Insurance deductible funds may not be enough to meet demand in Southwest Florida

Lee County, Florida — Lee County is now accepting applications for the state-funded insurance deduction program. In October, Governor Ron DeSantis awarded his $5 million to his six counties. However, it may not be enough to meet demand.

said Trey Price, executive director of Florida Housing Finance Corporation.

Funds will be divided among six counties: Lee, Charlotte, Collier, Hardy, DeSoto and Sarasota.

Fox 4

For someone like Vicky Gillis, it’s money that can be spent rebuilding.

“I knew it was going to be bad.” “This is the house my husband and I wanted.” That was it.

Gillis is a self-employed Cape Coral homeowner who had a damaged roof and water in her house.

“The homeowner’s insurance adjuster came out last week and I almost filed in the week of the storm,” she explained.

Her homeowners insurance deductible is $14,000 and her flood insurance is $13,000. She said it’s not surprising.

“We were trying to make it affordable because of the age of the house and the height of the house,” she said.

That doesn’t mean people like Gillis don’t need help. There are some requirements, such as income criteria.

“For a family of four [in Lee County]those numbers are under $96,480 a year,” Price said.

The program helps people in six different counties, but not everyone got the $5 million. Price said he made the allocation based on damage data from FEMA and the Florida Emergency Management Agency.

“No damage, low damage, moderate damage, percentage of destroyed homes,” he said.

The problem is that need outweighs available cash. I asked if more money would come from the Florida surplus.

“I think it’s possible. We’ll have to discuss it with Congress. We’ll have to see what the data shows,” Price explained. “We want to see how many applications we can’t fund because of the amount. We can bring that to Congress and let Congress know that there is a great unfunded need if it really exists…”

Charlotte County had to stop accepting applications three days after it opened. They said it was because demand exceeded what they expected to get from the $5 million pot.

When asked what other resources are available, Price cited church groups, charities and other community organizations.

“We could use a little help and a little extra money to cover the deductible so we could put this house back together,” Gillis said.

Gillis will apply if he is qualified. If she applies and she doesn’t get the prize or doesn’t qualify, her next step is to keep moving forward.

“I guess I’ll have to figure it out myself,” she said. “Just put it back in place.”

If you live in Lee County, you can: apply here. However, if you live in Cape Coral City, you’ll have to wait until the week of November 14th. A spokesperson said they can be notified by emailing housing@capecoral.gov. You will need to fill in your name, address, phone number, email address, insurance company and deductible.

Charlotte County says it will likely back the application if it gets more funding.

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