WARWICK, R.I. - Help from the Federal Emergency Management Agency is not limited only to homeowners. Renters, too, may qualify.
"Hurricane Sandy did not discriminate between homeowners and renters and neither do we," said Federal Coordinating Officer James N. Russo, who leads FEMA's mission in Rhode Island. "We want to ensure that all survivors get the assistance they are eligible to receive."
FEMA offers two kinds of help to renters:
- Temporary Housing (a place to live for a limited period of time): If your rental unit was made uninhabitable by the disaster, a FEMA grant can help pay for renting a place to live until you find new permanent housing. FEMA offers free assistance to find a replacement rental property.
- Other Needs: Money is available for necessary expenses and serious needs caused by the disaster that are not covered by insurance or other programs. Items such as textbooks and computers used for education, professional tools, household furnishings, appliances, disaster-related medical or dental costs and storm damage to vehicles may qualify.
To determine whether you are eligible for assistance, you must register with FEMA no later than January 14, 2013. To register, go online to www.DisasterAssistance.gov or to m.fema.gov if using a smartphone or call 800-621-FEMA (3362), 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Those who are deaf, hard of hearing or who have a speech disability may use TTY 800-462-7585.
To register you will need:
- Current and pre-disaster address
- Current phone number
- Social Security number
- Insurance information, if insured
- Total household income
- Description of losses caused by Hurricane Sandy
- Bank account and routing number (for direct deposit of assistance funds)
FEMA's mission is to support our citizens and first responders to ensure that as a nation we work together to build, sustain, and improve our capability to prepare for, protect against, respond to, recover from, and mitigate all hazards.
Disaster recovery assistance is available without regard to race, color, religion, nationality, sex, age, disability, English proficiency or economic status. If you or someone you know has been discriminated against, call FEMA toll-free at 800-621-FEMA (3362). For TTY call 800-462-7585.
FEMA's temporary housing assistance and grants for medical and dental expenses, funeral and burial expenses do not require individuals to apply for an SBA loan. However, applicants who receive SBA loan applications must submit them to SBA loan officers to be eligible for assistance that covers personal property, vehicle repair or replacement, and moving and storage expenses.
SBA disaster loan information and application forms may be obtained by calling the SBA's Customer Service Center at 800-659-2955 (800-877-8339 for people with speech or hearing disabilities) Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. ET or by sending an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org. Applications can also be downloaded from www.sba.gov or completed on-line at https://disasterloan.sba.gov/ela/.