SAN FRANCISCO (KRON) — Thousands of people lost everything in the North Bay firestorm, and are wondering how to get their life back.

One of the first steps to recovering tangible losses, is getting in touch with your insurance company.

This can be a confusing process; many people don’t even know where to begin.

State Farm agent David Wong is here to guide you.

Wong visited the KRON4 studios, and answered a series of questions that fire victims may have.

Whether your house or car was completely destroyed, or suffered only some smoke and fire damage, start by filing a claim.

Once a claim is filed, an agent will get back to and tell you what your options are.

What about people in shelter, who are still unable to go home?

Wong says you can absolutely get the ball rolling, even if you’re still staying in an evacuation shelter.

He recommends preparing a list of everything you think you lost in the fires.

Agents expect and are prepared to handle a long list of items.

If you lost something of significant value, such as artwork, Wong says it helps if you can somehow document that item.

So, you’ve filed your claim and sent over your list. What next?

Wong says you should get a check to cover living expenses as you start rebuilding.

Save all your receipts, especially from things like hotel stays.

These are expenses that are covered, subject to your deductible.

“We want to make sure people are safe and are able to live,” Wong said.

He says State Farm has even been able to write immediate checks for people in shelters to help cover the cost of living.

The sooner you are able to start the process, the better.

See the full interview in the video above for more.

KRON4’s Financial Expert Rob Black also has advice for fire victims here.WHAT OTHERS ARE CLICKING ON: