that you will have to take care of after the fire is extinguished.

The water will ruin drywall and subfloors. It will also result in mold and other contamination if left standing.

  • Carpets and floors are susceptible to mold: expect to pay between $1,000 and $3,900 for mold remediation.
  • Repairing chemical contamination typically costs between $1,000 and $2,500.
  • All the excess and standing water will also require professional de-humidification as soon as possible.
Cleaning & Removing Soot

After the water is cleaned up, it’s time to take care of the soot that may have been caused by the fire.Soot will need to be professionally cleaned.

Generally, this stage of the clean-up will cost between $2,000 and $6,000.

Soot will permeate and damage anything from your upholstered items to your draperies, carpets, and walls, cabinetry, carpet, clothing, ceiling, molding, and more. The longer it is left untreated, the more difficult it will be to restore your home.
The costs can quickly become significant. When is it cheaper to simply throw out the affected items?
Smoke Damage Restoration

Restoring smoke destruction should only begin to enter the equation once water and soot are taken care of.  This step will include getting rid of any unpleasant and harmful odor, which can only be permanent if the initial source of the odor is completely removed.

Like soot, smoke damage gets worse the longer it is left untreated. Its odor can penetrate clothing, furniture, carpets, and a large number of other items in your home. Removing it requires furniture deodorizing, as well as ozone smoke removal and a thorough evaluation of your HVAC system.
Furniture & Textile Deodorizing will cost between $200 and $1,000. This will require different treatments including professional deodorizing, thermal fogging, and/or ozone treatment.
Replacing Everything Else

Denise Supplee, operations director of SparkRental, relayed a message that “The damage you may be seeing by the naked eye is nothing compared to hidden destruction.”

Fire Damaged House NJ
How to sell a fire damaged house in NJ

After the water damage is fixed, the soot is removed and the smoke is cleared – you will need to start repairing/replacing the damaged furniture, fixture and appliances caused by the fire damage.

Did that grease fire destroy your kitchen?  The average replacement cost is between $10,000 and $30,000, with the national average coming in at $23,000!

Did the electrical fire destroy your living room and bedrooms?  The average cost for a contractor to come and re-build is between $150 and $200 per square foot in New Jersey!  Things get expensive quickly.  If you had a 1,000 sqft house you are looking at between $150,000 and $200,000 in expenses!

So, what are your options?

Instead of attempting to list the house on the MLS, you have the option to sell the house to a private buyer such as I Will Buy Your House For Cash. We purchase homes in the Union County area, as-is. We can help with fire damage and other roadblocks sellers find themselves facing.

When you sell directly to us, you won’t have to make a single repair to the house. You will be able to sell it and move on with your life!

Sell Direct

By selling your house directly to a company such as I Will Buy Your House For Cash, you will be able to quickly and easily walk away from the home. We know that you might have painful memories, so we aim to make the process as quick and easy as possible.

We will pay a fair price for your house, calculating the repair costs into our offer. You won’t have to worry about finding a buyer, making repairs or having an inspection because we purchase as-is.

We will take care of everything so you can move on with your life.

Emotional Effects

After dealing with a fire in your house, there is bound to be a wide array of emotions.

Make sure you take the time to fully weigh your options, without rushing into anything.

Get the help you need to handle and emotional distress you might be dealing with.

Then, and only when you are ready, deal with the next steps for your home.

Disclose Everything

If you decide to hire an agent to sell your house, it is critical that you disclose everything. Leaving something out can cost you! It is imperative all potential buyers know the history and condition of the home they are thinking about buying.

Are you ready to sell a Union County house that was damaged by fire? We can help! Send us a message or give us a call today! (908) 341-0891

Real Estate & Fire Damage Infographic


John is owner of, based out of Cranford, NJ. John and his team of cash buyers have bought and sold homes, offices, and land across North Jersey, Central Jersey, and South Jersey.