A FAMILY of seven are heartbroken after the home they poured all of their life-savings into burnt to the ground and left nothing behind.
Sabrina and Peter Chadwick were just three weeks away from moving into the new Kent home, which took more than three years to build, when they saw it go up in flames.
The mum-of-five was about to take her kid's school uniform out of the machine but was horrified when she saw smoke coming from inside the utility room.
She told The Sun Online: "My daughter had asked me to wash her uniform, we went to bed after midnight and everything was off but the next day I went in at 9am to get the washing.
"As I got to the corner I saw that there was smoke coming from the utility room and I just knew instantly that I was in big trouble.
"I panicked I couldn't think about if I could put it out, I knew it would be something electrical so hose pipe wasn't an option.
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"I had my 13, one and two-year-old in caravans close by. I rang he fire brigade straight away."
The concerned mum rushed her kids to a field in front of the house and then went back to investigate.
But when she returned to their dream home it had already been engulfed by the blaze.
"I couldn't get anywhere near it for smoke, I couldn't get to the front door I just knew I'd lost everything.
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"Part of me hoped it would be okay, I thought smoke damage wouldn't be the worst but within a couple of minutes I saw flames in the roof tiles.
"It took the fire brigade four to five hours to control it.
"From when I placed the 999 call to them arriving it was 12 minutes, within 12 minutes it was completely going up, flames licking out if the roof."
Firefighters were unable to save the house on Dymchurch Road and the inferno left nothing but a charred structure and ash.
The 34-year-old who runs a beauty salon, and her husband who works as a mechanic, had put around £200,000 into their home renovation project, sacrificing holidays and luxuries for years.
It had "dominated" their children's lives as they went without playdates and proper Christmases while the family lived in a caravan throughout the remodel.
"We are utterly broken. This really hasn’t been your normal self build, my husband has built this house single-handedly, to save on labour costs, looking at every single burnt rafter knowing he's been out there day in day out come sunshine or snow.
"Our poor babies have sacrificed any type of normality for 3.5 years, we are totally destroyed.
"We've sacrificed everything for it, with insurance we were a high flood risk area so we couldn't insure straight away, we were trying to find someone, we knew we needed to.
"We were a bit naïve, its cost us the world."
The couple are unsure what they will do next but their main focus is trying to make what's left of the house water-tight.
“I just feel grateful that we are alive, these things can be a lot worse, but in the light of day it has been devastating," she said.
"We're still living in the caravans at the moment."
They have £100,000 in damage costs hanging over their head but Sabrina has set up a GoFundMe to help.
To carry out the most necessary work, the couple will need to raise £20,000 and they've already been donated £6,000.
“I am absolutely humbled and overwhelmed", the 34-year-old added.
"We've had such an outpour of kindness it's been amazing, I write to everyone who donates personally to thank them and I will remember this forever, hopefully one day I can give something back too."
Unfortunately Sabrina and Pete have not been the only couple affected by the devastating impact of house fires.
One couple have been forced to live in a tent for more than two months after their property was destroyed.
The disabled woman and her partner have pitched up in a friend's back garden and have been struggling to find anywhere else suitable.
She said: "I was shocked to come home to the police trying to smash the door in to let the fire brigade in. I was heartbroken. I'd lived in that house for years.
"They found an aerosol can in the garden which was not left by us. I knew it had to be somebody else who did it."
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Another elderly couple saw their house go up in flames after their Christmas tree turned into a "huge ball of fire".
It is believed they had tried to show their grandchildren a traditionally decorated German tree but dramatic images later showed smoke billowing from the destroyed bungalow, in Worthing.
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