My Safe Florida Home Program – Part 4
My Safe Florida Home grant program has already launched and I’m tracking my personal journey through the process. If you missed the previous parts of my series where I provided an overview of the My Safe Florida Homes program and the first steps in the process, catch up with Part 1, Part 2, and Part 3.
So far, I’ve gone over the program itself – the why and the who is eligible. I covered the how of the application and the process with some of what to expect.
And here we are now:
- Home inspection has been applied for.
- Home inspection has been completed and report received.
- Official application for the grant has been submitted to My Safe Florida Home for review.
My Safe Florida Home sent me an email on January 19, 2023 – five days after I submitted my application – to let me know I’d been approved. The email included the link to the approved inspectors that could be used. I’ve found that this list continues to have new contractors added periodically. I actually ended up using a company that was added to the list later (I wasn’t happy with the wait time for an estimate appointment with one of the original contractors, so I was checking the list for another when I discovered a new batch of contractors had been added).
Interestingly, the approval from the program didn’t specify what work was approved to be completed. They basically said that whatever the inspector called out was fair game. I did make a call for clarification before scheduling estimates, so I knew what I was able to have done and what the process was from there.
NOTE: If you call the program’s helpline, I’d set aside at least 30 minutes. I was kicked out of the queue a few times due to call volume and instead of keeping me on hold indefinitely, the system kicked me out. But within 30 minutes, I had a live person on the phone.
The clarification provided is that anywhere there’s a red X (or a blank box) on the inspection report summary (page 5 in my report), that work would be eligible and approved. Easy enough!
Based on my report, that meant I was green-lighted to move forward with getting some new windows. It was time to get on the phone and schedule a few (they say three) estimates/quotes from contractors on the list to come to my home. Then I’d have to decide who would actually do the work.
They do limit the time you have to complete your project. Basically, the funds are earmarked for your use. To ensure it’s there and doesn’t run out, the final re-inspection by My Safe Florida Home has to be “completed within one (1) year of the approval date OR before July 1, 2024 (whichever is sooner).” They say that “After 1 year, you may reply for grand funding, but funding is limited and the MSFH Program cannot guarantee future approvals.” Me being me, I immediately jumped into research, interview, and select my contractor to have my project completed ASAP!