How to Get FEMA Assistance After a Disaster
If you’ve been affected by a disaster such as Hurricane Irma, you may qualify to receive FEMA financial assistance. The Federal Emergency Management Agency provides direct housing assistance which is available for a period of up to 18 months beginning on the date of a Presidential disaster declaration (9/10/17 for Irma).
You’ll want to register with FEMA immediately once you have become affected by a disaster, even if you aren’t sure you’ll qualify. You can register or apply online, but it seems that most people have an easier time by calling FEMA at 800-621-FEMA. Be sure to make your claim within 60 days or you may not be able to receive relief.
The information you’ll need includes:
- Social Security number
- Mailing address
- Address of damaged property
- Insurance information
- Brief description of damages
- Contact phone number
A mobile disaster recovery center may be set up in your community after a disaster. If that is the case, you can meet with a FEMA rep and register. After registering you may receive an SBA low-interest disaster loan application. This can be a bit confusing but you must complete this application in order to be considered for disaster assistance. You do not have to accept the SBA loan, but you still have to apply.
FEMA is supposed to respond to claims within 10 days and you will then receive assistance within two to three days. Available assistance includes rental assistance, grants to cover repair damages and medical expenses not covered by insurance, and vehicle replacement grants.
If you have any questions during the process, you can contact FEMA at the phone number provided above. It’s important that you complete all the steps in the process in order to receive your emergency assistance. To make sure your home’s windows are protected during the next hurricane call Alufab USA at 239-226-4872.