The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) provides financial and direct assistance for disaster-caused housing and personal property needs not covered by insurance or provided by any other source. Low-interest disaster loans are also available to help small businesses recover from declared disasters.
Affected individuals and businesses can apply for assistance through:
- FEMA’s mobile application (available for Apple, Android, and Blackberry mobile devices),
- online at DisasterAssistance.gov, or
- FEMA Helpline at 1-800-621- 3362, multilingual operators are available; TTY 1-800-462-7585; or Visual Relay Service 711.
Residents who still need in-person assistance may visit FEMA's website to locate another Disaster Recovery Center.
Have this information ready when you apply:
- Social Security number (one per household)
- Address of the damaged home or apartment
- Description of the damage
- Information about insurance coverage
- Telephone number
- Mailing address
- Bank account & routing numbers for direct deposit of funds
Special FEMA programs:
- Individuals and Households Program - this program provides financial and direct services to eligible individuals and households affected by a disasters who have uninsured or underinsured necessary expenses and serious needs. Register at one of the FEMA links above or visit the Disaster Recovery Center.
- Reimbursements for generators and chainsaws
- National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) - before you begin to rebuild your home, there may be an NFIP term you need to be aware of: "substantial damage." It's a specific term that applies to a damaged structure in a Special Flood Hazard Area - or floodplain - for which the total cost of repairs is 50 percent or more of the structure's market value before the disaster occurred. It's important to know the percentage of structural damage to help you decide whether to repair or replace a damaged dwelling, and whether additional work will be needed to comply with local codes and ordinances.
Other Assistance Programs and Resources:
- Disaster Unemployment Assistance (DUA) - Reemployment Assistance (RA) benefits and reemployment services to individuals who have become unemployed as a result of a major disaster and who are not eligible for regular state Reemployment Assistance benefits
- Food for Florida – Emergency food benefits for residents impacted by Hurricane Irma who are not currently receiving food benefits through regular Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP)
- Feeding Tampa Bay – Food pantries and distribution sites
- Pet Resources Safety Net Food Pantry - Pet food and pet care items for Hillsborough County residents who need help feeding their dogs and cats
- Disaster Contractor Fraud Hotline - Citizen hotline that can help Hillsborough County residents detect and report fraudulent contractors