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Fact Sheet: What is FEMA’s Individual Assistance Program?

The Federal Emergency Management Agency’s Individuals and Households Program (IHP) provides financial help or direct services to those who have necessary expenses and serious needs if they are unable to meet these needs through other means. These forms of help are available:

  • Housing Assistance (including Temporary Housing, Repair, Replacement, and Semi-Permanent or Permanent Housing Construction) and

  • Other Needs Assistance (including personal property and other items)

Housing Assistance

Temporary Housing: Money to rent a different place to live or a temporary housing unit (when rental properties are not available).

Repair: Money for homeowners to repair damage from the disaster that is not covered by insurance. The goal is to repair the home to a safe and sanitary living or functioning condition. FEMA may provide some for home repair; then the homeowner may apply for a Small Business Administration disaster loan for additional repair assistance. FEMA will not pay to return a home to its condition before the disaster. Flood insurance may be required if the home is in a Special Flood Hazard Area. Repair and replacement items include:

  • Structural parts of a home (foundation, outside walls, roof)

  • Windows, doors, floors, walls, ceilings, cabinetry

  • Septic or sewage system

  • Well or other water system

  • Heating, ventilating, and air conditioning system

  • Utilities (electrical, plumbing, and gas systems)

  • Entrance and exit ways from the home, including privately owned access roads

Blocking, leveling and anchoring of a mobile home and reconnecting or resetting its sewer, water, electrical and fuel lines and tanks

Replacement: Money to replace a disaster-damaged home, under rare conditions, if this can be done with limited funds.

Other Needs Assistance

  • The Other Needs Assistance provision of the Individuals and Households Program provides grants for uninsured, disaster-related necessary expenses and serious needs. Assistance includes:

  • Medical and dental expenses

  • Funeral and burial costs

  • Repair, cleaning, or replacement of:

  • Clothing

  • Household items (room furnishings, appliances)

  • Specialized tools or protective clothing and equipment required for your job

  • Necessary educational materials (computers, school books, supplies)

  • Clean-up items (wet/dry vacuum, air purifier, and dehumidifier)

  • Fuel (fuel, chain saw, firewood)

  • Repairing or replacing vehicles damaged by the disaster, or providing for public transportation or other transportation costs

  • Moving and storage expenses related to the disaster (including evacuation, storage, or the return of property to a home)

  • Other necessary expenses or serious needs (for example, towing, or setup or connecting essential utilities for a housing unit not provided by FEMA)

The cost of a National Flood Insurance Program group flood insurance policy to meet the flood insurance requirements

Appeal Rights: If you disagree with FEMA's determination of eligibility or the form of assistance provided, you have the right to appeal within 60 days of the date of your notification letter. Send appeal letters to:

Appeals Officer

FEMA - Individuals & Households Program

National Processing Service Center

P.O. Box 10055, Hyattsville, MD 20782-7055

Telephone: 1-800-621-FEMA or TTY 1-800-462-7585

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. 

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Last Updated: 
07/08/2017 - 10:22