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September 20, 2017
DID YOU RECEIVE HUD RENTAL ASSISTANCE BEFORE HARVEY? YOU MAY BE ELIGIBLE FOR FEMA ASSISTANCE
If you were directly impacted by Hurricane Harvey and live in one of the 39 counties designated for FEMA Individual Assistance and were receiving rental assistance from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) prior to the hurricane, then you may be eligible for FEMA benefits. Register for disaster assistance on line at DisasterAssistance.gov.
FEMA may be able help if you were displaced from your HUD-assisted housing because of Hurricane Harvey. This includes individuals and families who were:
- Living in HUD-assisted public housing.
- Living in a privately-owned apartment that provides rental assistance from HUD.
- Living in a private home using a Section 8 Housing Choice Voucher from a housing authority.
Some of the benefits for eligible tenants are:
- Temporary assistance to pay for a place for you and your family to live.
- Grants to replace essential contents-such as clothing and essential household items-and medical, dental and burial expenses.
Tenants who have HUD rental assistance may receive FEMA help to pay for a place to live until:
- You relocate back to public housing.
- You relocate back to the private housing that provides HUD assistance.
- You sign a lease with a private property owner using a Section 8 voucher.
Federal law prevents FEMA from duplicating benefits provided by another agency. When a HUD-assisted resident's home becomes unlivable, HUD stops paying rental assistance for that residence. The survivor may then apply for FEMA Individual Assistance. There is no duplication of benefits because HUD is not paying rental assistance.
When the survivor moves back into a HUD-assisted residence, or signs a new lease for rental housing under the Section 8 program, HUD assistance resumes. At that point, the survivor may no longer receive FEMA assistance.
The first step to be considered for FEMA help is to apply. There are three ways:
- Log onto DisasterAssistance.gov with any computer, smartphone or tablet.
- Download and use the FEMA mobile app. You can also use the app to check the status of your application.
- If you cannot access the website or FEMA app, call the FEMA helpline at 800-621-3362. If you use TTY, call 800-462-7585. If you use 711 or Video Relay Service (VRS), call 800-621-3362.
The counties designated for FEMA Individual Assistance are Austin, Aransas, Bastrop, Bee, Brazoria, Calhoun, Chambers, Colorado, DeWitt, Fayette, Fort Bend, Galveston, Goliad, Gonzales, Hardin, Harris, Jackson, Jasper, Jefferson, Karnes, Kleberg, Lavaca, Lee, Liberty, Matagorda, Montgomery, Newton, Nueces, Orange, Polk, Refugio, Sabine, San Jacinto, San Patricio, Tyler, Victoria, Walker, Waller and Wharton Counties.
HUD's mission is to create strong, sustainable, inclusive communities and quality affordable homes for all. More information about HUD and its programs is available on the Internet at www.hud.gov and http://espanol.hud.gov.
You can also connect with HUD on social media and follow Secretary Carson on Twitter and Facebook or sign up for news alerts on HUD's Email List.