If you’ve recently gone through a natural disaster, you may feel overwhelmed and uncertain about the future. One of the first things you need to do is figure out how you’re going to finance the repairs.
Florida has suffered through some major hurricanes over the last few years, so there are programs in place to help homeowners with the cost of rebuilding. FEMA offers grants and low-interest loans to those who qualify, and many insurance companies also offer disaster relief programs.
Consider getting a second mortgage from a trusted Florida mortgage brokerage firm. It may be a good idea to free up some cash. Here are a few other options to consider.
1. FEMA Assistance
If your home has been damaged or destroyed by a natural disaster that the president has declared, you may be eligible for assistance from the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). FEMA provides grants for temporary housing and home repairs, as well as other needs such as medical and dental expenses, funeral and burial costs, and personal property losses. You can apply for FEMA assistance online at www.disasterassistance.gov or by calling 1-800-621-FEMA (3362).
2. SBA Loans
The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) offers low-interest disaster loans to homeowners, renters, businesses of all sizes, and private non-profit organizations. SBA disaster loans can be used to repair or replace your home, business, or personal property damaged or destroyed in a declared disaster. You can apply for an SBA disaster loan online at www.sba.gov/disaster or by calling 1-800-659-2955.
3. Insurance Claims
If you have insurance, contact your insurance company as soon as possible after the disaster to file a claim. Most homeowner’s insurance policies cover damage from hurricanes, tornadoes, fires, and hail storms, but flood damage is usually not covered unless you have purchased a separate flood insurance policy. Your insurance company will send an adjuster to assess the damage to your home and determine how much they will pay for repairs.
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4. Personal Loans
If you don’t have insurance or need additional financing beyond what your insurance covers, you may want to consider taking out a personal loan from a bank or credit union. Personal loans typically have lower interest rates than credit cards, so they can be a good option for financing home repairs. Be sure to shop around for the best interest rate and terms before taking out a loan.
Crowdfunding platforms such as GoFundMe allow individuals to raise money for personal causes such as natural disasters. If you decide to start a crowdfunding campaign, be sure to set a realistic goal and provide updates on how the funds are being used to donors. You may also want to consider setting up a fundraiser on Facebook where friends and family can easily donate money with just a few clicks.
6. Home Equity Loans
If you have equity in your home, you may be able to take out a home equity loan or home equity line of credit (HELOC) to finance the repairs. Home equity loans and HELOCs typically have lower interest rates than personal loans and credit cards, making them a good option for financing home repairs.
7. Government Grants
The government offers a variety of grant programs that can be used for home repairs after a natural disaster. The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) offers grants for homeowners and renters who need assistance with repairs and rebuilding after a disaster. To find out if you’re eligible for a HUD grant, contact your local HUD office or visit www.hud.gov/disasterassistance. The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) also offers grants and loans for homeowners and businesses in rural areas who need assistance with repairs and rebuilding after a disaster. To find out if you’re eligible for a USDA grant or loan, contact your local USDA office or visit www.usda.gov/disasterassistance.
8. Tax Deductions
If you’ve incurred expenses related to repairing or rebuilding your home after a natural disaster, you may be able to deduct the costs on your income tax return. Be sure to keep receipts for all repairs and renovations as documentation of the expenses. For more information on tax deductions for home repairs, visit www.irs.gov/taxtopics/tc515.html.
When a natural disaster strikes, it can be a difficult and stressful time. But with a little planning and preparation, you can minimize the damage to your home and property and
Many financing options are available to help you after a natural disaster – it just takes some research to find the one that’s right for your situation! Be sure to explore all of your options before making any decisions so that you can get back on your feet as soon as possible following a devastating event.”