Roof Grants Worth Up to $7,500 Now Available through SC’s Safe Home Program: Applications Opening Shortly
The South Carolina Safe Home grant program, known for its high competition and transformative impact, is set to open its application process on July 5. A subsequent round of applications will be accepted approximately six months thereafter. Notably, the regulations guiding this grant program have undergone modifications since the previous year.
A regular feature in this column, the Safe Home grant program provides substantial financial assistance to homeowners residing in hurricane-prone counties across the Palmetto State. The grants are designed to support the installation of more robust roofing, the replacement of standard doors and windows with storm-resistant alternatives, and the addition of protective measures such as hurricane shutters.
Residents of 11 counties – Beaufort, Berkeley, Charleston, Colleton, Dorchester, Florence, Georgetown, Horry, Jasper, Marion, and Williamsburg – are eligible to apply. However, it’s not just the geographical location that determines eligibility. The properties must be site-built, insured, single-family residences that are owner-occupied.
The program does not impose income limitations, thus, homeowners living and maintaining an insured property in any of the 11 listed counties qualify for the grant. However, provisions are made for those earning lower wages. They are not only exempted from the matching fund’s requirement but are also eligible to apply for slightly larger grants.
The value proposition of these grants is incredibly compelling. The home improvement projects funded by these grants are eligible for state tax credits, significantly offsetting a portion of the costs. Moreover, the enhancements made to the homes result in obligatory discounts on hurricane insurance premiums.
However, there is a catch – the funding pool for these grants is rather limited. When the application process commences, the funds can sometimes be depleted within mere hours. Legislative changes in 2018 eliminated income and home-value caps, extending eligibility to a greater number of homeowners. However, this expansion of the eligible pool was not matched with a proportionate increase in grant funding.
For this round of applications starting July 5 (and repeated in about six months), approximately $1.1 million has been allocated. These funds are expected to cover around 325 grants. The program’s noble mission and tangible benefits ensure that each grant makes a significant impact, but it’s important to act fast given the scarcity of available funds.