South Carolina Disaster Recovery Office delivers first home to family following 2015 storm

South Carolina Disaster Recovery Office delivers first home to family following 2015 storm

GEORGETOWN, SC (WMBF) - A family whose home was destroyed in the October 2015 flooding will now wake up under a new roof.

Monday, the South Carolina Disaster Recovery Office made a special delivery. They gave the first set of keys to a family still trying to recover and get their lives back on track nearly two years after that devastating flooding.

The home was built thanks to the Disaster Recovery Grant. The state of South Carolina has over 100 million dollars in federal money to spend on getting storm survivors back in adequate housing.

Representatives say when they go out to inspect homes damaged by recent storms, they determine if the home needs repairs or is a total loss and needs to be replaced.

The home built will be asked on the size of the family and will come with appliances. A ramp can be added if the family requests it.

The Disaster Recovery office is still inspecting homes from the 2015 floods, and so far over 400 have been inspected but the agency plans to cover 2100.

Representatives say the bulk of the hardest hit areas are in Charleston, Clarendon, Dorchester, Florence, Georgetown, Horry, Sumter and Williamsburg Counties.

Their targets are the elderly, low income families, families with children under 5 and those who have disabilities.

"We're helping people cannot help themselves, those people who cannot recover themselves, and that's the significant helping people who can't rebuild and cannot repair their homes and put them back in a safe sanitary secure environment," Disaster Recovery Deputy Program Manager Benjamin Duncan said

Louise Bennett is the first recipient of a brand new house from the Distaster Recovery Office. She has been living in dangerous conditions due to the past storm. But Monday, she no longer has to live in an unsafe place.

In this case, the Bennett family needed a traditional home because it was going to cost more to repair their damaged home. It took about four months from the inspection process to the family moving in to their brand new house.

When the family heard about getting awarded a brand new house, they were so thankful they fed the workers while they were building their house.

The house is a little more than 900 square feet with two bedrooms and two baths. It also comes with appliances.

Loretta Carson accepted the keys from the Disaster Recovery Office in place of her mom who will actually be living in the house.

She says her family is excited and glad their mom will be in a safer place. She says it's been a long process, but thankful there are people around to help.

"They have provided everything that I think they needed, a little space maybe but everything else in this house you know is just exciting," Loretta Carson said.

The family does not have to cover any costs out of pocket but is required to live in the home for at least three years.

The South Carolina Disaster Recovery Office is set to deliver its second home in Sumter on Tuesday.

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