THE flame from one tea light candle destroyed a Miranda home in five minutes last week.

Lisa Mulligan said the fire had left her family homeless and with nothing but the clothes they were wearing when they escaped.

Her advice  “to everyone is don’t use candles,”.

Her daughter 14 year old Sami Brown, left a candle burning in her room for two minutes when she went down the hall last Wednesday afternoon to check on her grandmother.

By the time she came back her room was filled with smoke, which was starting to drift into the rest of the house.

Her mother, Lisa Mulligan, was in the bath but jumped out when she smelled smoke and heard a smoke alarm.

She threw on leggings and ran to the back of the house to save her cat and three guinea pigs.

Sami assisted her grandmother, Eunice Mulligan, who has mobility problems, from her room using a walker and finally made it to the front lawn with the help of a neighbour.

From there they all watched from the front lawn as the house just went up,

The family have lost everything they owned, including wedding photos, family albums, heirlooms and clothes.

Firefighters were on the scene within five minutes.

The family is staying at their next door neighbours’ house until their insurance company finds somewhere for them to live temporarily.

Ms Mulligan, who didn’t have time to put on underwear, said her family would not have got through the past week without Eastcoast City Church, in Caringbah, which donated shoes, clothes, blankets and toiletries.