Michigan opens emergency funds for low-income households in need of repairs

For the Metro Detroit households still wading through the damage inflicted on properties from the weekend flooding, the state has opened an emergency relief program for home repairs. 

The Michigan Department of Health and Human Services has opened a State Emergency Relief program for families that suffered storm damage from flooding after an unexpectedly strong amount of rain fell Friday and Saturday.

Families eligible for the assistance will need help with home repairs necessary to fix unsafe conditions and restore essential services.

To be eligible, applicants must be the owner or purchaser of a home. They must also meet income limits to qualify. 

The funds became eligible after the governor declared a state of emergency for Southeast Michigan. On Monday, she said the flooding on highways that have blocked access in and out of Detroit on I-94 was the result of disinvestment in infrastructure and climate change.

But residents of Detroit and Dearborn that found waterlogged basements over the weekend say these issues have persisted for years.

For those that qualify for assistance, the funds will help repair or replace both energy and non-energy-related needs. 

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For families that need a furnace, hot water heater, or septic system repaired, the maximum lifetime limit for funds is $4,000. Families that need non-energy repairs can access up to $1,500 in funds. 


  • Applicant must be the owner or purchaser of the home, or hold a life estate or life lease on the home with the responsibility for home repairs.
  • The home is the applicant's permanent, usual residence.
  • The home is not listed for sale.
  • The home is not in jeopardy of loss. Repairs will be denied if there is a house payment or property tax arrearage, unless a workable plan exists for paying the arrearage.
  • The ongoing cost of maintaining the home is affordable to the applicant (total housing costs cannot exceed 75 percent of the group's net income).