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Questions and Answers about Direct Housing in Southwest Louisiana for Hurricane Laura

Photo courtesy of MGN Online

Questions and Answers about Direct Housing in Southwest Louisiana for Hurricane Laura

Posted: Dec 31, 2020 9:05 AM

Q: How does FEMA determine the order of who gets a temporary housing unit?

A: Survivors who complete their FEMA application and provide the necessary documentation reflecting significant damage to their Primary Residence will be placed on a waiting list. Some cases such as survivors living in public shelters, tents or other unsafe housing, are typically considered priority cases for receiving FEMA housing.

Q: I would like a unit placed on my driveway next to my house so that I can rebuild myself. What will happen if I am not finished in 18 months?

A: If FEMA, State Agencies, and Local Officials determine there is a need for continued assistance beyond the initial 18 month period, and you have followed all eligibility requirements up to that point, you may be eligible for a month to month extension. To remain eligible, you must follow all the conditions of the license-in agreement, such as taking care of the unit, regularly meeting with your case worker, and most importantly progress towards a permanent housing plan.

Q: Does temporary housing affect other FEMA assistance?

A: No. If you are a homeowner, you may also be eligible to receive FEMA assistance for home repairs while you stay in a temporary unit. Homeowners and renters may also be eligible for FEMA’s Other Needs Assistance, such as hurricane-related medical and dental expenses, childcare, vehicle damage, moving and storage, funeral expenses and repair or replacement of essential personal property.

Q: Can I entertain overnight company in my housing unit, allow others to live in the unit or rent out a bedroom in my unit?

A: You may have company, but you cannot rent out part of your unit for financial gain. If a family member needs to move in with you, you must contact your caseworker to change the conditions of your contract. If a person living in your unit gives birth, FEMA considers the infant an additional resident.

Q: Can I bring pets with me into the unit?

A: Yes. FEMA allows for up to two pets.

Q: Is there anything I can do to make the process go faster?

A: Yes. Keep in mind the following steps to avoid slowing the process:

Be available. You must be present for a site inspection. FEMA will arrange to place an MHU on your property if the agency determines it is feasible. A FEMA representative will provide information during the inspection process so you can contact them if you have questions about the status of your MHU.

Once you have been approved for a FEMA unit, contact your power company to install a second service and meter on your property. Your parish or city will then inspect the installation and notify the power company that power may be turned on. Tell the power company it is for a FEMA MHU installation.

Help FEMA obtain right-of-entry from your neighbors. FEMA may need permission to trench utility lines or gain access to the site.

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