AUSTIN, Texas — As hurricane season approaches, many Texans continue to rebuild from Hurricane Harvey and other recent natural disasters, while others are retrofitting their homes to be better prepared for weather events in the future.
Whether you’re building new, rebuilding or improving an existing home, there are resources available that will help guide you through the process of protecting your home from extreme weather, and might even provide financial assistance:
- Homeowner Assistance Program: HAP, run by the Texas General Land Office (GLO), manages more than $1 billion received from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). The funds help qualified owners repair, rehabilitate or rebuild single-family homes damaged by Harvey. Learn more at http://recovery.texas.gov/hap/index.html.
- FEMA Homeowner's Guide to Retrofitting: FEMA experts explain methods to protect your home from flooding — such as elevating, relocating and floodproofing — and provide guidance to help you make good decisions in this handy guide: https://go.usa.gov/xEsA3.
- Texas Homeowner’s Handbook to Prepare for Coastal Natural Hazards: This publication describes ways to build or retrofit a home to make it more resistant to wind and rain, including sections on roof stability, keeping water out and power issues: http://texasseagrant.org/assets/uploads/resources/HomeownersHandbook_2018_LR.pdf. It is produced by the Texas Sea Grant Program at Texas A&M University through a partnership with the nonprofit Gulf of Mexico Alliance.
- HUD-approved housing counseling agencies: These organizations provide a variety of services, including home improvement and rehabilitation counseling as well as financial management and budget counseling. Search by location at https://go.usa.gov/xEsHM.
- Red Cross Guide for Preparedness and Recovery: This resource includes details on types of mitigation projects, how to pay for them and how to choose the right contractor: www.redcross.org/content/dam/redcross/get-help/pdfs/disasters-and-financial-planning-guide.PDF.
- Your local floodplain administrator: Get informed about your area’s flood risk and recommended methods for mitigation. Also visit www.fema.gov/nfip to learn about insuring your home against floods, the nation’s most common and costly natural disaster.
- Ready.gov: This Department of Homeland Security website and its Spanish version, www.listo.gov, will help you prepare for any type of potential disaster.
For additional information on Hurricane Harvey and Texas recovery, visit the Hurricane Harvey disaster web page at www.fema.gov/disaster/4332, Facebook at www.facebook.com/FEMAHarvey, the FEMA Region 6 Twitter account at www.twitter.com/FEMARegion6 or the Texas Division of Emergency Management website at www.dps.texas.gov/dem.