State searching for rentals to assist storm victims


Rental opportunities are slim in southern Indiana, where hundreds of Hoosiers find themselves homeless after last week's tornadoes.

Outside Henryville, the Carr family is trying to restore order from chaos. 

"Right now, they're determining whether they should tear it down or not," said Trish Carr.

They've got a temporary place to stay, but what about the longer term while the house is rebuilt?

"We're pretty fortunate, we do have some family around here. But there are lots of people who don't. It will be hard for them to find someplace to stay," Carr said.

A website from the state - - matches Hoosiers who have rental properties available with those needing rentals. For maybe the first time, the state is asking anyone with rental property in the counties around the tornado zone to register that property on the database.

Two properties in Henryville are on the database already. Eyewitness News wondered if they're still livable, so we decided to drive out and see. One survived with a little bit of damage, but the buildings are intact.

One resident told us there was only one vacancy in the complex. Down the street at another rental, Cheryl Freitas said there's going to be another one open. She's moving, but doesn't expect the landlord to have any trouble filling her place.

"No. There are a lot of people without homes right now. I couldn't give you an exact number," Freitas said.

The state estimates at least 300 dwellings are destroyed or unlivable around Henryville.

Landlord Matt Tole calls the rental market in Henryville "very tight." He said even before Friday's tornadoes, only two percent of rental units were vacant.

"Now, after the storm, you won't even be able to find a rental," he said.

If you have a rental available in the area, you can also list them on the state's website.