BATON ROUGE — Insurance Commissioner Jim Donelon has announced that the Louisiana Fortify Homes Program (LFHP) will open its first round of grants at noon on Oct. 2. Homeowners must have a policy with Louisiana Citizens Property Insurance Corporation to apply for one of 500 grants available in the first round. Grants will be awarded on a first-come, first-served basis.
The program will provide grants of up to $10,000 for homeowners to repair or replace their roofs to the Fortified Roof standard of the Insurance Institute for Business & Home Safety. More information is available at www.ldi.la.gov/fortifyhomes. Those interested in the program are encouraged to review eligibility information and frequently asked questions on the website to determine whether their home meets the requirements for the program.
Homeowners are required to create a profile in the LFHP system before applying for a grant beginning Sept. 13. LFHP staff urge homeowners who are interested in the program to create a profile before the grant application period opens on Oct. 2, as homeowners will need to log in to their profile before applying. LFHP staff expect all available grants to be awarded quickly, so eligible homeowners should attempt to apply as quickly as possible once the application window goes live at noon.
“The best way we can prepare for hurricanes and other severe weather is to use stronger materials and construction methods when building and repairing our homes,” said Donelon. “Grant recipients can also take advantage of our new law requiring insurers to provide a premium discount to policyholders with Fortified roofs.”
The LFHP currently has enough funding to award approximately 3,000 grants. The first half of those grants will be limited to Citizens policyholders. The remaining grants will be available to all eligible homeowners across the state.
“Limiting the approximately 1,500 grants to Louisiana Citizens will provide relief to those policyholders who are paying the highest premiums and will help depopulate Citizens, which is in the best interest of all property insurance policyholders in Louisiana,” said Commissioner Donelon.
The grant will cover the cost of reinforcing a roof using methods that meet or exceed the Fortified Roof standard, which includes strengthening a building against severe storms, high winds and wind driven rain. Homeowners must meet eligibility requirements and pay all costs for the roof upgrade including permits, inspections and construction costs beyond the amount of the grant.