A George Town couple managed to escape from their three-bedroom home on Clayton Drive off South Church Street after a fire started early Wednesday morning.
A 1997 Blazer and a 1998 Silverado in the carport were destroyed by the fire.
The two-car garage was gutted and the interior of the home received extensive fire, smoke and water damage.
Firefighters received the 911 call at 6:40 a.m. At first, it was reported as a brush fire which had turned into a structure fire.
The cause of the blaze was under investigation, Fire Services Acting Deputy Fire Chief Sherman Yates said.
Fire crews from West Bay and George Town responded, arriving at the scene at 6:47 a.m., according to the Fire Services Department.
“All I remember is my wife waking me up around 6 a.m., saying she heard knocking and I must go check it out,” said 64-year-old homeowner James Merren.
Mr. Merren and his wife Shirley have lived at the home for 32 years.
“I built and designed that home with my own two hands,” said Mr. Merren as he stood on the front lawn sharing his ordeal with family and friends after the fire trucks left.
He said he had stayed up late working around the home and had retired to bed around 3 a.m. When his wife woke him and sent him downstairs, he said, he smelled the smoke.
“When I opened the front door and went outside, I could not see the garage doors for smoke,” he said.
He ran back inside to cut the power on the breaker box and to tell his wife the house was on fire.
“I also remember telling her the cars were on fire,” Mr. Merren said.
All this time, he said, they were still inside the burning home when he told his wife to call 911. “They told us to get out of the house immediately, so we went outside to wait on the fire trucks, which was a good thing,” Mr. Merren said.
According to neighbor Eileen Brown, she was awakened by her helper banging on her room door telling her to get out of the house because the house next door was on fire.
“I was in the bedroom with my mother, who is bedridden, when I heard the helper banging on the door for us to get out of the house,” said Ms. Brown.
Fire officers left the scene after 10 a.m.