Gulf County storm victims to receive new homes at no cost

By  | 

GULF COUNTY, Fla. (WJHG/WECP) - Some storm victims in Gulf County will be getting a new place to live. The Gulf County State Housing Initiatives Partnership Program and the Florida Housing Finance Corporation gave out their first home Monday.

Joe Paul with the Gulf County Initiatives Partnership Program said they will give out seven more homes to storm victims who qualify for the program.

"Now they've got a good home, a good quality built home that's Zone 3 for absolutely nothing," said Paul.

Hurricane Michael damaged many homes in our area and even left some without one. That was the reality for one local disabled veteran until he received a new home Monday. Todd Wedemiemer lived in his home in Gulf County for 13 years, until it was destroyed by the storm.

"It's just crazy. It still is mind boggling, but you know I just wanna do what I can to help out," said Wedemiemer.

The disabled Air Force veteran said he wanted to leave the area after he lost his home, but stayed to help the area recover from the storm.

"It was just crazy working seven days a week just trying to pick up some of the pieces you know, bring some type of structure back to Mexico Beach," said Wedemiemer.

Wedemeimer said he helped by hauling storm debris, clearing roadways and repairing homes, but while he was helping to fix up Mexico Beach he was living out of an 8' by 8' shed.

"The first month or two I thought this was gonna take some time. There's still a lot to be done," said Wedemiemer.

Now Wedemiemer is living in a new 16' by 38' mobile home. Wedemeimer applied to the Gulf County State Housing Initiatives Partnership Program and received the home.

"Through this program offered by the Florida Housing Finance Corporation, this home will not cost him anything," said Paul. "He lives in it for 20 years, he pays no finance charges no payment and the home is his."

"I don't know how to explain it. I'm so elated, just as happy as I can be," said Wedemeimer.