NJ homeowner's rebuilding on hold - FOX 26 News | MyFoxHouston

Superstorm Sandy

NJ homeowner's rebuilding on hold

Posted: Updated:
NEW JERSEY (MYFOXNY.COM) -

Eric Katz's New Jersey home remains heavily damaged more than five months after Hurricane Sandy hit. His story of damage isn't unique, but what it will take to fix this place up is.

Katz always knew he wanted live on the water.

"When I was young I visited a friend of mine down on the water to spend weekends for the summer," Katz said. "I just knew I had to do that one day and that's how I ended up here."

In 2009, he purchased a ranch-style home in Toms River.

But only two weeks after he finished renovations, Superstorm Sandy left 18 inches of water in his home, something Katz never expected.

"When I left I even put a vacuum in the slop sink thinking it was a joke, like in case water does come, I'll have a vacuum," he said.

And while rebuilding has been difficult for most sandy victims, Katz has an added challenge.

"I stopped walking when I was 15, it didn't really affect me that much," he said. "But now, everything that I've worked for I've put into this house, and it's gone.

Katz painstakingly built his home to be wheelchair accessible.

"I also have a ramp in the backyard, so I could access the backyard," he said. "And there was a ramp also right on the side by the kitchen.

But since Sandy hit, Katz's home has been rezoned. He will have to raise his house 3 feet if he wants affordable flood insurance.

"If I have to raise the house to where they want me to raise it, I would not be able to fit the ramps, let alone the length of them would be extremely long," he said.

Katz has started rebuilding thanks to a $30,000 grant from FEMA and donations via the website gofundme.com. But he has temporarily halted construction until the town maps are finalized in August.

"It makes no sense to put money into this house as a v-zone because it would be cheaper to either walk away, or just knock down the house and start from scratch," he said.

  • New Jersey NewsNew Jersey NewsMore>>

  • Electricity goes out at Six Flags, guests left stranded

    Electricity goes out at Six Flags, guests left stranded

    Sunday, September 14 2014 6:50 PM EDT2014-09-14 22:50:36 GMT
    Six Flags Great Adventure 45th anniversary logo. (AP photo)Six Flags Great Adventure 45th anniversary logo. (AP photo)
    It wasn't the amusement park thrill they were expecting. Some people at Great Adventure in New Jersey were left stranded on rides after a power outage.
    It wasn't the amusement park thrill they were expecting. Some people at Great Adventure in New Jersey were left stranded on rides after a power outage.
  • 2 inmates escape from youth detention center

    2 inmates escape from youth detention center

    Sunday, September 14 2014 3:14 PM EDT2014-09-14 19:14:38 GMT
    (File)(File)
    Authorities are searching for two inmates who escaped from a youth detention center in southern New Jersey.
    Authorities are searching for two inmates who escaped from a youth detention center in southern New Jersey.
  • Miss America attempts to buff Atlantic City's image

    Miss America to buff Atlantic City's image

    Sunday, September 14 2014 2:59 PM EDT2014-09-14 18:59:11 GMT
    (Miss America Pageant)(Miss America Pageant)
    After months of bad news including casino closings and thousands of laid-off workers, Atlantic City is in for some positive publicity.
    After months of bad news including casino closings and thousands of laid-off workers, Atlantic City is in for some positive publicity.
Powered by WorldNow

KRIV FOX 26
4261 Southwest Freeway
Houston, TX 77027

Phone: (713) 479-2801
Fax: (713) 479-2859

Didn't find what you were looking for?
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Fox Television Stations, Inc. and Worldnow. All Rights Reserved.
Privacy Policy | New Terms of Service What's new | Ad Choices