Tuesday, September 16, 2014

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Cortland/Ithaca

City, private real estate industry offer housing for those displaced by Sandy

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CNY/NNY/S. Tier: City, private real estate industry offer housing for those displaced by Sandy
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With winter closing in, housing continues to be a major worry for those displaced by Sandy, which prompted city officials to reserve some open apartments for those in need of shelter. YNN's Josh Robin has the details.


The city is reserving certain units it helped develop for lower-income and disabled New Yorkers for those displaced by Sandy. It's also partnering with the private sector for market rate apartments.

"There's a lot of folks that are going to be able to benefit from this," said Housing Preservation and Development Commissioner Mathew Wambua. "There's folks that are still, for instance in hotels, who might need longer term solutions. There are folks who are in temporary facilities who may need longer term solutions."

Like one man in Sea Gate who has to stay with friends since his home was destroyed. He said he may look into the program while his home is being restored.

"A lot of repairs have to be repaired," the man said. "The basement in this particular house had water up to the ceiling -- eight feet of water -- and all the walls were taken out, all the sheetrock and it needs a new boiler, it needs a new hot water tank and it needs a whole electrical system."

About 2,500 homes are reserved for those with limited incomes or the disabled.

There are also 700 market rate homes. You may be able to offset the rent with FEMA aid.

"We are doing our best to try and address all the need that is out there," Wambua said. "We don't know that that is going to meet all the need that is out there, but we will continue to works towards ensuring that if you are displaced, that we can be an asset towards helping you find a place."

Leases from the program are expected to be one year long.

But landlords are also being told to be flexible and to allow people to move out once their homes are ready."

Officials say those who sign up should talk with your would-be landlord.

The ultimate goal is to get people back to their homes, which the government is doing by paying for repairs.

Finding a home under this new program won't be very fast. If you're cold now, get help to find immediate shelter.

For more information, residents with a FEMA number can go to nyc.gov, where they can register with the city on the portal, which will enable them to be informed of any additional housing options that may become available. Residents can also call 311.

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