Neighbors said it all started with an explosion.
"I heard an explosion," neighbor Adrian Klingel said. "It sounded like a gunshot and we hear a lot of that anyway because there's a police shooting range right over here. But right after that I heard yelling so I ran out here with my cell phone and I saw smoke and my neighbor over here already saw the owner."
Neighbors said the homeowner, his girlfriend and two pets were home when their house caught fire.
They said the homeowner and a dog were singed, but otherwise safe. A cat may have died in the flames, but officials were unable to confirm it.
"When we arrived on scene, we had heavy fire in the rear of the structure and it had already extended up into the second floor," Wake Forest Fire Dept Deputy Chief David Davis said. "Heavy, heavy damage inside -possible total loss."
The Wake County fire marshal is currently investigating. They said they do not know yet what caused the blaze.
Officials said the fire did not spread to any of the surrounding homes.
Klingel said it is a tight knot group of neighbors and the fire has served as a wakeup call.
"I've thought about, should I go take pictures of all my stuff now and it could happen to anybody," he said. "I'd hate to lose all my stuff, but having everybody in one piece to me that's the most important thing."