A Thunder Bay family lost most of their possessions in an overnight fire.

The home on Dawson Road belonged to Stephen Brown, who's lived there with his family for the past 15 years.

Brown told CBC News his wife discovered the fire.

Stephen Brown

Stephen Brown has lived in the home on Dawson Road with his family for the past 15 years. (Adam Burns/CBC)

"[It] just happened so fast. She just smelled something, and opened the door to the basement and ... everything just started engulfing in flames," he said, adding that his wife "just took off."

Brown and his 12-year-old son were coming home from a hockey game when they were stopped at the end of their driveway.

"There were several fire trucks and police all over, and they wouldn't let me down the driveway," he said. "They just said, 'everybody's OK, and everybody's out.' That's all they would tell me."

Brown's wife, as well as all of the family's pets — two cats and a dog — escaped unharmed.

A Thunder Bay fire inspector at the scene said the fire is not considered suspicious, and that an investigator with the Ontario Fire Marshal's office is expected to arrive sometime tomorrow.

In the meantime, Brown said the situation seems "a little bit unreal."

Paul Bureau

Thunder Bay fire inspector Paul Bureau said the fire is under investigation, but is not considered suspicious. (Adam Burns/CBC)

"It's pretty hard to think right now ... Everything just happened so quick. You never expect it."

Brown, an employee with Resolute, built the home 15 years ago with the help of several sub-contractors. 

Fire inspector Paul Bureau said the blaze likely started in the basement of the home, where there were “numerous fuel-burning appliances: fireplace, pellet stove and an oil boiler — two in the basement, one in the main floor.”

“Everything [was] running,” Bureau said.