Jim Crozier has every reason to be angry, but he says he hopes the teenage girl who allegedly lit a bushfire on a 42C Melbourne day that extensively damaged his house just gets help.
It took more than 300 firefighters to contain the blaze in Carrum Downs, which badly damaged Mr Crozier's home on Darnley Drive and put the entire street at risk on Saturday.
A 15-year-old Carrum Downs girl has been charged with intentionally starting a bushfire.
"People just don't become an aronist or don't go out to willingly hurt or kill or maim or take my house from me," Mr Crozier told reporters on Sunday.
"There has to be something going on and I hope she gets the help."
Mr Crozier's house was extensively damaged when a burning ember got sucked into his air conditioning.
"All I saw was all my memories going up in smoke," he said.
Assistant Commissioner Deb Abbott says investigators were able to identify the suspected firebug with the help of concerned members of the public.
"Fortunately, and in most cases of fire arson, it is the community that provides us the breaks in these types of cases," she told reporters.
"The community has an extraordinarily low tolerance for this behaviour."
The girl has been bailed to appear before a children's court at a later date.
Police say the fire began at Blue Wren Rise just before 3pm on Saturday, a day authorities had declared a total fire ban as temperatures across the state soared above 40C.
The fire soon spread to surrounding dense scrubland and prompted the evacuation of 30 homes on Darnley Drive and Augusta Court.
Mr Crozier's home was badly damaged, and while no one was injured, the family cannot return home.
The blaze also damaged sheds, fences and a motorhome.
Fire crews on Sunday remained in the area to continue patrols and black out areas after spending the night extinguishing hot spots.
Authorities have advised residents to expect some smoke.