Jimmy Brabner doesn't mind the long, hard hours of labor he puts in every week.

He knows it has to be done to repair his flooded home.

"It's just a lot of work," Brabner said. "I'm doing the work myself. You come in after work every day and knock out a couple hours worth of work. Shower, rinse, repeat."

Brabner's home took on a foot of water during the historic flooding in August. He didn't have flood insurance at the time, so he's had to make do with few tools.

"I'm going to have to sacrifice to get to where I want to be, but everything that's good in life requires some kind of sacrifice," Brabner said.

Brabner's home was one of 60,000 that were damaged in Louisiana. Without flood insurance, his relief aid options were limited to FEMA and a few other resources.

Still, FEMA provided him with a mobile home and financial assistance.

FEMA spokesman Paul Corah said he is prepared to stay in Baton Rouge for as long as it takes to help victims rebuild.

"We're going to stay here until this event is done," Corah said. "We're probably going to have people in Baton Rouge for the next year or so."

Corah estimated that the average homeowner received about $7,000 in compensation.

He said FEMA determines the amount by assessing damage and the number of people per household.

"It's extremely frustrating for survivors," Corah said. "To have your house wiped out by a flood with all your possessions in it."

Corah said the renovation process largely depends on how fast contracting companies work.

J.W. Grand, Inc. contractor Scott Simoneaux is currently repairing ten houses across the Baton Rouge area. He said homeowners without flood insurance face extreme difficulties.

"Some of them, instead of taking a month to three months, it's going to take six to nine months," Simoneaux said.

Simoneaux said many flood victims still have to pay their mortgages on top of hiring individual subcontractors for repairs.

But though Brabner may not have much outside help, he said he's blessed with the skills to do renovations on his own.

"Some of that stuff we wanted to do, like replacing the carpet," Brabner said. "We're just doing it earlier than we intended. Life is going to be full of things you have to deal with, and this is just one of them."

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