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Displaced Flood Victims Thankful For Another FEMA Housing Aid Extension

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EVANS, Colo. (CBS4) – For the third time, FEMA has extended temporary housing assistance for Colorado flood victims who haven’t been able to find more permanent housing.

The Horns outside their America’s Best Value Inn in Evans (credit: CBS)

The Horns outside their America’s Best Value Inn in Evans (credit: CBS)

The additional two weeks will allow families to stay in participating hotels. The extension doesn’t apply to everyone, though, which means some will have to check out of the hotels they have been staying in on Saturday.

Weld County families who don’t qualify for the extension have been desperately searching for homes to rent, or in some cases buy, but the area has little left, making the search difficult.

David Horn (credit: CBS)

David Horn (credit: CBS)

Every day Evans father David Horn and his wife have been doing their best to find a new place for themselves and their three girls, but so are hundreds of other families in the Weld County area.

“There’s so many people looking for places there are hardly any at all … and then there’s like 20 people applying for one thing. They’re going fast,” he said.

The Horn family has staying in America’s Best Value Inn in Evans since the historic flooding. Their old home is just a few miles away, but floodwaters have made it unlivable.

“It’s been a lot of time living in one little room,” said Horn. “You’re stressed about where you’re going to move to and all that other stuff.”

Weld County officials say the vacancy rate in Evans is less than 2 percent. They say they are working to bring more affordable housing to the area.

The Horns have said that once the FEMA money runs out they might have to move or possibly buying a camper to live out of so their girls can won’t have to change schools.

Clayton Homes, which builds modular homes, has increased their production as one possible solution.

“The housing market up and down the Front Range is fairly tight right now and so this loss of housing — this loss of affordable housing in a lot of cases — what’s available to replace that? Not very much,” Clayton manager Mike Jansen said.

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