Tips for Next Steps

Almost all Homeowners Policies include coverage for Additional Living Expenses, commonly called ALE.  This coverage is intended to pay for the additional expenses you will incur while your property is being repaired.  Most people use this coverage to pay for a hotel initially, and then a more permanent rental house.  There are almost always limits, either a dollar or a time limit.  Hotels are expensive, as is eating in restaurants, so it is important to get into a permanent rental situation quickly (and to get the repairs going quickly) so that you don’t run out of ALE coverage.


Save every receipt for every expense after the loss.  Many of these expenses will apply either to your ALE claim, or to your personal property claim.  If you buy clothes to replace those lost or damaged, for example, those expenses will become part of your personal property claim.  And remember, ALE coverage only applies to additional expenses, meaning the difference between the cost of restaurants instead of what you would normally spend eating at home, for example.  So documenting every expense is vitally important.  And be sure to give this information to your accountant at tax time:  There may be a tax deduction available.


Replace any of these documents that were damaged or lost as quickly as you can.  And if any of them remain in the property following the loss, remove them and store them in a safe place.

  • Driver’s license
  • Bankbooks (checking, savings)
  • Wills
  • Medical records
  • Passports
  • Insurance policies
  • Birth, death, and marriage certificates
  • Social Security cards
  • Medicare or Medicaid cards
  • Credit cards
  • Titles to deeds
  • Stocks and bonds
  • Warranties
  • Income tax records
  • Citizenship papers
  • Animal registration papers
  • Mortgage documents

Replace Burned or Damaged Money


Place damaged paper money in a zip-loc bag to preserve it and handle it as little as possible.  You have two options for replacing burned money:

1. If half or more of the money is intact, you can take it to your regional Federal Reserve Bank to get it replaced. Your local bank can provide you with the location of the closest Federal Reserve Bank.

2. You can take burned money to the Post Office and mail it by “registered mail, return mail requested” to:

Department of the Treasury
Bureau of Engraving and Printing
Office of Currency Standards
P.O. Box 37048
Washington, DC  20013


You can take damaged or melted coins to your regional Federal Reserve Bank as well or mail by “registered mail, return receipt requested” to:

Superintendent U.S. Mint
P.O. Box 400
Philadelphia, PA  19105

U.S. Savings Bonds

To replace destroyed U.S. Savings Bonds, obtain the Department of Treasury Form PDF 1048 (I) from your local bank or at and mail it to:

Department of the Treasury
Bureau of the Public Debt
Savings Bonds Operations
P.O. Box 1328
Parkersburg, WV  26106-1328

About Us

At Coast Construction, we offer complete damage repair services to help get your home or business back to normal as quickly as possible after a fire or other disaster.

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Coast Construction