KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WATE) — Of the few hundred structures damaged by the wildfires in Sevier County, many of those were cabin homes used as vacation rentals. However, more than just the homeowners were affected.
Angie Carmichael is the owner of Above the Rest Cleaning, which she’s been managing for the last five years. She said her business took a hit.
“All in all, it’s devastating for not just the owners, but for the cabin cleaners too because that leaves us without a job,” Carmichael said. “They have insurance to cover it, we do not.”
The aftermath of the recent blazes destroyed one cabin that Carmichael cleans in the Shagbark area, and another owner sold theirs, putting her out of two cabins. This also put a dent in how much money she makes. Carmichael said it affected her usual intake by around $3,000 per month.
“That’s rent to a lot of people. That’s a lot of money,” she said. “We don’t have a ton of cabins, we keep enough to where we can live comfortably.”
Carmichael has worked extra hours to compensate for the cabins lost, and she’s searching for replacements, but it’s not easy to move on.
“It hits more than just our pockets,” she said.
This is because each cabin is like a second home and each owner is like family. Through it all, Carmichael said she knows they’ll be back on their feet soon.
“Every time something knocks us down we get up stronger so it’s okay, you know everyone will bounce back and it will be great,” she said.