One of the best pieces of advice to come out of the latest CFED I'm Home Conference was news that the Federal Emergency Management Administration (FEMA) will supply its homes to nonprofits virtually without cost.
FEMA has a lot of homes in staging areas in three cities in the Southeast. They are considering another in New Jersey. One reports says that in all, FEMA has more than 16,000 units.
These are not travel trailers, but instead high-quality manufactured homes designed to meet all kinds of bad weather conditions. These homes must be able to withstand high winds on the Outer Banks, snow loads in the upper Plains, and cooling demands for the desert.
The backlog of homes has created an opportunity for nonprofits. FEMA wants to get rid of the homes. If a non-profit works through the requisite paperwork, they can get homes for only the cost of shipping. For nonprofits in the Southeast, that could work out to as little as a few thousand dollars per home.
One housing director from Minnesota indicated that his group paid a little over $5,000 per unit. Either way, it is still an excellent price for a new home.