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Government shutdown impacting real estate in Acadiana

Posted at 10:17 PM, Jan 23, 2019
and last updated 2019-01-24 00:08:06-05

On day 33 of the partial government shutdown, KATC is learning how it’s affecting people in Acadiana that are not government employees.

The shutdown is hitting home in ways you may not have thought.

New flood maps were released the day before the government shutdown, and now, those looking to buy or sell homes are running into issues. One Youngsville homeowner, Neil Broussard, said he’s at a standstill.

On the new flood maps, 17 of the 19 subdivisions in Youngsville are now in a flood zone. With FEMA being closed due to the shutdown, homeowners cannot get their verifications needed to be removed from Flood Zone A.

“We’re trying to sell our home right now in Youngsville; however, potential home buyers need a flood determination to be able to make an offer, get a loan and so forth, but, because FEMA controls the flood zoning and revisions to the flood maps, we can’t get any approvals done,” Broussard said.

That’s because FEMA employees are furloughed because of the government shutdown.

“So, the assessment that was made to raise this property out of the flood zone has to be revalidated, based upon the new map. But because the new map went into effect the day before the shutdown, none of those validations can be remade until their reopens,” Broussard said.

FEMA’S closure is affecting Broussard and his family because he needs to relocate for work, but he can’t move forward with potential buyers without the services.

“It’s making it a lot harder for us to be able to move for career necessity because now we have another hurdle to be able to move our current property, so that we can move on,” Broussard said.

Youngsville Mayor Ken Ritter said he’s empathetic to everyone’s situation and hopeful circumstances will change soon.

“Unfortunately, there is nothing that we can do in the local government. While it may be minor in the big scheme of things affecting the government shutdown, it is creating some issues here locally for us, and I do empathize with anyone who is looking to buy or sell a home because it is creating uncertainty,” Ritter said.