Ike housing damages said to be $8.5 billion in Harris County; more than 1/2 of Houston apartments damaged

Two stories in today’s Houston Chronicle point to the staggering cost of housing damages.  We are still waiting for the FEMA damage estimates to be completed.

But for now, consider these estimates.

Ike toll on county homes $8.5 billion by Mike Snyder…

Less than two weeks after Ike made landfall Sept. 13, the housing authority deployed assessment teams that inspected more than 126,000 properties in the county’s southeast quadrant, where damage was greatest.

The results of these inspections were plugged into computer models that included wind-damage data developed by Rice University to project an overall residential damage estimate. It ranges from $7.2 billion to $9.8 billion, with a midrange estimate of $8.5 billion.

Ike damaged more than half of Houston’s apartments by Matt Stiles and Chase Davis…

Hurricane Ike’s fearsome winds damaged more than half of Houston’s 2,000 apartment complexes, tearing off roofs, tumbling walls and wreaking havoc on buildings with a history of decay and neglect, according to a Houston Chronicle analysis of new city data.

Nearly 150 apartment complexes – home to more than 93,000 renters – were damaged severely. Most of those apartments were located among the city’s most vulnerable neighborhoods, where blight already had driven many buildings into disrepair even before the storm, according to the data.