FEMA Temporary Housing Program in New Mexico

Release Date:
August 2, 2022

FEMA determines eligibility for its Individual Assistance program, which includes housing assistance. To be considered, residents should only complete one disaster assistance application. Not everyone will be eligible; however, FEMA’s temporary housing options can provide support to residents who qualify.

The Program:

  • On Friday, July 22, FEMA approved the State of New Mexico’s request for Direct Temporary Housing Assistance for eligible residents in Lincoln, Mora and San Miguel counties.
  • The mission is expected to be small in number and will likely entail placing a manufactured home on the resident’s property for the length of time it takes to rebuild.
    • There are many factors that need to be addressed/met before a unit can be placed. The determination entails several steps.
      • Specifically, there will need to be water, sewer, electric hookups, or a way to hook-up to them. Properties need to be properly cleared of all debris. The land must not be in a flood zone - all factors that will determine if FEMA's temporary units will work on affected properties.


Residents with disaster-damaged property may be eligible for FEMA Direct Temporary Housing Assistance if:

  • They are homeowners or renters whose property received major damage based on FEMA’s damage assessment. This is defined as significant structural impact requiring extensive repairs. Because of the damage, the property is not safe, sanitary or functional for anyone to reside.
  • The house has been destroyed, meaning the wildfire damage is so extensive, repairs are not feasible. This is determined by the information included in the disaster assistance application and the outcome of FEMA’s damage assessment.
  • The damaged home must be the owner’s primary residence and located in Lincoln, Mora or San Miguel counties, the three counties designated for FEMA’s Direct Temporary Housing Assistance program.

What Happens Next?

  • Residents with disaster-related damage should apply for FEMA disaster assistance. FEMA will talk to those determined eligible for Direct Temporary Housing Assistance to discuss options and the feasibility of placing a temporary home on their property or occupying a unit in a group or commercial site.
  • The resident's need for temporary housing will be re-evaluated on a regular basis while participating in the program. To remain in the program, all applicants must comply with the temporary housing agreement. This includes demonstrating progress towards a permanent housing plan.

FEMA's Temporary Housing Mission in New Mexico:

  • Each site is a construction project. The amount of time it takes to place a FEMA temporary housing unit depends on the feasibility of the location, accessibility, utilities, and preparation for placement
    • FEMA will assess the condition, location and resources that will be needed to support a temporary home that can be safely lived in while residents rebuild. FEMA must follow all federal, state and local regulations in the placement of a unit.
    • Specifically, there will need to be water, sewer, electric hookups, or a way to hook up to them.
    • Properties need to be properly cleared of all debris.
  • Individuals and households may receive grants for Direct Temporary Housing Assistance in addition to grants intended to cover other eligible expenses to help with recovery.
  • Direct Temporary Housing Assistance is not counted toward the financial housing assistance maximum award.

Residents affected by the wildfires who have not yet applied for assistance from FEMA can still do so. The fastest and easiest way is online. Create an application and upload accompanying documents by visiting disasterassistance.gov. New Mexicans can also call the FEMA Helpline at 800-621-3362. Specialists staff the toll-free number from 7 a.m. to 10 p.m., seven days a week. Residents who use a relay service, such as video relay service (VRS), captioned telephone service or others, give FEMA the number for that service. Multilingual operators are available (press 2 for Spanish).


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