In general, once a buyout project has been established for a certain area and the funding is in place, we will try to hold a neighborhood meeting or send letters to residents to give an overview of the process.
The first step for each property owner is an initial meeting with our buyout staff. During this meeting, the process will be discussed in detail, and our staff can learn more about each family's particular needs as they relate to the buyout.
We will then arrange for an independent appraisal to determine the property's fair market value. This value will be the basis for our offer. If the property owner accepts the offer, they may also be eligible for additional assistance to help secure replacement housing.
The house must be vacant on the date that we acquire it. After acquisition, we are required to abate any asbestos-containing materials in the house and then demolish it. In most cases, the acquired land will be maintained as open space with minimal mowing to allow the natural and beneficial characteristics of the floodplain to be restored.