Hurricane Harvey: Picking up the pieces

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Hurricane Harvey has devastated much of Southeastern Texas. Once the rain and floodwaters recede, it’ll be time to take stock and develop a recovery plan. The process may seem overwhelming. Here are a few tips and links to resources to help make the task less burdensome.                                                                                                     

  • Contact your insurance company. Ask what the next steps are in assessing any damage to your home or business.
  • Your home and its contents may look beyond hope, but it’s possible many of your belongings can be restored. With luck and hard work, your flooded home could be cleaned up, dried out, rebuilt, and reoccupied.
  • Be skeptical of people promising immediate clean-up and debris removal. Some may demand payment up-front for work they never do, quote outrageous prices, or simply lack the skills, licenses, and insurance to legally do the work.
  • If you’re looking for a place to rent during recovery, be cautious of rental listing scams. Scammers often advertise rentals that don’t exist to trick people into sending money before they find out the truth.
  • Many people will be asking for your personal information. Make sure you know who you are dealing with. Ask for identification before you share your Social Security or account numbers. Scammers sometimes pose as government officials, and ask for your financial information or money to apply for aid that you can request on your own for free. Government officials will never ask you for money in exchange for information or the promise of a check.
  • You might have had to leave your home without IDs, checks, credit and debit cards, and other documents. You also might be without access to a bank account or paycheck for some time. If you need to get money, understand your options for paying bills and replacing important documents. This list of contacts may help you regain your financial footing.
  • Call your creditors and ask for help. If you’re a homeowner, even if your home is uninhabitable, you still have a mortgage. Contact your lender to discuss your options.

For more tips, please visit Dealing with Weather Emergencies.

Blog Topics: 
Homes & Mortgages

Comments

FEMA has heard reports from our partners of robocalls stating that flood insurance premiums are due and asking for payments. This is fraud.

How can I officially report this to the FTC?
-The National Flood Insurance Program
FEMA

Thanks for your comment. The FTC issued a post about this on August 30. Please see Hurricane Harvey scams: Callers lie about flood insurance.  People can file a report with the FTC online.

What do I do to help me pay my rent?

Credit card companies, lenders, financial institutions, landlords, utilities and others may offer help to people affected by disasters. Contact them, and ask for help. They may be willing to: defer your payments or offer extended repayment plans; extend grace periods; waive late fees; raise your credit limit; refrain from reporting delinquency; and postpone collection, repossessions and foreclosures. For more information, please see Dealing with a Weather Emergency: Getting Back on Your Feet Financially.

Can I please get help..

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