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If you are a homeowner in New Jersey faced with climbing out of the wreckage of Hurricane Sandy, you are not alone. If you are among those considering a NJ house raising company so your home will be above future floods, you are also not alone. And if you are finding it difficult to find a way to pay for that house raising in NJ, you are definitely not alone.

Thankfully, this summer the office of Governor Chris Christie announced a plan to launch a $100 million home elevation program in the nine counties hardest hit by Superstorm Sandy. The program is being administered by the Department of Community Affairs (DCA) and Department of Environmental Protection (DEP).

The new program, called the Hazard Mitigation Grant Program (HMGP) Elevation Program, will offer eligible residents reimbursements of up to $30,000 when elevating existing single family homes. The idea is to help homeowners get above future flooding and to meet the requirements of the new FEMA flood maps, which have caused controversy in many Jersey Shore communities.

According to Christie, “Elevation will literally raise these houses out of harm’s way of potential flooding, and is an important step in preventing and mitigating damage from future storms.”

The program is not available statewide. Right now, the program is limited to the Sandy-impacted communities of Atlantic, Bergen, Cape May, Essex, Hudson, Middlesex, Monmouth, Ocean and Union.

A valuable list of links:

Take note, if your home is targeted for buyout under the state’s HMGP acquisition program you are not eligible to take part in the program. Even more important, due to federal regulations, homeowners who have already begun elevation work are restricted from applying.

There are no income requirements for the program and FEMA registration is not required in order to apply.

This program will ensure that homeowners have a chance to get their homes to higher ground, thereby cutting their flood insurance costs. It will also mean that house raising New Jersey companies will remain busy for at least the next year or two, as the funding will allow many New Jersey homeowners to pursue a house lift they previously could not afford.

Homeowners can apply to both this program and the Homeowner Reconstruction, Rehabilitation, Elevation and Mitigation (RREM) Program, but can only receive a grant from one of them. If you have already secured an RREM grant, you will have to decide whether to accept it or reject it.

The HMGP program is intended to guard against future flooding, therefore applications will be prioritized by flooding risk and then by level of Sandy-related damage. A lottery system will be used if applications exceed the amount of funding available.

Homeowners can apply for elevation grant assistance at or by calling 1-855-SANDYHM (1-855-726-3946). They can also apply in person at one of the Housing Recovery Centers open in the nine counties hit hardest by Superstorm Sandy.

Registration for the program closes September 15, 2013.

For more information on the HMGP Elevation Program, including details about the application process, determination of eligibility, and award calculation, visit


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