After the fire happened, I planned to take care of the house cleaning myself. I spent every day after work cleaning, I took one afternoon off of work to clean, I spent all day all weekend cleaning and was feeling discouraged by the amount of work that needed to be done. I even planned to clean my couches by myself and then eat the costs to get the carpets cleaned. I hadn't thought about all the other details that were brought up to me later.
When I began, I started with all surfaces and I noticed that even though we got the smoke smell out of the house, when I started cleaning, the smell came back. I had stirred it up cleaning. I cleaned the ceiling fans, the plants, the baseboards, the pictures on the walls, all nick knacks in the house, and what really discouraged me was when I started the upholstery. I cleaned my couches 6 moths prior and I took a picture of what I got out of a single couch. It was then that I spoke with the National Guard.
When I spoke with them, they told me to stop killing myself and get some help - they'd cover the bill. So I called a company called ServePro to come out and give me an estimate. They said that because of the demand from the fire, they were now charging $125 for a "free estimate" and they were rude. I called someone else - Utah Disaster Kleenup. The amount of work I needed done in the house was over $3600 and I the inexperienced consumer went with the bid, not knowing any other options.
Later when I talked to the guard for reimbursement, I found out that Utah Disaster Kleenup was gouging the prices and taking advantage of the situation. I was furious. A woman I spoke with at the guard hired an independent cleaning woman to clean all of her walls, baseboards, and blinds for $500. I did all the work myself. She then broke up the same work I needed done on my house - carpets, upholstery, and airways and vents, with other companies and had more work done for less. I also needed an "air scrubber" which was a gigantic machine to take the smell of smoke out of the house. It worked, but took up the entire living room.
I really learned a lesson with this. I hope I never have to go through anything like this again, but if I do, at least I learned from this experience.
12 hours ago