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FEMA Offers Assistance for Renters, Too

Release date: 
June 23, 2016
Release Number: 
NR008

AUSTIN, Texas – Renters displaced by the May storms and flooding may be eligible for federal disaster assistance, including grants from FEMA and low-interest disaster loans from the U.S. Small Business Administration.

FEMA offers eligible renters grants for rental assistance. These grants help pay for temporary housing while a damaged home or apartment is being repaired.

Eligible renters may receive grant under FEMA’s Other Needs Assistance program. These grants help uninsured or underinsured survivors with expenses and serious needs caused by the May storms including:

  • child care

  • moving and storage expenses

  • disaster-related funeral and burial expenses

  • disaster-related dental and medical expenses, such as wheelchairs, canes and prescription drugs

  • repair or replacement of storm-damaged personal property, including furniture and appliances, as well as job-related tools and equipment required by the self-employed

  • primary vehicles, and approved second or modified vehicles damaged by the disaster

The SBA offers low-interest disaster loans with rates that remain the same for the life of the loan. Renters may be eligible to borrow up to $40,000 to repair or replace damaged personal property, including automobiles.

Applicants may apply online for an SBA loan using the electronic loan application at the secure website DisasterLoan.sba.gov/ela.

Texans can register for disaster assistance the following ways:

  • online at DisasterAssistance.gov

  • phone 800-621-3362 (FEMA). Persons who are deaf, hard of hearing or have a speech disability and use a TTY may call 800-462-7585. Applicants who use 711 or Video Relay Service may also call 800-621-3362. The toll-free numbers are open from 7 a.m. to 10 p.m., seven days a week. Multilingual operators are available.

  • at a disaster recovery center.To find the nearest one, go online to the Disaster Recovery Center Locator at asd.fema.gov/inter/locator.

FEMA grants do not have to be repaid. FEMA assistance is nontaxable and will not affect eligibility for Social Security, Medicaid or other federal benefits.

Survivors should register even if they have insurance. FEMA cannot duplicate insurance payments, but underinsured applicants may receive help after their claims have been settled.

For more information on the Texas recovery, visit the disaster webpage for the May storms at fema.gov/disaster/4272; or visit the Texas Division of Emergency Management website at txdps.state.tx.us/dem. Follow us on Twitter @femaregion6.

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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.

Download fema.gov/mobile-app to locate open shelters and disaster recovery centers, receive severe weather alerts, safety tips and much more.

Last Updated: 
January 3, 2018 - 12:03