Almost 1.2 Million Homes Damaged in 2005 Hurricanes
Almost 1.2 million homes in the Gulf Coast region were damaged last year by Hurricanes Katrina, Rita and Wilma, according to estimates released earlier this year by the Office of the Federal Coordinator for Gulf Coast Rebuilding at the Department of Homeland Security.
FEMA was still using special search recovery dogs as late as March to search for human remains in homes scheduled to be demolished in New Orleans’ 9th Ward. FEMA photo: Marvin Nauman
In cooperation with the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), the Small Business Administration and the Department of Housing and Urban Development, the government report summarizes damage to residences in 136 counties across five states.
The estimates were largely derived from FEMA inspections of housing units to determine their eligibility for insurance from the agency.
For homes that are less than 50% damaged, FEMA will provide up to $5,200 to pay for repairs not covered by insurance. That amount rises to $10,500 for damage exceeding 50%.
Of the total 836,647 owner-occupied housing units sustaining damage from the 2005 hurricanes, roughly 186,000 had both hazard and flood insurance, 399,000 had hazard insurance only and 252,000 were uninsured. About 7,000 of the owner occupied homes were severely damaged or destroyed, with $30,000 or more in damages; and more than 53,000 suffered major damage in the range of $5,200 up to $30,000.
More than 360,000 units of renter-occupied housing were damaged, about 241,800 of them single-family structures. Roughly 2,300 of the single-family rental homes were severely damaged or destroyed.
The summary of damage by state included the following information:
- Alabama. Almost 57,400 homes were damaged, but the vast majority — 51,593 — suffered minor damage of less than $5,200. Damaged homes were equal to about 3% of the state’s 1.737 million housing stock in the 2000 Census.
- Florida. Roughly 6.34 million homes were damaged, with 1,370 sustaining severe damage or being destroyed and 17,770 suffering major damage. Damaged homes were equal to 4% of the 2000 housing stock.
- Louisiana. Almost 1.66 million homes were damaged, or 31% of the state’s housing stock in 2000. There were 19,885 homes that were severely damaged or destroyed and 31,771 with major damage.
- Mississippi. About 1.05 million homes were damaged, or 21% of the housing stock. Damage was severe in 3,537 homes and major in 16,739.
- Texas. Almost 140,000 homes, or 2% of the housing stock, were damaged, but the damage was minor for 127,000 of them.
The median amount of damage sustained by severely damaged or destroyed homes in Mississippi was an estimated $153,180, followed by $118,303 in Alabama, $115,035 in Louisiana, $60,862 in Texas and $51,157 in Florida.
Counties with the highest percentage of occupied units suffering major or severe damage included: Hancock, Miss., 69.8%; Sabine Parish, La., 78.4%; Cameron Parish, La., 71.8%; Plaquemines Parish, La., 57.5%; and Orleans Parish, La., 55.9%.
For information on NAHB’s disaster relief resources, e-mail Ken Ford at NAHB, or call him at 800-368-5242 x8228.