In late August, the destructive Hurricane Harvey unleashed itself on the city of Houston. In its wake, thousands of Houstonians were left homeless as a result of flooding in their homes. Approximately 80 percent of the people that had their homes damaged by Harvey didn’t have flood insurance.
There are a variety of reasons why so many of those affected did not have flood insurance. One reason is that lenders and bankers should have ensured that residents in the flood zones were equipped with and maintained their flood insurance, but in reality, many did not do so. Additionally, a large amount of the flooded homes were not situated in the 100-year floodplain and, therefore, were not forced to purchase flood insurance. Lastly, many individuals cannot afford flood insurance. With flood insurance policies costing up to a couple thousand dollars per year, it is just not feasible for everyone. This shows the real contrast between the wealthy and the poor along with the difference in resources available to the two polar ends of the socioeconomic spectrum. Hurricane Harvey truly exposed the issues with the American flood insurance program.
Unfortunately, there are not many resources available to those without flood insurance. One option is a somewhat economical loan through the U.S. Small Business Administration that basically serves as a second mortgage. Also, The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) gives grants on a house to house basis to speed up the process for people to return to their homes, but this does not cover the full repair of the homes.
If you or someone you know lost their home as a result of Hurricane Harvey, contact an experienced attorney at Abraham, Watkins, Nichols, Agosto, Aziz & Stogner by calling 713-396-3964 or toll free at 800-594-4884.