Rice Lake residents working with FEMA to raise up homes

MINOT, N.D. – Some residents of Rice Lake are working with FEMA to save their homes from future flood damage by raising them up.

Nine property owners around the lake are attempting to either raise up their home or move their home to a higher location on their lot.

Bob Hargrave, who plans to raise his home up, said the homeowners need to raise their homes roughly eight feet to get above the current floodplain.

Rising water in 2011 flooded many properties around the lake, forcing landowners to demolish what was left of their homes, but the lake has since bounced back and residents experienced their first summer without major flood recovery efforts.

Hargrave said raising a home up can cost more than $100,000, but if FEMA approves the move, the agency will cover 75 percent of the cost.

“All of us in there are pumping 24-7. We’ve got wet crawlspaces, wet basements. The homes are starting to deteriorate, so with the grant being out there we can get it above the floodplain, above water level, bring the property values back,” said Bob Hargrave, Rice Lake homeowner.

Hargrave said the program should be a go, but homeowners are waiting now on engineers to review cost estimates of the work.

Work wouldn’t likely begin until next year.