An elderly man is safe but his Melbourne home, which was full of hoarded bric-a-brac, has been completely destroyed in a fierce fire.

The hoarded material, which included old newspapers, fuelled the blaze at the Malvern East home which took 45 firefighters an hour to extinguish on Monday afternoon.

Apart from the material inside the house, firefighters also had to contend with a live power line that fell on to a fire truck.

Metropolitan Fire Brigade spokesman Trevor Woodward said the elderly occupant escaped injury but a firefighter suffered a suspected broken ankle and had to be taken to hospital.

"The elderly man was very lucky to get out of the house," Mr Woodward said.

"When we first got the call, smoke was coming from under the eaves and within four minutes after we got there the whole house was ablaze."