From personal experience.
  1. Whatever isn't ruined by fire, is ruined by smoke.
    Everything will be covered in soot. 80% of the things you find unburned will still have to be thrown away.
  2. You are responsible for cleaning everything.
    Emptying the place out before demolition/rebuilding sucks. You have a lot more junk than you think you do.
  3. Everyone in town will hear about it and call you for juicy details.
    You haven't heard from them in 6 years but they call and ask "what happened?".. The day of the fire. Before you even know "what happened" yourself.
  4. People who you have never met before will treat your house fire like a cool museum.
    Strangers pulling up to your house before you've even seen what is salvageable saying "can we come in and look?" ... Umm no you can't.
  5. As interesting as it is at first, people will soon forget, and expect you to forget too.
    It was cool news for a week, and everybody gave you their sympathy. But a couple months later they don't wanna hear about how hard it still is. Your home burning is old news and they have moved on to a new tragedy. When they realize that you are unable to bounce back so quickly, they will avoid you. Leave you sitting in the smoke.
  6. Starting from scratch is the hardest thing you will ever do.
    Can you even imagine waking up one morning on your moms couch and everything you owned including your home.. Almost all the stuff you've accumulated through the years is gone. And you have no money to replace it. And the money isn't coming. You just have to start over.
  7. Life goes on hold.
    All the plans we had made for the foreseeable future just got canceled; can't go anywhere can't do anything till we have a house.
  8. You realize how much 5,000 dollars is.
    I didn't really grasp how valuable that could be. Or how hard it is to get that much money together. Before, we lived check to check and never needed a big bulk of money at one time. if someone had told me they needed 5,000 dollars I would have been like "okay, save money, you'll have it in no time.".. But now that we need 6,000 for a down payment to have a home again, we are trying so hard but can't make progress. It sucks. It seems like such a small amount.
  9. You have nowhere to go but up.
    On the worst days I tell myself that this will probably be the worst thing to happen to us. And that means every year after this will be better.