Landlords denied assistance after losing property to flood

Weekday broadcast of WYMT Mountain News at 6
Published: Sep. 27, 2022 at 6:14 PM EDT
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PERRY COUNTY, Ky. (WYMT) - For Tracie Watts and her son, Bryce, the trailer they rented out was more than just an extra source of income.

“It was my trailer because my dad passed away two years ago, and he left it to me,” said Tracie Watts.

After Watts’ dad died, she and her son remodeled the trailer and started renting it out to people.

But July’s flood destroyed the trailer and left it beyond repair.

“We’ve had a few people look at it and they can’t save it,” said Bryce Watts. “It is a big hit because it was helping me pay my bills as much as it was hers, so it is a big loss.”

The pair said thankfully the tenant who was living there was able to get reimbursed for some of his belongings, but they have been denied assistance from several disaster relief organizations.

“Once they found out I wasn’t living in it, they couldn’t help people that don’t live in it,” Tracie said. “It’s a secondary home and so, you’re just out of luck. I tried several times.”

Tracie said she is in the process of appealing those denials, and in the meantime, she hopes other property owners continue pushing forward to get the help they need.

“Well, it’s still a great loss. We need help too,” said Tracie. “We’re not asking you to go beyond the means of it but there should be some help out there because you’re still losing a home. At some point, I may have gone there. So, just appeal. That’s all you can do.”

Bryce Watts said although his grandfather’s trailer is gone, he still remains grateful.

“There has been people with their property destroyed a lot more than mine, so I’m just glad that the land is mainly okay,” he said. “It’s unfortunate for the trailer, but things could have been a lot worse so I’m thankful for that.”

Tracie Watts said she and her son are still figuring out their next course of action with the property, but they are having issues finding someone to remove the trailer from the area.